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Life & Times

Image courtesy of the North Adams Historical Society, Inc

The twists & turns of history: the Mohawk Trail marks 100 years

Friday, September 12, 2014

What do Metacomet the warrior, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Benedict Arnold and Henry David Thoreau have in common? They all traveled the route that would become the Mohawk Trail — back in the days when the hairpin turn and other places were even steeper and narrower than they were on Oct. 22, 1914. That’s when the ancient Native American footpath-turned stage-coach route … 1

Between the Rows: spring blooming bulbs

Friday, September 12, 2014

These chilly days and cool nights have got me thinking about spring. Or more specifically, the need to plant spring blooming bulbs this fall. There is something about gardening that makes us gardeners keep one eye a season or two ahead, even as we work with the challenges and pleasures of the present. Catalogs for spring bloomers have already arrived. The Old House … 0

Writing a city

Friday, September 5, 2014

Evening light was turning golden as we set out, 16 writers with pens and yellow pamphlets in hand, on a “Flâneur Walk” through Northampton in early July. Led by poet Betsy Wheeler, whose collection of poems, “Loud Dreaming in a Quiet Room,” was published in 2012 by National Poetry Review Press, the walk … 0

Savoring the Seasons: Beets; a root for all seasons

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

By VINSULA HASTINGS (Mary’s Note: I’m on vacation this week. Vinsula’s a recent UMass graduate and great cook who aspires to involve food and local eating in her work.) Since mid July, I’ve been scouting my local farmers markets for beets. Perhaps this sounds strange, since most people … 0

‘Regent’s Punch’

Friday, July 18, 2014

Occasionally, the organizers of Dining with History like to feature food of past days. Kara Leistyna prepared this punch for one evening; she adapted it from “Saveur.” Ingredients: 1 cup sugar 1 cup cubed pineapple 2 lemons 2 … 0

Between the Rows: beans and squash and rabbits

Friday, August 1, 2014

Beans are among the most common vegetable crops. Because they are so common, perhaps we don’t think about the great variety of beans that we can grow and enjoy. Beyond string beans, we have shelly beans, long beans, … 0

Rise of the ‘usie’

Thursday, July 31, 2014

NEW YORK — What do you call a group selfie? An usie, of course! As in “us.” Pronounced uss-ee, rhymes with fussy. “Usies are a growing trend that I think have far more social value than selfies,” said … 0

Said and Done: Can a woodchuck swim? Sure!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

According to notes we have here on the building of the Quabbin Reservoir, the main dam was plugged in the summer of 1939 with an immediate effect on the trapped waters of the Swift River. People in the … 0

Speaking of Nature: Seaweed isn't a plant

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Some of my favorite summertime memories from my childhood revolve around visits to the ocean. I can remember wonderful trips to Cape Cod and the coast of Maine where it seemed that every sight, sound and smell was … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in western Massachusetts

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Unusual Connecticut River Water Levels NORTHFIELD — On Thursday July 31, water levels in the Connecticut River between Turners Falls and Vernon, Vt., will be lower than usual. FirstLight Hydro Generating Co. is supporting TransCanada Hydro Northeast in … 0

Savoring The Seasons: It’s time!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

By MARY MCCLINTOCK It’s time... to make “thumb jam” by using your thumb to smash fresh-off-the-vine raspberries onto hot buttered toast. It’s time ... to sit chatting with a friend on the porch while cutting green beans into bite-sized pieces, then blanching and freezing them to enliven winter … 0

Between the Rows: Flowers, so many beautiful choices!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Gardeners who want a flower garden usually want that flower garden to be in bloom all season long. There are different ways to do this. One way is to have different flower beds for different seasons. I have … 0

Between the Rows: You'll find this berry interesting

Friday, July 18, 2014

Elderberries and chokeberries are not as beautiful or familiar as spring’s strawberry, but these small, dark berries that ripen in late summer pack a nutritional wallop. I’ve known the elderberry (Sambucus canadensis) since childhood, but the chokeberry (Aronia … 0