Monthly Archives: July 2014

Here’s the Deal On Alchemy…

We will be reopening fall 2014 with Chef Paolo Laboa in the kitchen. Paolo’s menu will consist of genuine Northern Italian cuisine that showcases the freshest, local ingredients at approachable prices.

If you want to catch Paolo before the opening, he will be touring the Serenitee Group restaurants. Paolo will work the team to create a signature dish that reflects his interpretation of the restaurant’s cuisine.

Head to Facebook for more information on where Paolo is:

Thank you!

Paolo and Chef Scott at Opus

Groundhog or Woodchuck (or Whistle-pig)?

Groundhog woodchuck ©Kim Smith2014

Marmota monax

That’s precisely what I wondered when I encountered this large member of the order Rodentia at a job site recently. Our eyes locked for several moments as we both stood perfectly still, it trying to disguise itself as an inanimate object and me trying to take a snapshot. I took a step forward and off it burrowed back into its tunnel.

Google search reveals that groundhogs and woodchucks are one and the same species (Marmota monax) and the critters also go by the names of whistle-pig (I like this one best) and land-beaver. The name whistle-pig is derived from their behavior of emitting a high-pitched whistle to alert members of their colony of impending danger. Woodchuck stems from either an Algonquin or Narragansett name for the animal, wuchak.

Whistle-pigs are the largest members of the Squirrel Family, although you can’t see that in the above photo as this is a juvenile. They dwell in areas where woodland meets open space. All summer long whistle-pigs stuff their little furry faces with wild grasses, other wild plants, tree bark, berries, and agricultural crops to build their fat reserves for the long winter hibernation. They are notoriously destructive in gardens. We have yet to see any damage in the gardens at Willowdale due to the resident woodchuck family. I imagine they are finding enough food in the surrounding forest.

Follow Kim on Twitter @kimsmithdesigns and be her friend on Facebook.

Brought to you live

DSCF4964Sheila Foley of Stoneham, Ma. has found a nice little niche for herself. Among other creative endeavors she is a live event painter. She captures special events as they occur, or,when schedules conflict, she does on-site preliminary renditions which she competes later from photos taken at the event. Either way, what comes out is a unique way to remember important occasions.

Here, Sheila does some sketches of the pier at Maritime Gloucester in preparation for a live event painting of an upcoming engagement party.

Kitty Beer visits Gloucester

IMG_3887I met Kitty Beer on the Water Shuttle, she is an author who has published “Human Scale” Fiction – about Boston in 2062. where it is mostly under water.  She also wrote “What Love Can’t Do” another fiction about portrayal of the consequences of global warming.




Human Scale

What Love Cant Do

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