Thursday, February 28, 2008

February, be gone already.

I feel like all I ever blog about these days is the weather. It appears today will be no exception. Hard not to given it's 18 degrees outside with a zero windchill and record cold (to -4F) planned for tonight. Oh, and need I mention, 4 - 8 inches in the forecast for tomorrow. This latest round of precip should bring us close to the record for February (somewhere in the neighborhood of 8 inches I think). If that had been all snow, we'd be buried up to my Mt. Tom sign out front. Holy cow (paper towel dispenser).

Alas, nothing to do about it but complain and throw another log on the fire. Easter is early this year, so who knows, maybe so too will be Spring.

And with that, perhaps some more interesting topics for this blog...

Sunday, February 24, 2008

We interrupt the doom and gloom of winter..

To bring you a crisp blue cloudless sky, brilliant sunshine, pinkish hues of the setting sun on the mountain just before dark, the quote I came across this morning for the board...

Only when your consciousness is totally focused on the moment you are in can you receive whatever gift, lesson, or delight that moment has to offer.
- Barbara De Angelis

I hope you're enjoying this weekend respite from February.

Friday, February 22, 2008

My Buddy climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro...

...and all I got was this lousy picture of a t-shirt. Actually, this is the coolest picture ever. My buddy Rick just returned from the amazing life adventure of climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. I haven't had the chance to talk to him about it and hear the undoubtedly wild stories from his trip, but I just had to post this shot as soon as I got it.

Rick had mentioned he would do this when he got to the top, but given what must be the ultimate rush to stand on the top of the world's highest free-standing mountain, I honestly didn't think this would be high on his list of 'things to do when I get to the top of Kilimanjaro'. Sure enough, he's a man of his word...

Thanks Rick, and congrats. Well done my friend.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Last Night's Eclipse.

Believe it or not, I took this one using my sweet little Pentax A30 point and shoot digital camera. Perfectly clear and crispy night for it. Hope you were able to look out your window during commercials for American Idol and check it out last night...

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Got Bees?

Gas prices, heating costs, dairy cost. Those you might expect to have an impact on the cost of an ice cream cone. Now you can add bees to that list. Who would have thunk...

NEW YORK ( -- Haagen-Dazs is warning that a creature as small as a honeybee could become a big problem for the premium ice cream maker's business. At issue is the disappearing bee colonies in the United States, a situation that continues to mystify scientists and frighten foodmakers. That's because, according to Haagen-Dazs, one-third of the U.S. food supply - including a variety of fruits, vegetables and even nuts - depends on pollination from bees.,2933,331532,00.html

Fear not, I'm doing my best to keep my prices from 'beeing' affected.

Snow Fog.

As is life here in New England, you just never know what kind of weather you're going to get next. Yesterday, it was 53 degrees, wrapped around 20 degree windchills the day before and a brisk sunny day today. Throw in a few downpours and the snow and ice will usually result in what we saw here on the pond yesterday, a cool winter fog.
Far be it for a little fog and warm temps to deter the diehard ice fisherman though. In case you are having trouble spotting the ice angler in the shot above, I've taken the liberty of employing a few Photoshop tricks to help you...

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day.

To you and yours. Thinking about getting some great gourmet chocolates for your special someone? I know I'm a little biased, but I think you should go down to Mt. Tom's right now. The weather looks dicey for Wednesday, better be safer than sorry (and having to say sorry)...

See you soon.

Wanted: Artists

Every second Saturday of the month here in Easthampton is ArtWalkEasthampton. Organized a couple years ago by Michael Crawford and Thomas Hanus, it's a great way for local artists to show their work. It also makes for a fun and interesting night 'on the E-town'. Each month, participating local businesses and organizations each choose an artist to display art on the walls of their business. During the warm months, ArtWalk nights include cool street performers like the Silver Swimmers... The hours are 5-8pm, and the next one is March 8th. Aside from June, I'm still looking for artists to fill my walls during this year's walks. My walls have room for around a dozen pieces. Each show usually hangs until just before the next one, so in addition to ArtWalk night, your art will be viewed by anyone who comes to Mt. Tom's during that entire month. You're welcome to put prices on work, and I'm happy to help connect you with anyone looking to purchase a piece.

If you're interested in showing your art here at Mt. Tom's, just drop me a line or stop in.

Friday, February 08, 2008


Amid a sunless and solemn (at least if you're a Pats fan) mid-winter week sometimes comes an unexpected ray of sunshine. For me, it came in the form of this little beauty. A donation from my friend and Mt. Tom's regular, Dorothy, direct from the depths of her basement. I'm sure you are endlessly envious of my good fortune and have already begun googling like crazy to discover where you too might be able to appropriate such a fine piece of art. It actually is numbered on the bottom, although we (Bess and I) don't expect to be stopping by the Antiques Roadshow anytime soon. I doubt Dorothy even remembers how she came to acquire the ole' heifer for handtowels. In any event, it seems Bessy is no longer welcome in her house, and just as peanut butter goes with jelly and cows, ice cream, Dorothy decided her buried in a box in the basement cow deserved to be in a place that might more appreciate her kind.

And thus the clouds have briefly lifted from my dank and dark week, and I will never again be wanting for a spare paper towel in my shop.

At least until I give her away to my brother for Christmas.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Super Bowl Highlight.

Certainly not the game, or outcome, anyone here in New England had anticipated or expected. Aside from a few good plays and one or two commercials, it was the stuff of nightmares and a flashback to the hard luck days of being a diehard Boston sports fan. All due credit goes to to the G-men for a game well prepared for and a battle fought with passion. The team that deserved to win that day is the one getting a victory parade in their hometown today. I think we all knew the day wasn't going to go as scripted when we saw Billy B come out in a red hoodie and not the usual gray. Where was Nomah to remind him of superstition and to not tempt fate by daring change on such an important and potentially sports history-making evening?!

Even the halftime show was dull.

For me, there was just one highlight. At the superbowl party where I watched the fiasco in Phoenix, I discovered quite possibly the best chips n' salsa chip ever. Giant, fresh, crispy, salty slices of heaven. After devouring half the bowl as dinner, I asked our gracious host Kris where I could get me some. To which she replied, 'On the Border' in West Springfield. Seven bucks for what her daughter Taylor called 'a trash bag full'. Needless to say, yesterday I drowned my sorrows in a giant frozen margarita with salt, the three enchalada plate, and a trash bag of chip greatness to go.

The only other consolation prize for us is we don't have to endure all that Pats bashing, Spygate, will-they-or-won't-they go undefeated chatter anymore.

At least until next year.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Six More Weeks of Winter.

Well, it seems Uncle Phil saw his shadow this morning down at Gobbler's Knob. We all know what that means. If you believe in Phil's cred as a forecaster of the weather, that is.

All I know is we got a deluge of rain into the night yesterday, and yet the dirty snowbanks and icy back parking lot survive. After a big rain in the winter, we here in northern climates are left saying, 'Imagine if this was snow, we'd be buried!' Alas, no four feet of snow for us this time.

In any event, as generally a glass is half full kind of guy, I wish you 'only' six more weeks of winter. Make yourself a chai tea or a hot spiced and spiked cider, unfold that old Patriots tailgating blanket, and pop in a good movie from your favorite local video store. And don't forget the pint of cookie dough and bag of gummy bears.

Speaking of sweets, only twelve more shopping days until Valentine's Day...

GO PATS! Enjoy the game and the festivities. I'm sure you're as tired of the two weeks of tabloid-like hype as I am. It's finally go time. It seems like this 'quest for perfection' season has lasted about eight years. Looking forward to it going into the record books, hopefully as 19-0. We'll all know the answer soon...

Just think, pitchers and catchers report for spring training in twelve days!