We celebrate George Washington’s birthday this month, during a long cold and flu season. Much like President Washington, I cannot tell any lies — about these winter illnesses. Instead, I want to speak the truth about some rumors regarding the common cold.

That sweet time of year is almost upon us. Soon, Vermont’s sugarhouses will come to life as sap starts flowing from the maple trees and into plastic piping and metal buckets, to be collected and boiled down into one of our state’s favorite sweet treats, maple syrup.

It was sort of a mutual curiosity society: The wolves were watching us from perches on hillsides, and we were watching them from our canoes as we passed. We lads of the Geriatric Adventure Society’s Arctic Division were a long way from anywhere, on the Hayes River in Nunavut; coordinates rou…

I love trees, and find them endlessly fascinating. Each is unique, much as we are. One winter I attempted (and failed) to read all of Michael Dirr’s authoritative “Dirr’s Encyclopedia of Trees and Shrubs” — all 950 pages of it. I only read about trees that are hardy here, and still only foun…

A few winters back, there was a doe who frequented our compost heap. The garden fence around it proved an inadequate barrier, as she simply hopped over it to nosh on the rotting shards of jack-o-lanterns and the latest veggie scraps tossed atop the pile. Not far from the garden sits an old o…

Right around Valentine’s Day, parents always crush me with questions about their son’s or daughter’s first romantic relationship. Take heart, and let me provide some information on this heartfelt topic.

Let’s face it. It can be hard to get outside during a Vermont winter to get some exercise and activity every day. The good news is that the Rutland region is brimming with programs, new and old, to make it easy and fun to play outside in the snow. So, let’s talk about all of the outdoor acti…

When we’re filing out our income tax returns, most of us are focused on how much money we’re going to get back. But when it comes to the Vermont state income tax return, there is an invitation to donate some of your refund to a good cause.

The only thing I dislike about New England is that whenever I have an inspiration about a feature of our beautiful, but sequestered life, I discover that another immigrant far more talented — Robert Frost — has already been there. Likewise commentary on the socio-political scene: Whenever I …

Remember that sweet, sunny June morning when you took your children to the local kids’ fishing derby? You captured those big smiles on camera as your kids held up the very first trout of the day, maybe the first fish of their young lives, then looked on as they munched on hot dogs and drank …

On winter mornings when I look out my window, I often see a gray squirrel clinging upside down to the post supporting my bird feeder, with his front paws in the tray, munching sunflower seeds. Sometimes, a much smaller red squirrel is perched on the opposite side of the feeder.

I am always perked up when the spring flower shows arrive, and I always try to get to a couple of them. If you’re feeling the midwinter blues, I highly recommend attending one, or more. Here’s this year’s lineup.

As part of a campaign in support of nuclear cardiac imaging, The Rutland Health Foundation, the fundraising department at Rutland Regional Medical Center, recently launched a campaign to raise $500,000 in support of a new nuclear medicine camera for the Rutland Heart Center.

Winter is a good time to look at the trees and shrubs on your property. Even though the snow may keep you from working on your trees, study your landscape now to see if you need to do some judicious tree removal or pruning before summer.

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Macaroni and cheese has always been on my “must-explore” list. It’s just eaten too often in this country for us to ignore it. Kids in particular say yes to macaroni and cheese when they turn up their noses at everything else. Unfortunately, it’s the boxed version, complete with orange cheese…

With February being National Heart Month, parents have been pumping me about their children’s heart health. Let me get to the heart of the matter and talk about the prevention of heart disease, beginning in childhood.

A husky, dark-haired man, looking to be maybe in his 50s, stands at the edge of a freshly frozen black-ice lake, wearing a bathing suit and a pair of ice skates. He steps onto the ice carrying a short-bladed chain saw. He starts the saw and, squatting down, touches it to the ice between his …

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CONCORD, N.H. — Have you taken a shine to someone? Tell them how you feel with a handmade Valentine’s Day card decorated with colorful foil.

"The LEGO Movie" is a hard act to follow. Its world was so fresh and vibrant and unexpected, it's no wonder that it spawned a number of spinoffs of varying quality. But the big test was always going to be the sequel and whether or not it could recreate the magic of the first. And I'm pleased…

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FORT BRAGG, N.C. — Army soldiers struggle to haul heavy sleds backward as fast as they can down a grassy field at Fort Bragg, filling the brisk North Carolina morning air with grunts of exertion and the shouts of instruction from their coaches.

While many Vermonters are downhill skiers, some like to ski uphill, too. Called skinning, these skiers head to the resorts or their favorite backcountry locales to “earn their turns” — that is, to ski up the mountain, then turn around and ski back down.

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Peanut blossom cookies first gained notoriety at the 1957 Pillsbury Bake-Off. They're simply a peanut butter cookie topped with a Hershey's Kiss. We started with the original recipe and made tweaks to it with the goal of achieving a more robust peanut flavor.

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Feeding birds in winter is one of the nation’s most popular wildlife-watching activities, yet many ornithologists say it’s often more rewarding for people than for birds. And it might even put wild birds at risk.

Did you know that heart disease affects one in three women? That’s one in three of our mothers, wives, aunts, sisters, and best friends. In honor of American Heart Month this February, we are sharing tips from seven employees who are committed to living heart-healthy. Some of these women hav…

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A stunning sofa or a beautiful wall color might catch your eye when you enter someone’s home. But flooring is the key to any room, says interior designer Elina Cardet.

Looking out the kitchen window the other evening, before I turned in for the night, I was amazed to see a temperature reading of 16 below. The next morning, just before 7 a.m., it was a jaw-dropping 23 below zero. I think we can say that the two big February ice fishing derbies, set for late…

When I’m skiing or skating across a pond, I observe the shoreline, surrounding hills, islands, maybe a woodpecker or blue jay winging its way to the opposite shore. I look up at the sky, the clouds, swirling snowflakes. But there is a world beneath my feet that I don’t see, in what Henry Dav…

When I asked which kinds of local produce the co-op carried during the winter, Robert Kirigin, produce manager at Hunger Mountain Co-op in Montpelier, surveyed a spreadsheet of recent wholesale purchases.

During the summer of 1964, I spied a pile of old Life magazines that someone was throwing way. I grabbed them and took them home. Plowing through the articles, I came across one titled “Marshmallow Becomes a Man,” about a sort of couch-potato kid from Bulger, Pennsylvania, who got sent to an…

Winter is our slow season, and many gardeners begin to languish as January finishes and spring is still far away. It is important to keep busy. For me, this means reading gardening books and magazines, and working on small tasks that can be done indoors now. Preparing plant labels is one of …

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Prep surface. Gathering spot. Storage solution. The kitchen island is one of those home elements that seems to have known its purpose from its inception: a utilitarian divider between kitchen and family zones, the heart of the home.

February is National Heart Awareness month, with the goal to bring more awareness about the prevalence and severity of heart disease in the United States.

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My gardening season begins on my garage floor. Here I mix potting soil that will nourish this season’s seedlings and replace worn-out soil around the roots of houseplants.

January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month. It is important to note that people are often unaware of glaucoma until they have lost some or all of their vision, making glaucoma one of the leading causes of irreversible blindness in the United States. So the questions I will answer in this a…