Sunday, December 25, 2011
Most businesses must be closed today.
Since Christmas falls on a Sunday, by Massachusetts law the holiday will be observed on Monday. Today, full restrictions apply. Most businesses must be closed, but there are some limited exemptions. On Monday, the usual holiday rules apply.
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Volunteers bagged up toys so hundreds of children in Watertown can have Christmas gifts.
Dozens of black plastic bags were filled with games, dolls, and other toys in the Community Room at the Watertown Police Station today, bound for hundreds of needy children in Watertown. The holiday gift program was started by John "Sonny" Whooley, a former Watertown Police sergeant. For the past 24 years, his colleagues have helped keep the late-Whooley's spirit of giving alive, said Detective Dave Collins. Toys come from a variety of sources, including the Watertown Police Foundation, the Watertown Police Supervisors Association, the Watertown Firefighters Union, the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Marine Corps League of Watertown, Watertown Savings Bank Employees, Strip T's, The Greater Boston Church, Sacred Heart Church, United …
Monday, December 19, 2011
The ubiquity of Christmas music.
Are you sick of hearing Christmas music yet? Once Thanksgiving is over, it's played everywhere. I know that a lot of people love this music and it helps get them in the Christmas spirit. But for many others, hearing the same songs ad nauseam gets quite tiring, annoying, maddening. I was in Stop & Shop the Saturday after Thanksgiving when suddenly the sound of "sleigh bells" permeated my consciousness. I immediately tried to ignore it. I haven't been shopping much this holiday season, but when I was in Filene's Basement in the Arsenal Mall last week, Christmas tunes were playing nonstop. Fortunately, I am often able to tune out much of the musical background noise in a store. Retail stores are the worst offenders in going overboard with …
Friday, December 16, 2011
Vocal trio puts their jazzy spin on some holiday classics
The jazz trio The Sisters of Swing will bring their energy and vocal harmonies for the first time to the Arsenal Center on Monday, Dec. 19. The vocal group is known for performances of the Great American Songbook that are fresh, sophisticated, fun, and set to original swinging arrangements. Monday night's concert is part of the 'JAZZ at the Arsenal' concert series. According to the Arsenal Center for the Arts website, the series "features a wide variety of jazz styles performed by the best jazz ensembles in the Boston area including many headed up by Berklee College’s world-renowned faculty." The "Sisters" feature Berklee College of Music assistant chair of Ear Training, Roberta Radley, a seasoned vocalist and pianist, and a Watertown …
Monday, December 12, 2011
Holidays may change for us as we grow older and become parents, so sometimes we need to redefine what makes it special for us.
As I get older, the time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day feels as if it is morphing into fewer and fewer days. As a kid, it always felt like an eternity as we waited for the big day. Now the time goes by with what feels like barely enough time to get it all together. This year I’m trying an experiment: focusing on feeling the holidays, rather than doing the holidays. In recent years, I seem to have the same thoughts as the holiday approaches. Should we get a tree the weekend after Thanksgiving? It feels so early. And it is 50 degrees outside. How about next weekend? But then there will only be a few weeks until we travel to the family to celebrate the holiday. We want to have time to enjoy it. But we really need to clean the house …
Saturday, December 10, 2011
Try these recipes to give cookies, brownies and even martinis some added flavor.
They’re a tree trimmer, a gift tie-on and the crowning glory on your holiday stocking. That’s right; the candy cane. With the holiday season in full swing, the candy cane has assumed its annual role as the grand poohbah of holiday symbols. Its colorful stripes and distinctive shape makes it a shoe-in for easy decorating and a sweet treat available by the dozens in countless stores around town. According to food historians at the National Confectioner’s Association, the candy cane has a long and not so colorful (literally) past. Legend has it that in 1670, the choirmaster at a cathedral in Germany handed out sugar sticks among his young singers to keep them quiet during lengthy services. In honor of the Christmas services, he had the …
Friday, December 9, 2011
This holiday classic is one the whole family should enjoy.
A few decades ago, moviegoers were introduced to a little boy and his quest for his ultimate Christmas gift: an Official Red Ryder Air Rifle. Now Ralphie Parker’s schemes to get the toy of his dreams have moved from screen to stage as the New Repertory Theatre and arsenalArts presents "A Christmas Story." The show opens at the Arsenal Center for the Arts this Sunday and runs through Christmas Eve. This production is directed by Diego Arciniegas, who began rehearsals 2-1/2 weeks ago. He sees the show as more about growing up than Christmas. "This is a 'coming of age' story, taking place against the backdrop of the holidays rather than being about them," he said. "It has a more inclusive message than other holiday shows, in that we share a …
Sunday, December 4, 2011
Church of the Good Shepherd hosts Blue Christmas, for those who have lost a loved one, face depression or other difficulties during the holiday season.
- THE NEIGHBORHOOD FILES
Sunday, December 4, 2011
The following information was provided by Church of the Good Shepherd.: The holiday season brings parties, carols, and tidings of joy. But for many people, it is a difficult time. The death of loved ones, financial pressures, depression, or other difficulties can make the pressure to feel jolly almost unbearable. Blue Christmas is an ecumenical gathering that acknowledges this reality and offers the comfort of companionship and hope for the journey ahead. Candlelight, song, prayer, reflection, community. Reception and conversation following, for those who would like to stay. Please mark your calendar and share the invitation with others for whom this gathering would be helpful. If you are a musician and would like to offer music, or if …
Saturday, December 3, 2011
Here's where to go in Watertown, Newton and beyond for selecting your festive fir.
First Unitarian Society in Newton 1326 Washington Street, Newton Phone: 617-527-3202 Type: Balsam firs Available beginning Saturday December 3. Pre-order or buy on the lot Russo's 560 Pleasant St., Watertown Phone: 617-923-1500 Types: Noble Fir, Scotch Pine, Douglas Fir Available now. Call or stop by for prices. Mahoney's Garden Center 115 Boston Post Road, Wayland Phone: 508-358-7333 Types: Balsam Fir, Frasier Fir, Noble Fir, Grand Fir, Black Hill Spruce, Scotch Pine, Colorado Blue Spruce Some available now. Prices range from $7.98-$200-plus. Call for more details. Allendale Farm 259 Allendale Rd., Chestnut Hill Phone: 617-524-1531 Types: Balsam Fir, Frasier Fir and White Pine Coming soon: Noble Fir, Grand Fir and Concolor Fir …
Think outside the box with these recipes for homemade coffee liqueur and caramel sauce.
One of the true joys of the holiday season is the opportunity to catch up with friends (or make some new ones) at holiday gatherings. Some years it seems every weekend is packed with parties or gatherings of some sort. Knowing that our festive Patch readers are nothing if not well mannered, it seemed like a good time to offer a thought or two about hostess gifts. Many of us (this writer included) rely on a nice bottle of wine as way of expressing gratitude, but what better time of year to add a special flare than the holidays ? Hostess gifts are a token of appreciation offered to the person or persons kind enough to include you on their guest list. They are certainly not obligatory but they are always appreciated. There are some points …