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Two Vermont performers, Fern Maddie and Kimberley McKee, have recently released freshman recordings featuring their own songs and their individual take on banjo playing.

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A never-before-heard solo version of the late Aretha Franklin’s riveting and powerful collaboration with Mary J. Blige about faith and race, 2006’s “Never Gonna Break My Faith,” has arrived on Juneteenth.

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I grew up on a street lined with tall, stately elms. While walking to school one day, I found a bird’s nest that the wind had blown down. The nest was a beautiful, silky gray pouch. My teacher helped me identify it as a Baltimore oriole’s nest. Over the years, I found a couple of similar nes…

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After the bit of rain this week, everything is really popping here at the farm. Even the lawn is looking better, having been brown and August-looking in the near drought conditions. Many of the corn and pumpkin seeds we planted failed to germinate as the soil was so dry when they went into t…

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As we roll out those lazy, hazy days of summer, many of us break the bonds of fully clad dogs and instead don our flip-flops — especially during our times of leisure. I, for one, used to join the multitudes and practice this freedom for the flesh, gleefully airing my tootsies in the warmth o…

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Of the many places I have lived, Sutton Mills has the most diverse birdlife right outside my window. In Brooklyn, I woke up to the relentless scolding of house sparrows and the more haunting cries of gulls. In Rochester, New York cardinals and robins welcomed the sun. In Unity, New Hampshire…

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Many of us avoid close encounters of the eight-legged kind, but if you have ever come eye to eye with a spider, you have probably noticed they have several more eyes than we do: most have four pairs. What do they do with so many eyes? Well, it depends on the spider.

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A friend dropped off a gift for me the other day: a “bee house” with bamboo tubes to attract native pollinators to take up residence now graces an outdoor corner of my carport. With plenty of wildflowers and planted flowers around the house, I should be able to attract some local native bees…

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