Editors' Musings


About this Blog

Your Old Farmer's Almanac editors occasionally share our reflections, advice, and musings—and welcome your comments. too.

November 30, 2015

Every December, we cook up a storm for the annual Almanac Christmas party. Last year, a huge ice storm forced us to cancel our festivities—so we were looking forward to this year’s celebration. Below are photos of the holiday table. Can you tell that we love to bake and cook?! This year, we hosted a holiday afternoon tea; the table was loaded with sweets, breads, and decorative tea cups. Here are a few of the holiday recipes: Buche de Noel Cranberry Punch Christmas Fruit Cookies Cranberry... more

July 1, 2015

Every January, the members of my community garden have a potluck supper, during which we thumb seed catalogs and order for the coming season. To this day, I do not know what possessed me to raise my hand to get “put down” for two ounces of scarlet runner beans. Only later in spring, standing on my patch of soil with the glossy bean seeds in my palm, did I pay attention to the fine print in the catalog: “Need trellis, fences, or pole; will grow to 10–12’.” Ten to twelve feet? What was I ... more

April 10, 2015

At breakfast, I sit near my backyard window and listen to birds’ sweet songs in the morning light. Did you know that birds are one of the best cues to the length of a day? The changing daylight has a hormonal trigger in birds, and starts them whistling. Our wooded backyard draws all kinds of birds; my favorites are the tiny jeweled hummingbirds who are attracted by our bee balm and other plants. (On the gardening page, you can find our guide on best shrubs and trees for birds as well as best... more

December 17, 2014

As you sweep out the old year and ring in the new one, be aware that not all of the ice will be in your glass. If the Almanac weather prediction for cold, snow, and frozen surfaces is even close to its traditional 80 percent accuracy rate (and we’re doing pretty well so far this season), you might glide into 2015 in ways that you do not plan or expect. Wet or slick, icy roads and walkways will be under, before, and around most of us on December 31 and/or January 1. For those walking or driving... more

December 16, 2014

Dreaming of white Christmas weather? For many folks, the quintessential Christmas is one that sees snow flurries on the holiday eve followed by a blanket of fluffy white flakes on Christmas day.  In areas that do not normally see snow, a little chill in the air is usually welcome to set the festive mood. For the 2014 Christmas season, we at the Almanac believe that we will all get the weather we want—on or in advance of the big event. The Almanac’s long-range weather forecast for December,... more

December 9, 2014

For the past four months, we’ve shown you photos of clouds that might remind you of a certain object, character, or creature. This month, we decided to be a little different. You’re looking at a typical “mackerel sky,” so named because its wavy striped pattern resembles the markings on certain mackerel fish. This photo was taken from our Almanac office in Dublin, New Hampshire; you can see the church steeple next door and the American flag in our town center. Several proverbs are related to... more

November 18, 2014

It’s amazing how invisible water vapor can condense into tiny water droplets or ice particles, gather together, and form visible clouds. It reminds us that clear air is not empty, but is instead full of substance. Sometimes clouds will transform into familiar shapes, which often last only a few minutes. Finding these transient recognizable forms is called nephelococcygia. To learn more about this pastime, see our first cloud post. This month, we have posted a photo of another interestingly... more

October 2, 2014

Clouds are always changing shape. Occasionally, they’ll morph into a familiar form, such as an animal, plant, or man-made object. If you like to watch clouds, we invite you to look at the photo here and tell us what recognizable shapes you see. This particular cloud was spotted from the parking lot of The Old Farmer’s Almanac on one fine summer day. (We’ve enjoyed the imaginative comments about our past postings. Thank you, everyone! Keep them coming and have fun!) To learn about this popular... more

September 15, 2014

If you like to look for familiar shapes in clouds, you’ve come to the right spot. Every few weeks, we will invite you to tell us what recognizable shapes you see in a cloud photo, such as a sailboat, tree, or horse. To learn about this popular pastime, take a gander at our previous blog post on clouds here. In the meantime, we think that you will have fun with this next photo, submitted by Annie Allemani. (Thank you, Annie!) Can you spot a familiar form? Please post your thoughts below. Thank... more

July 28, 2014

I love attending garden tours and shows. This past summer, I was entranced by a garden called “The Night Sky” at a garden show. (See my last post with pictures from the Chelsea Flower Show.) As soon as I saw “The Night Sky” garden, I couldn't wait to share with Almanac readers. Some of you may recall our story, “Create an Astronomical Garden,” from The 2012 Old Farmer's Almanac. Not only might you all appreciate the earth and sky theme, but I think many of us feel that the best gardens get us... more


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