Ah. There’s nothing like a steaming cup of hot cocoa and a Pop Tart to start the day. At least, that’s what I thought as a kid, when that was what woke me up and got me out the door to school. I was only half right, though. Eating something after a night’s rest is important, but choosing the right breakfast foods makes the difference between a whole morning of satisfaction and a brief burst of energy followed by a slump. My stomach is growling and even the wretched smell of cat food — my first task of the day, for the cats’ breakfasts — does not stop me from looking forward to my own breaking of the fast. There are many good reasons for fueling the body in the morning.
The 2015 Newtown Car Show is slated for June 20, with up to 250 exotic cars to be presented in the parking lot of Stop & Shop, 228 South Main Street. As of January 21, just 43 openings remained for car owners hoping to reserve a parking location for their vehicles on what show Co-Chair Chris Sferruzzo is hoping will be a sunny Saturday. Spaces for 250 cars are planned. Registration is $10 per vehicle, with proceeds to be donated to FAITH Food Pantry.
Ten hours after her mother went into labor, Angelina Jean Berger was born on Tuesday, January 6. Her arrival was much easier on her mother than older sister Allison’s arrival. “She was 56 hours of labor,” Jessica Berger said Wednesday evening, looking toward Allison while cuddling Angelina in her lap. Gesturing toward the newborn, Jessica added, “She was nice and easy. We really lucked out with both of our girls. Both are wonderful.” Gathered in the living room of the Sandy Hook home Wednesday evening, the family was celebrating the announcement that young Angelina has been named The Newtown Bee’s First Baby of 2015.
Knowing how much extra to feed your horse in cold weather starts with knowing what to feed him year-round to keep him in good weight depending on his age, breed, exercise level, and his general overall health. In the wild, horses free feed themselves exclusive on forage or pasture grasses and plants. In today’s modern world of stabled horses, free-feed pasture has been replaced by limited feed of hay and concentrated feed like whole grains like oats or corn or a processed pelleted feed. Experienced horse people have an “eye” to know when their horse is too thin or too fat or just right. Similarly, they know when a horse or pony has too much energy — like putting a saddle on a rocket ship as he bucks his way to Mars — or too little. Horse sense, commercially prepared feeds, and our veterinarians provide most owners and professionals with the tools to feed our horses proper rations. But what if we want to be more scientifically sure of our feeding program provides our horse with what he needs? Or, what if our horse is starting to exhibit signs of losing weight, respiratory distress, skin abnormalities, or other symptoms? Hay testing can help provide the answer to both these questions.
Rain falling on a frigid winter ground Sunday, January 18, formed a coat of ice that likely kept many residents home during Boy Scout Seth Barrett’s charity collection that afternoon. He had a late start due to the weather on what was to be a one-day collection that morning, so has extended his drive for goods to benefit Operation Hope, a food pantry and homeless shelter in Fairfield, through February 1. A collection box is now located in the front lobby of The Newtown Bee office.
With the recent cold snap I’ve become nostalgic for hay. That’s right, hay. Whenever sub-zero wind chills make the news, I take a deep breath and can recall that sweet smell of alfalfa and timothy on crisp winter mornings. My old horse would eat copious amounts of hay when the mercury dipped below freezing. Hay is what kept him warm and each winter it seemed all I did from sunrise to sunset to moonrise was fill his hay net over and over and over again. Experienced horse people know the centuries-old animal husbandry tactic: when it gets colder, feed your horse more hay and he will stay warm. When a horse lived in the backyard, my life used to revolve around this winter hay ritual — check the temperature, adjust the flakes delivered. In addition, I gained expert knot-tying status as I hung the string hay net on the inside of his shed every morning, noon, and night. An added benefit, my biceps and triceps became shapely from hoisting heavy hay-laden nets over my head to secure the net.
Perhaps Newtown can claim some ownership to the recent director-actor pairing: former resident Nate Hapke and seasoned performer Richard Herd. Hapke, himself a child star turned film maker, is in the early stages of developing a second film in as many years with the veteran character actor who has previously appeared in dozens of film, stage and television projects. At the same time, Hapke is promoting a 2014 film he produced with Herd and actor Al Thompson entitled "Thom & Gerry," which was shot in town last year. Local audiences may eventually be treated to a double feature of Hapke’s films as he is in preliminary discussions to screen them in September during the 2015 Newtown Arts Festival.