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Not just a cute hat: Knitting may have health benefits

When I picked up knitting needles for the first time about two years ago, I couldn’t have imagined how vital the hobby would become to my well-being. Learning to knit was hard for me, but once I mastered it, the craft became addictive, in a good way: It calmed me and helped me to write and to deal with the frustrations of motherhood.

Many varieties of plants susceptible to green algae

Garden Guy, I have waited seven years for avocados to appear on my trees. Now there is small fruit galore. I have fertilized and mulched as you have suggested and the leaves are dark green with some new growth. But some of the lower leaves have reddish spots … the same thing is showing up on my one mango tree. Will the discolored leaves affect the fruit? Do you think my trees are diseased? Help needed in Hilo.

Let’s Talk Food: Pai‘i‘ai, freshly pounded taro

As we begin our annual Merrie Monarch festivities, it is important to remember that our Hawaiian ancestors pounded pa‘i‘ai from the taro they raised. Pa‘i‘ai lasts for months, so left in a gourd, it was the mainstay for those sailing for months in canoes. Fish caught was eaten with the pa‘i‘ai and they were able to survive the many months at sea.

Boston preps for wave of marathon visitors

BOSTON — With an expanded field of runners and the memory of last year’s bombings elevating interest in one of the world’s great races, the 2014 Boston Marathon could bring an unprecedented wave of visitors and an influx of tourism dollars to the area.

Things people never say in hospice

Four years of my professional life were spent working in hospice. Director of bereavement and pastoral care. Simply put, four of the best years of my life. Creative, energizing and a daily learning curve. A downer? Absolutely not! Quite the opposite. More hopeful, inspirational, meaningful.

Louisville: 5 free things for visitors to do

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — When it’s Kentucky Derby season in Louisville, money seems to flow faster than the Ohio River. Hotels and restaurants fill up; bars serve mint juleps and fine Kentucky bourbon. Shopping includes a hunt for the colorful hats worn as a Derby tradition. Parties are thrown, and wagers are plunked down on can’t-miss colts and longshots alike as fans guess which horse will win the famous race at Churchill Downs.

Garden pest control naturally

Gardeners worried about the safety of synthetic pest-control products sometimes turn to botanically derived compounds instead. But many of those also contain toxic ingredients, such as nicotine, rotenone and pyrethrins.