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Dec 31, 2010- New Year's Eve

Happy New Year's Eve !!!! [Permalink] - New Year's Eve

Dec 27, 2010- First Snow

First big storm of the season and it was a doozie. The snow was light and fluffy and the wind created some fairly good size drifts. Good thing we don't have any plans for the next few days.

The birds were the only creatures out and about. After the interns went and filled the bird feeders, they really came out in force. It must be hard to find something to eat when there is fifteen inches of snow on the ground. [Permalink] - FirstSnow


Dec 25, 2010- Merry Christmas

Everyone here at RainyDayMagazine would like to wish all of our readers a Merry Christmas!

See you all after the New Year!!![Permalink] - Santa Cat


Dec 24, 2010- Santa is on his way...

The first sighting of Santa has been reported !!! [Permalink] - Santa is on his way


Dec 23, 2010- Miracle On 34th Street...

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas !!! [Permalink] - Miracle On 34th Street


Dec 22, 2010- Vacation photo secret

What is the key to getting great vacation photos while in NYC? The secret is to bring a camera. NYC is just packed with amazing photo opportunities. It is not difficult to snap a good photo when one has views like these... [more]- Happy Holidays


Dec 21, 2010- Holiday Gift Guides

Still have some shopping left to do? Get some help from the 2010 Holiday Gift Guides. For those with an iPad, download the guide from iTunes.

Good luck with the shopping and Merry Christmas !!! [Permalink] - Happy Holidays


Dec 20, 2010- Christmas in NYC

Some friends were in town from Bermuda, so we took the LimoLiner to NYC this weekend to visit with them and with some family. We don't mind driving, but the weather forecast convinced us to leave the driving to someone else. The trip from Back Bay Hilton in Boston to the Hilton in NYC usually takes about four hours door to door. This time we took the 1PM from Boston and arrived in NYC around 5:30. The problem with this arrival time is the traffic in NYC is pretty bad. The bus driver had to make some pretty heroic maneuvers to get the giant bus in and out of that traffic! It added an extra 40 minutes to the trip, but it was still worth it once we stepped off the bus and saw the lights at night.

Gotham is magical this time of the year. The plazas in front of the buildings are all decorated. The trees are wrapped in lights. Shoppers, tourists, and street vendors are all out and about. NYC is busy all the time, but it was CRAZY this weekend. Maybe because it was... [more]-Christmas in NYC


Dec 17, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: LastMinute...

This is the last shopping weekend before Christmas. We know that some of you have been putting things off and are hoping that all your shopping will somehow "come together" at the final stretch. Well, if you need some suggestions, here are a few well-chosen last minute ideas to help you wrap things up.

With all of the ways available today for tracking time, one would think wristwatches would be obsolete. Surprisingly, they are actually enjoying a resurgence in popularity. Over the years, RainyDayMagazine have reviewed quite a few time pieces. For the 2010 Gift Guide, we have selected four of our favorites. They each have their own personality, so give accordingly:

Leatherman invented the multi-tool and has expanded its functions over time. A few years ago, they took a step back, revisited the design, and stripped out everything which was not essential. The result is the Leatherman Skeletool. This barebones multi-tools is... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide:Last Minute Gadgets


Dec 16, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: iPad App...

A few months ago, RainyDayMagazine was accepted into the Adobe Beta program for their new tools for publishing digital magazines for the iPad. A few other publishers (Wired, Martha Stewart, etc...) have published a version of their magazines using these new Adobe tools. The tools are not yet available to the general public, but they are robust enough for production use.

In the process of learning how to use the Adobe tools, we took the opportunity to put together a little Gift Guide based on this month's articles. The RDM 2010 Gift Guide app just got approved by Apple for distribution in the iTunes App Store. The app is free and can be download now. You can find it by... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: iPad App


Dec 15, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: SOHO...

With more and more folks starting their own businesses, we thought we would put together a guide for those who may have a few SOHO (Small Office Home Office) friends on their gift list. When considering what to recommend, we went with suggestions which would make the SOHO work experience both more productive and more enjoyable.

With all the attention focused on killer devices such as the iPad, other innovative gear gets less mentions than they deserve. We did a review of a gadget called the Boogie Board back in September. We think this LCD drawing tablet is the sleeper gift of this holiday season. Sources tell us that... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: SOHO


Dec 14, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: Photo Bags...

How does a company improve their products when they are already the best (well, we think they are the best) in their category? They can try to make it more versatile, maybe more durable, and perhaps even more comfortable to use. We have been using Kata bags to carry our camera gear for over five years. All during this time, we have been impressed by Kata's continual drive to improve and innovate in the area of photo-gear protection.

Our staff has reviewed a lot of camera bags over the years, but we have mostly stopped reviewing bags from other makers. It is not that no one else has good camera bags, it's that we think Kata makes the best ones out there. Kata's updated line of camera bags has once again raised the bar:

  • Owl-272 Backpack - carry camera gear + everyday personal effects. The bag can be converted into a useful daypack when not using or carrying a camera.
  • Bug-203 Backpack - designed to provide quick access to the main DSLR. This pack can also accommodate a 15" laptop.
  • LighTri-314 Torso Pack - keep your DSLR in quick-draw position at all times with a "pull to shoot" opening.
  • Hybrid-531 Shoulder bags - carry and protect both still camera and video camcorder in a single bag that can be split in two. Perfect for every day use.
  • Flyby-76 Organizer - a sleek, low profile carry-on travel case designed for those who fly.

Kata has managed to reduce the weight of the foam padding used in these new bags without compromising the... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: Photo Bags


Dec 13, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: SOWA...

South of Washington Street (SOWA) is an up and coming area in Boston. A lot of the energy is from the lively arts community in the area. During the holiday season (2004, 2006) we always try to head down to the SOWA Holiday Market to see what's new.

This weekend's was SOWA Holiday Market's 7th year and it did not disappoint. When we cover shows, we typically like to highlight a couple of outstanding vendors. This year we had a really difficult time because there were SO MANY amazing ones. If you want to see them all, they are on the SOWA Holiday Market site. If you want to see the few that caught our eye, they are discussed in more detail below.

The first to stop us in our tracks was Diane Koss and her furry monsters. Her creations looked like they just walked off the set of Monsters Inc. All of Diane's products are handstitched and... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: SOWA Holiday Market


Dec 10, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: GoalMine...

People wrack their brains trying to figure out just the right holiday gift, but too often money is wasted on things that people don't need or use. In fact, 36 percent of gift recipients in 2009 planned to "re-gift" unwanted items, according to a survey by Consumer Reports. We are not big on "gift cards." In fact, we see them as a rip off. Why would you essentially give companies a free loan just because they printed up some pretty plastic cards with their logo on them? Moreover, gift cards often have fees and rules that take away from the flexibility one has with cash. If you want to give cash, give cash along with a nice card. However, while giving cash is great, how about giving something even better? How about giving cash that can grow?

Not everyone is savvy about investing money, not everyone knows how to build wealth, but there IS a new way to give a gift this holiday season that is both meaningful and actually grows in value. Set them up with a GoalMine account. How would one actually go about "giving" someone one of these as a present? GoalMine has these things called GoalPacks. They are... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: GoalMine


Dec 9, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: Photo Gear...

This year we had a chance to play with a bunch of accessories for the Nikon D90. These stood out from the pack and earned a spot on this year's RainyDay Gift Guide. Many of them have been reviewed in detail. If you need a closer look or more info, just check the write-ups in the RainyDayPhotography section.

For the creative types on your list looking to get beyond shooting with traditional lenses, the Lensbaby 3G is an ideal selective focus lens for tabletop and macro photography. This lens will compress and bend to let them find just the desired sweet focus spot, and then lock it in place with the push of a button. Once locked, they can fine-tune using the barrel focusing ring and metal posts. Perfect for those who demand complete control and... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: Photo Gear


Dec 8, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: Tools...

Have someone on your Holiday Gift list who loves to make things, works on their car, or is a DIYer around the house? Give them something that will help them enjoy what they love to do even more.

The collection we have put together is a mix of stuff we have used for years and a few items which are brand new for 2010. As always, our guiding (ha...pun) principle is "We wouldn't put it in the gift guide if... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: Tools


Dec 7, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: More Kitchen...

Yesterday we posted Part 1 of the RainyDayKitchen Holiday Gift Guide. The focus was on Ginsu knives and how much they have changed since their infomercial days. Today we finish things up with a few more hand-picked kitchen related gift suggestions.

We have been slowly shifting toward cleaner and healthy living practices, like eating less meat and more fruits and vegetables. One thing we would like to start doing is drinking more vegetable juices. Juicing is probably the easiest way to "eat" healthier. All that is needed are just... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: More Kitchen


Dec 6, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: Kitchen...

Finding a good gift for those who love to be in the kitchen is easy. Finding a great gift for them takes a bit more work. We love cooking and we love gear, so when we recommend something, you can be sure we think it is worth it. This year, for the RainyDayKitchen Gift Guide, we have assembled a collection we think will be perfect for cooks, food lovers, or are just useful for everyday.

The well-known Ginsu brand has moved upscale. Way upscale. Gone is the "infomercial" hard sell of cutting a can in half and then slicing tomatoes into ultra-thin slivers. Don't get us wrong, the Ginsu line still includes the EverSharp knives, but now it also includes higher quality lines of kitchen knives. The Ginsu Hanaita or "superior chef" series of knives are made from cryogenically cooled folded steel and are razor sharp. Their blades are made in the same manner as... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: Kitchen


Dec 3, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: Sports...

We thought a bit about what we should include in this year's RainyDaySports gift guide. We had a lot of possible suggestions on cool but expensive gear. However, with the current fiscal condition and general economy, we thought we would scale back on things with large price tags. So the general theme this year is about accessories, not big ticket items. In that spirit, we hope you enjoy the recommendations.

We looked a lot at sunglasses this year, specifically replacement lenses for Oakley's Juliet frame. There are a few third-party replacement lens makers out there, but we think the offerings from Visionary Lenses are the best. We like this company because they offer the... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: Sports


Dec 2, 2010- Rainy Day Gift Guide: Books...

It is the start of the Holiday shopping season and we are back with our series of RainyDay Gift Guides. The first one is both the easiest and the hardest to do. It is easy because we come across so many good books every year. It is hard because we also want to mention books from previous years which we think would make awesome gifts. This year we've decide to recommend a blend. Some on the list we've mentioned before, but others are new for this year. Like all of past our suggestions, we've looked at all of our suggestions first hand. Also know this...they wouldn't be on our list if we wouldn't want them under our tree :-)

For the photographer on your gift list, getting a good how-to book can be even better than getting a new lens. Whether it be mastering their Nikon D90, creative use of a lighting system, learning new... [more]-Holiday Gift Guide: Books


Dec 1, 2010- Paradise City Arts Festival...

With Thanksgiving over, the Holiday shopping season has officially started. We got an early jump when we spent a day at the Paradise City Arts Festival in Marlborough, Mass. We are not big on craft shows, but we have been to this show a few times over the years because this festival features works which are at a level of artistry and craftsmanship much higher than the typical fair.

We didn't have to go very far into the show before we happened upon something we really liked. Ken Salem of Salem Board & Beam (Northampton, MA) was talking about his line of furniture made form salvaged and reclaimed hardwoods. We listened and chatted with Ken for a while about what makes them different. We learned that 80% of the lumber used in the creation of his pieces is from reclaimed and salvaged wood sources. Because of that, every piece of furniture has a back story. How cool is that?

Of course, for those with a more modern bent, there are furniture makers at the show, like TrebbeModern, that will satisfy those cravings (we are partial to them because we love "making" pieces ourselves). We love the subtle curves, simple lines, and functional forms. Don't let the... [more]-Paradise City Arts Festival: Marlborough

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