Yearly Archives: 2023

Hummingbird Migration in the Mad River Valley

Posted on Wednesday, September 13, 2023 by 15 comments

Members love reporting wildlife sightings on Front Porch Forum. Recently, hummingbirds took over the Mad River Valley Forum after one member shared a project tracking the August-September migration through Vermont. Dozens of responses came in (and counting!) over the last four days. Here are just a few…

  • “2-3 females and several juveniles are still stocking up for their trip, but the males packed their bags and left days ago. Thanks to Carol for providing the link!”
  • “A male hummingbird visited our feeder this morning on White Pine Drive.”
  • “Just saw a hummer at my potted flower urns.”
  • “Still hanging around Lois Lane this morning.”
  • “Hey, Hummingbird lovers, We saw one today at our coneflowers. Looked like a female. I think traveling thru.”

Further, these hummingbird sightings have spawned an interest in Monarch butterflies too…

  • “Several hummingbirds are still active on Cider Hill, up at about 1600 feet. They spend much of their time at the Mexican Sunflowers (Tithonia) right now – which should keep blooming until a frost. Our trumpet honeysuckle is still blooming for them, too. Oh, and the Monarchs are loving the Echinacea!”
  • “Now that we’ve learned what’s happening with the hummingbirds, what has happened to the Monarchs? Usually I’d be seeing them about now and haven’t seen any. Did all the rain do them in?”

Garden Produce Overload

Posted on Thursday, August 31, 2023 by No comments yet

It’s easy to get the impression on Front Porch Forum that many Vermonters are hobby gardeners. Members offer produce generously across FPF – it feels like an online farmer’s market this month!

  • “3 dozen free cukes on a table in front of our house on Church St. Help yourself!! Please leave the table!” – Wendy, Bristol
  • “Free Sunflower Heads… I have cut down all of my sunflowers and removed the “heads” if you would like the seeds for your garden next year… or your birds, furry friends… come pick them up!” – Susan, Brandon
  • “Elderberries for the Taking … Hello again! My elderberry tree is at full bloom again and the berries are ripe and ready to be harvested. I can’t use them all so come on by and cut some.” – Jennifer in Grand Isle 
  • “Basil Anyone? … My garden did not provide a lot of food for me this year, but I do have an abundance of basil! I am happy to share. If you would like some, please reach out.” – Joanna, Richmond
  • “Rhubard & Little Green Apples … You’re welcome to take small amounts of rhubarb, green onions, mint, or little green apples (often wormy, if you have a use for them), from sidewalk or tree.” – Dick, Village Green

And this member put it well in a poem… 

Lock the doors
and turn out
the lights.
Pull the shades,
close the blinds
and draw the curtains.
Hide the kids
in the tub,
do not breathe
and be very,
very, quiet.
Up the steps
comes a neighbor
with a brown
paper bag…

Zucchini… By Charlie in Marshfield

If you have garden beds overflowing, consider sharing the love on your FPF!

On another note… This year has been especially challenging for farmers due to the torrential rains and floods of July, plus a severe frost back in May. Many of Vermont’s farms and orchards are suffering crop loss. In the spirit of eating locally, growing food and offering it to your neighbors, please go out and support your local farmers any way you can! 

“Makeup for a Special Occassion” from FPF to RumbleStrip

Posted on Tuesday, August 22, 2023 by No comments yet

Check out this romantic way to use Front Porch Forum. It’s too delightful not to share. Read this episode from RumbleStrip, a Vermont-made podcast that is top-ranked by The New Yorker and The New York Times, here.

Or listen to the episode on Spotify, here.

“A couple weeks ago on Hardwick’s Front Porch Forum, someone called Tiana asked if there was anyone who could help her with her hair and makeup for an important date with her boyfriend“… read more.

Keep Going Vermont Strong

Posted on Thursday, July 27, 2023 by No comments yet

The 2023 floods brought much devastation to Vermont. The recovery will be long and difficult, but not without signs of hope. Here are some snapshots of inspiring stories we’ve seen of neighbors coming together…

  • “We have been stranded since Monday – no access to food, medical care, etc. However, the bridge that has been built is a human one. Our neighbors have all banded together in helping each other in any way needed.”
    • Paul, Berlin
  • “I have a Plethora of dehumidifiers now. That was quite the outpouring. Already feeling dryer inside. Thank you so much Waterbury neighbors.”
    • Jim, Waterbury
  • “Just popping in to say I have a working, unflooded car with 4 seats and spare time this weekend! I can’t fit much in the way of Stuff, but if anyone needs rides to work, appointments, errands, etc- please feel free to shoot me an email, I’ve been checking every couple hours lately.”
    • Grace, Montpelier
  • “Our road was hit very hard and it was not an easy job. Not only that, but the sense of community on our street was nothing like I have ever experienced. I met more of my neighbors in 36 hours than I had in the three years since we moved here. Me and my family received numerous check-ins, offers of places to park or stay, offers of food and water. The feeling of support all around definitely made weathering this whole experience much easier. Words can’t express how thankful I am to live on such a wonderful road surrounded by so many wonderful neighbors!
    • Nikola, Middlesex
  • “I was driving though Plainfield, hoping to find an alternative route to Hardwick, when I spotted the sweetest sign in front of a black plastic bucket with flowers inside, at the end of a driveway. The cardboard sign stated “Bad day? Free flowers.”
    • Rose, Woodbury
  • Hoping to find the man who came to my door last night, during the storm, to tell me that there were sparks right near the side of my house and he was worried about a fire to my house. A huge tree had fallen and turned out there was a live wire under the tree that was sparking. The fire department came immediately and took care of everything; they were great!! I am hoping this man may have told some friends the story and they might read this and I can find out who this kind man was who saved my house. I want to be able to thank him!!!”
    • Joan, Woodbury
  • “To the off-duty rescue worker who helped get a neighbor out of her swamped apartment. Even carried her dog to safety. Appreciation to the canoe couple who helped a neighbor on Franklin St with belongings and waited patiently for the flooded neighbor to get her things and self together to leave. Thank you to the guy who carried items out of an apartment to dry ground. Every person who walked flooded Franklin St and was asked for help, stopped to assist people. Thank you to all who asked if anyone needed help. Things were happening so fast and those caring folks were needed to do just what they did in that moment. You assisted many and asked nothing. Molto Gracia.”
    • Barbara in Montpelier

Check out FPF’s new emergency feature: the Regional Disaster Response Board. It’s designed to facilitate mutual aid across communities and share vital updates. Just post to your local Forum, and any disaster-response-related postings will show up on your region’s board.

If you’re looking for ways to support neighbors, check out the Regional Disaster Response Board today. You’ll see requests for assistance (along with many updates) from all the Forums across your county.

NEW: Regional Disaster Response Boards

Posted on Tuesday, July 18, 2023 by 3 comments

FPF just launched an emergency feature to facilitate mutual aid among Vermonters and help communities support each other in recovering from the July 2023 floods.

View your region’s Disaster Response Board.

The board brings together in one place all disaster-related postings in a given county (or group of counties). Members have access to any county or counties where they currently have an FPF account.

To add a posting to this board, simply post to your local Forum. If your posting is related to disaster response, it will appear on the board shortly.

Who wants to deal with a broken kitchen sink?

Posted on Thursday, June 22, 2023 by No comments yet

These handy-people recommended on FPF do! Many members turn to FPF to ask neighbors who they use to fix faucets, screen doors, broken heaters, you name it… Then, members share their positive experience back on FPF. See these success stories below. 

What do you have that needs professional fixing? Ask for recommendations on your FPF, and check out FPF’s Community Directory with over 13,000 listings of local businesses in all categories! 

  • In Middlebury… “A valve malfunction shut down my kitchen sink and Shawn Frost, previously recommended here on FPF, went above and beyond in his efforts to get me out of my quandary the very same day at no small inconvenience to him and his plans. He is very experienced across the board in all things related to plumbing, pleasant, efficient, and professional, so I too am happy to recommend him.”
  • In South Burlington…We want to let everyone know that we had a great experience finding a handy person on FPF this week and would like to recommend him. Do not hesitate to contact Craig Bujold for any of your home projects. He’s a super nice person that works in Human Services and can tackle projects with competence and a smile.”
  • In St. Johnsbury… Several weeks ago I found a listing here on FPF for a handyman and I reached out to Isaac Poe. Now I am back to tell you what a positive experience it is to work with him. He was very responsive, on time, reasonably priced but most of all he did a high quality job. I could not be happier with the work he did for me. I highly recommend him.”

A pleasant way to sell a bike…

Posted on Thursday, June 15, 2023 by No comments yet

A sweet note from Sheryl in Waterbury:

“It has been many years since I have used Front Porch Forum and I have had the best experience selling my bicycle today! Friendly emails and very nice people! I am grateful for this community service.”

Want a Response? Try Front Porch Forum!

Posted on Monday, June 12, 2023 by No comments yet

Members get an amazing response when they post on Front Porch Forum. Check out these examples just in the first week of June!

  • Thank you to the over 2 dozen neighbors who wrote with suggestions about my hose leak! Turns out I needed to replace the anti-siphon valve. Multiple people sent helpful notes that walked me thru the process, and voila! No more geyser shooting out the top of the spigot and around the hose! Shout out to Martins for having the inexpensive part in stock. Gratitude to all of you who wrote, to Martin’s Hardware, and to Front Porch Forum! 
    • Porter in Bristol

  • “I want to express my thanks to those individuals who replied to my recent FPF posting requesting pressure washing help. I had nearly 30 replies (!) either offering to provide the service or making a recommendation.
    • Lee Ann in Salisbury

  • Wow, within minutes we had four offers of people willing to lend us their tampers for our patio project. And more offers still coming in! What a great community! And what a great resource Front Porch Forum is!”
    • Doug and Renee in East Montpelier

Local Meet Ups

Posted on Monday, June 5, 2023 by No comments yet

People make great use of their local Front Porch Forum every day. Check out this recent posting from a mother on the Wallingford Forum:

  • “As nicer weather comes, I’m wondering if anyone would be interested in joining a semi-official playground meetup? I have an almost-3-year-old who loves swinging and 9-month-old who loves hanging out.”

And another from a neighbor in the Wimington forum:

  • “Wow!  I received so many recommendations for local in-person book clubs!  I plan to attend most of them.  The support of this Forum is really wonderful.  Thank you so much!”

Here’s to more real in-person connections in our increasingly online lives!