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Articles by Sandra Olivetti Martin

Create your holiday kingdom for the Greater Annapolis Lego Open

The holiday kingdom is a world built from imagination. How do you imagine it?
    Is the holiday kingdom your church on Christmas Eve? Or your home on Christmas morning?
    Or is Chanukah your holiday, and your menorah an eight-branched tree with every branch tipped with flame?
    Or Kwanza, with dancing and drums?
    Add LEGOS to your imagination and build the holiday kingdom as you see it.
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That’s a blessing I’m seeking to count this Thanksgiving

If you’ve seen the brand-new movie Arrival (and if you haven’t, do, but more about that later), you know that feelings find expression in different ways. Very different languages are the movie’s subjects. But there’s more to the irrepressible drive than language. We sentient beings (including Heptapods) are compelled to impress ourselves on the world, by whatever means we choose.
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Memory is a timeless place

The most important story in the world is one you know best: your own.
    Lifelong Annapolitan Ralph Crosby tells his in Memoirs of a Main Street Boy.
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Libby, McNeill & Libby of ­Morton, Illinois

Would you cook you own pumpkin?
    We who do are a minority. Pie makers will guard the locations of their cherry tree the way fishers do honey holes. But when the time comes to bake pumpkin pies, they buy their pumpkin in a can.
    “I’ve tried fresh and I didn’t like the texture,” says Lyn Laviana, who bakes the pumpkin pie I wish I did.
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How to manage the perfect ending for your ­Thanksgiving Feast

The year is fast unfolding. In less than two weeks, we celebrate Thanksgiving.
    Food, family and gratitude for our blessings are the focus of that holiday. Food brings the family together and the gratitude forth. So about this time every year, we begin planning for the Thanksgiving feast.
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The Patuxents used to live here; some still do

How hard is it to prove a hunch?
    It took 75 holes a foot deep by a foot wide followed by five three-by-five-foot excavation pits dug with exacting symmetry in the unyielding earth to document the late naturalist Mitzi Poole’s suspicion. Her girlhood swimming hole on Battle Creek might, she believed, be a Native American site.
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For Annapolis Maritime Museum, a giant step across the creek

With the flourish of a pen, Annapolis Maritime Museum took a giant step into the future. From two-thirds of an acre — its Eastport campus on Back Creek — the 26-year-old environmental education center grew to almost 13 acres.
    Like a small snake swallowing an elephant, the Museum made the ambitious expansion in a single bite. That bite is the Ellen Moyer Nature Park.
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Deputy director Sherrod Sturrock steps up to lead

Calvert Marine Museum keeps track of the ages. You learn about the prehistoric Chesapeake there by encountering creatures that lived in that shallow, warm ocean and on its shores. About the humans who followed ages later, and how the water enriched their lives. About the creatures that evolved, died and live in Chesapeake Bay and the Patuxent River.
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The cookie moms and girls of Central Maryland have got you covered

Are you hungry for Girl Scout cookies?    
    If you haven’t stashed boxes in your freezer, you’ll be glad to know that now through December 7 is cookie season for the Girl Scouts of Central Maryland. Anne Arundel County is part of that Council, as are Baltimore City and County and Howard County.
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Study your ballot at www.vote411.org

Who’s on your ballot?     This year’s contentious top-line race has obscured who’s who — and who stands for what — in the down-ticket races. Yet from local government on up, the winners in these elections have far more immediate say on how we live our daily lives.
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