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Good Living

Bay beaches keep a record of natural as well as human history.

There’s history in them thar shards

Bay beaches keep record of history. Some of these bits are treasures.     Look and you may find not only sea-washed glass but also pieces of pottery from the China trade, bits of everyday ceramics from the early 1900s or clay pipes from the 1700s.     Learn to read the history of sea pottery this Saturday. Dr. Patricia Samford, director of the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory, offers a free workshop from 1-4pm Aug. 1 at Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum in St. Leonard (410-586-8501).

Our beautiful swimmers are starting to run

Dennis Doyle’s cautious Sporting Life report that crabbing finally “may be improving” is seconded by commercial crabbers, who are notorious pessimists. Better still, we’ve seen chicken-neckers pulling in crabs at local piers.     Chicken-necking for Chesapeake Bay blue crabs requires you spend a quiet morning or afternoon alongside the Bay or one of its rivers. It gives you the fun of catching wily crustaceans. Then you get to eat them.

Four easy recipes to savor into darker days

Summer produce has arrived in abundance. Now’s the time to preserve can, pickle and ferment to keep your table local long past summer. Preserving is the trend of the times, and for good reason.

It’s hard work, but someone has to do it

This is one of those tough jobs. Tougher than ever now that crab catches are no longer abundant so that you’ll pay for the luxury of eating a Chesapeake Bay crab cake. But somebody’s got to do, so it might as well be you.     Start with a notebook for recording your tasting results. Here are your judging guidelines. Rank each crabcake you taste from 1 to 5:     1. Most important: Is it made from Chesapeake Bay blue crab? Ask!

From Major League to local teams, the nation’s pastime is alive and well

“I see great things in baseball,” wrote America’s poet Walt Whitman 169 years ago. “It’s our game — the American game.     “It has the snap, go, fling of the American atmosphere.”     Baseball lays out an inviting green carpet on which nine leaping athletes chase each other while throwing, catching and hitting a white ball. They take the field full of hope, follow the rules, trust in skill and and believe luck will bless them.

Put up some Dilly Beans

At the farmers market and in the garden, summer has boldly arrived. Succulent cucumbers, herbs and peas are ready for a feast.     Take some time to put up that abundant harvest. Can it, preserve it and ferment it in ways that will save and enhance the flavors of summer. Preserving provides quick, easy toppings and snacks that are a bright reminder of summer freshness for months to come.

July’s two full moons are prime viewing times

Does a full or new moon woo you? Perhaps draw you to follow its reflection in warm, shallow waters of the Chesapeake?     Homo sapiens are not alone in lunar motivation. It’s shared by that most antique of species, the horseshoe crab, which chooses spring and summer high tides during those moon phases to mate along many Bay beaches

When you’ve found a Chesapeake beach, you’ve found a treasure

From shells to polished pebbles to driftwood to fossils, Bay beaches aren’t just for sunbathing and fishing.

From derelict ruins to still-active beacons, these fixtures of the water continue to light up the imagination

Chesapeake lighthouses have marked safe passage for sailors since the 1800s. Many stand still, reachable by land or water, and welcome your visit.     Turkey Point Lighthouse, built in 1833 near the head of the Bay, is the tallest — at 35 feet — of the 74 Chesapeake lighthouses. Located in Elk Neck State Park, it was built by noted Bay lighthouse builder John Donohoo.