Kathy Foran - REALTY EXECUTIVES Boston West



Posted by Kathy Foran on 10/8/2017

Massachusetts is a gold mine of fun and historical things to do— and during all four seasons, from the Berkshires to the arm of Massachusetts. There are things to do for families, couples, large groups, and singles. Let’s take a look at some of the best things to do in Western Massachusetts in the summer.

  1. Outdoor activities in Northern Berkshires, MA
Including whitewater rafting, zip lining, kayaking, fishing, wildlife tours, butterfly conservatory and much more. And check out the scenic railway that runs from North Adams to Adams, MA. Northern Berkshires, MA
  1. Monument Mountain in Great Barrington, MA
Hike this monumental mountain and take in views that may just take your breath away. You’ll see sights of the mountainous Berkshires and the Housatonic River Valley and make sure to explore Squaw Peak.
  1. Yankee Candle Factory in Deerfield, MA
Visit the Yankee Candle Factory and tour/shop the Bavarian village, a Christmas wonderland all year round. After you make it through the village, check out Wax Works where kids and adults can create their own candles. But most of all, take in all the scents that this flagship store has to offer. You will find seasonal scents all year round; their current scenes and you may even be in luck to find your favorite scent that is no longer sold in retail stores.
  1. Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, MA
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame is a great place to visit on a hot summer day and perfect for kids and adults who love the game of basketball. Tour the museum, attend an event (on select days), and host your child’s birthday party or an event, and much more.
  1. Six Flags New England in Agawam, MA
Once known as Riverside, Six Flags New England is the largest theme park in New England. There are rides and activities for all ages and plenty of food options. If you are looking for a day full of family fun then this is the place to go. So what are you waiting for?





Posted by Kathy Foran on 6/5/2016

The variety of candles on the market has never been greater. When it comes to shopping for candles, however, a bigger selection isn't always a good thing. Many of us have, at one time or another, come down with a case of option paralysis looking at a wall full of Yankee Candles. Aside from choosing a fragrance, there are several other options to consider. Which candles burn the longest? Which type of wax works best? And, unfortunately, now we must even find out which candles are safe for us to inhale. Types of Candle Wax There are three main types of wax widely available in stores today: paraffin, soy, and beeswax. Each type has its ups and downs, but we'll break them down so you can choose one that's right for you.

  • Beeswax - This type of wax comes straight from the hive, making it a safe and natural wax to burn in your home. It also burns for the longest duration of the three types of wax, which is good because it can be pricey. It's great for lighting a room and burns as a bright white color. But, if you spill it walking to the fusebox during a power outage good luck getting that sticky beeswax out of your carpet. Also, beeswax candles do not mix well with added fragrances, so the selection will be narrow.
  • Paraffin - If beeswax is the natural, healthy choice for candles then paraffin is the processed, junkfood option.  Paraffin candles can be very affordable, but the cheap price tag comes at the cost of additives and artificial fragrances that you might not want to breathe in. Paraffin also tends to burn quickly, so if your candles aren't just for show you might find yourself spending a lot on them anyway. One benefit of paraffin is that it combines easily with fragrances so there is a great variety of scents available.
  • Soy - Perhaps a good in-between choice for candle lovers is the soy candle. Since they're made from soybeans, soy candles are a sustainable, biodegradable option. Spilled wax cleans up fairly easily, and soy combines well with other fragrances, so there are a great variety of scented candles available on the market. Soy wax is soft, however, which means you won't find many candles that aren't in jars that you could pop into your favorite candle holder.
Types of Wicks Wire, cotton, and wood, oh wow... Who knew there were so many types of wicks out there?  You can find all of these options in stores, but which one is right for you?
  • Wire wicks - These wicks have a metal zinc core that sits straight in a candle and burns evenly. The idea of burning a metal wick doesn't seem safe, but they are harmless and do not emit dangerous gases into the air.
  • Cotton wicks - The most common wicks on the market are made from cotton. They're cheap to produce and are often braided, which looks nice. They can sometimes burn unevenly, though, and require trimming.
  • Wooden wicks - The new wick on the block. These fit in with the rustic look that many homeowners are now going for. To further that point, there are also crackling wood wicks that emit either a pleasing or distracting crackling noise while they burn. You probably won't need to trim these wicks, but they are often used in higher-end candles, so expect to pay more.




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