Greetings dear friends and kind readers and welcome back for a mid-January visit here on the Front Porch where everyone's chatting about the Patriots, the Super Bowl and next week's super blood, full crimson wolf moon and total lunar eclipse! Now that was a mouthful. Let's hope for clear skies and maybe a trip to the Frosty Drew Observatory? 

Let's begin this week with by sending a teddy bear off to baby Zeke Daniel Waterman, the first son and first child born to Brooke (Arnold) and Dean Waterman of Bradford, and the first Westerly baby of the new year. Yay! Baby Zeke was born on Jan. 1 at 4:12 p.m., weighing in at 6 pounds, 6 ounces. Brooke is a much-loved teacher at State Street School and Dean is an officer with the Westerly Police Department. A big warm welcome to baby Zeke, who is blessed with a pretty amazing extended family from paternal grandparents Michelle and William Clarke, of Charlestown, and Dean Waterman, of Exeter, to his maternal grandparents Rose and Zeke Arnold, of Westerly, and his uncles, Josh and Luke Arnold. Great family.

What fun venturing into Stonington Borough in a cold winter's night where we were warmed up in no time at the La Grua Center where the charming writer Sigrid Nunez, the current writer in residence at the Merrill House in Stonington, delighted those gathered by reading a passage from her gorgeous book, "The Friend," and by answering questions from fans. How wonderful to hear her urge people to read more poetry, and how wonderful to see sculptor Douglas Rice again, to meet his wife, Cynthia Elliot, to meet Willard Spiegelman and Geoffrey Little, and to bump into my friends, Kim and Ian Newbury.

Later, we stopped by the fabulous Water Street Cafe, which was bustling and cozy and fun and were treated to a most memorable and divine dinner thanks to chef-owner Walter Houlihan, and his wife/business partner Stephanie Hayes-Houlihan. What a wonderful person she is!

Last week I promised I'd finish telling you all about the lovely Delaney-Bliven wedding which took place on New Year’s Eve at Haversham and united friends from far and near in a perfect kick off to the new year. The darling bride, Erica Delaney Bliven, is the daughter of Bob Delaney and Valerie Ahern (which means she is also the niece of my dear pal, Ursula Evelyn Rose Ahern); and the handsome groom, Aaron Bliven, is the son of Sam Bliven and the late Mary Bliven (which means he is the nephew of Sandy Bliven and grandson of cute Carmella.) Keeping it all in the family, the groomsmen were Gus Brucker, Kevin Rogers, Chris Pizza, Kevin Gomes, Dan Crowley and my own dear son, Sam III, who flew in from L.A. with his pal, Kelsey Day, to be best man for his longtime pal. Said the new Mrs. Bliven, "We had the best night ever." Attending with Erica were her maid of honor Kellie Williams, her man of honor Ben Delaney, and her bridesmaids Alyssa DeFranco, Andrea Gervasini, Egle Beyer, Rebecca Curioso and Olivia Smith.

Best wishes to the newlyweds and ciao bella!

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