We knew when I got pregnant that this summer in Maine would be a bit of a wash. We hope to spend the majority of our future summers there, but with no clean running water and no bathroom, being there while uber-pregnant or with a brand new baby was not happening. We stayed through the July 4th festivities, then headed home to wait for the baby. With Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard plans taking up most of August, we didn’t make it back to Maine until September 1st.
Jonathan bought us a camping toilet….with a tent. Ah luxury. With 6 people in a one room cabin, we parked it out on the back deck for “privacy”….you just had to watch the wind. A south wind blows the tent right off of you! I should have taken some pictures of this for Instagram stories, but at the time I was too horrified to publicly laugh at it yet. As much as I want a bathroom, I love that our kids will have these memories and not all luxury resorts. Although we like those too, of course.
We didn’t bring Cannonball because of projected 6-foot seas on the way up, but we had so much fun on our little Boston Whaler. You don’t need a big boat to get out on the water and have fun, even with kids. We used the whaler every day and it was a blast. We like to take it over to our neighboring island, North Haven, where our favorite local restaurant is, Calderwood Hall. They have the cutest local market inside, a kids play corner, the best pizza, and North Haven Brewery is right downstairs.
River is learning to help on the whaler and its the cutest thing. He gets the fenders and lines ready and hops off onto the dock to tie us up. I love raising our children to fully participate in the work we put into having fun. Because we do have a LOT of fun, and it often takes a fair amount of work to make it all happen.
There are sets of sliding doors on either side of the cabin, and we wake up in the morning and open them both up. From then on we spend most of our day outside, which is amazing for kids. They have their “hornet” motorized cars, a tree fort, bikes, and “Mr Snoogledoogle” the kid-sized John Deere that they tool around on. The focus this time was all on the “off road track” they built for their hornets and bikes.
We try to never miss a daytime low tide on our beach. We can spend hours down there hunting for crabs, sea-glass, and other treasures. River finds me heart rocks by the armload, which I think is pretty much the sweetest thing ever. We generally spend a good 45 minutes making boats out of mussel shells, then seeing how many little snail shells we can fit in them and still get them to float. Skipping rocks. Naming hermit crabs. Catching bigger crabs. Climbing rocks. Looking for starfish in the rocky tide pools.
In spite of all of this, the boys still watch at least one movie a day. Hey, nobody’s perfect.
We love to bake bread in Maine! Something about the ocean air makes the dough rise perfectly. We usually wake up, bake bread, then eat it all day so that we have to bake more before dinner. Van loves to help because, like me, he loves to eat the dough. The rest of the family thinks this is gross, but it doesn’t stop us! (I’m pretty sure the dough actually continues to rise in your stomach..anyone know about this? Van never wants to eat dinner after…but again, we are weirdly addicted, there’s no stopping us 😉
We were expecting some crazy Labor Day traffic returning to Boston, so we booked a room for the night halfway home in Portland, one of my favorite cities (towns). We stayed at the The Press Autograph Hotel, ranked #1 for Portland on Tripadvisor and it was amazing! Best of all it was just down the street from our favorite Maine restaurant The Honey Paw, and my absolute favorite children’s store of all time (seriously, no exaggeration) Little. Its so nice to not rush back, and I love that my husband and I agree when it comes to impromptu nights in fabulous hotels.