Spending the Morning Strawberry Picking at Maxwell’s Farm in Cape Elizabeth

I originally posted this blog a few years ago and have updated it for the current strawberry season. I picked my strawberries this morning and I’m getting ready for another round of pie making today.

One of the many joys of summer is that it is berry filled. The end of June is the kick-off to strawberry season here in Maine. There is nothing better than enjoying them freshly picked, but you have to be quick. At only 3 to 4 weeks long, the strawberry season is short, like most things in Maine.

The strawberry season generally runs from the end of June to the end of July. This year was a really late start because of our rainy, cool spring but they’re finally ripe now.

Last year on July 4th weekend, my youngest daughter and I ventured out to Maxwell’s Farm in Cape Elizabeth and picked a heaping flat of strawberries. Fresh strawberries are amazing, but you need to enjoy them as soon as possible after picking. The shelf life is short-lived which is generally not a problem at my house because they are devoured rapidly especially around the Fourth when we usually have a full house. Continue reading

Going to yard sales this weekend? Here are some helpful tips.

My parents spend most Saturday mornings on the yard sale circuit. Trust me, it’s a thing. I’m a fan myself although I don’t go as often as they do. Maybe someday. My husband and I did make a pit stop to the annual ten-mile yard sale in Cornville on our way up to The Forks last spring. It’s one of those must do destinations for yard sale aficionados.

While we never did find the main drag, we spent a few enjoyable hours poking around some of the side roads leading up to the sale as we passed through Skowhegan. I even scored a $5 pair of ice skates and a $2 DVD of The Purge so the hunt was successful. Although after watching the Purge, I’m not sure it was a complete win.

This weekend marks the 35th anniversary of the 10 mile yard sale. The weather isn’t looking promising but that doesn’t stop the bargain hunters. The sale goes on rain or shine.

Thinking of going to a few yard sales? Here are some things to keep in mind if you do:

  • Hydrate. Be sure to bring water with you on the trip. It’s easy to lose track of time when wandering through tables of treasures. Snacks are always good too.
  • Bring Bug Spray and Sunscreen. Or, bring an umbrella and mud boots. Keep an eye on the weather and adjust accordingly.
  • Wear a Hat. I actually forgot this one on our trip, but serendipity stepped in and I found someone selling a new one with tags for $.50. Perfect timing!
  • Carry Small Bills and Change. There’s nothing worse than finding that must have item but the seller can’t make change.
  • Take a Reusable Shopping Bag. You need to be able to carry all your purchases.
  • Buy Only What You Need. The prices can be amazing at yard sales, but it’s not a bargain if you don’t need it.
  • Prepare for Lemonade Stands and Bake Sales. I always bringing a little extra cash to buy from the cutest little entrepreneurs out there.
  • Barter only if overpriced. This is a personal choice. I’m not a fan of haggling unless I truly feel something is overpriced by yard sale standards. I’ve been on the other side of yard sales. They are a lot of work and generally things are already priced incredibly low.
  • Know Your Sizes. If you’re looking for something for a specific space or place in your home, write down the sizes and bring a measuring tape. Using your best guess may work but it’s risky.
  • Think Creatively. My favorite part of going to tag sales is finding something that can be re-purposed or reused in a new way.

There are many other tips and tricks to successful yard sale excursions but there’s truly only one tip that you need to know. Have fun!

Do you like to go to yard sales?

#AtoZChallenge | O is for Ocean Views along Marginal Way in Ogunquit

We hike a lot and, as I blogged about earlier in the challenge, coastal hikes are my favorite. But, depending on the trail, they can also be challenging and restrictive if you have mobility issues. If you’re looking for a place to go for beautiful ocean views, without putting on your hiking shoes, then Marginal Way in Ogunquit is you’re place.

Ogunquit literally means “Beautiful Place by The Sea” in the language of the Algonquin Indians. It’s truth in advertising at it’s best.

Marginal Way is an easy walk along a paved trail that runs parallel to the shoreline. There are a few inclines, but nothing overly strenuous.  It allows you to get up close to the rocky shore without actually scrambling on the rocks. There are a few access points from the trail leading down to the water if you are a little more adventurous. Continue reading

#AtoZChallenge | L is for Lighthouse and a Lonely Snowman

Portland Breakwater Lighthouse is more commonly known as Bug Light due to its diminutive size.  Plus, bug light just sounds so much cooler. It is also the place to go if you want to fly a kite as the wind is wicked by the water. I’ve blogged about it before in my post Kite Festival at Bug Light Park, South Portland.

I also returned to the park again when trying to launch a homemade Castiel kite during our Gishwhes Scavenger Hunt this past August. You probably need to be a fan of the TV show Supernatural to understand that previous sentence. Sadly, it’s not even my first reference to Supernatural during this blogging challenge. I’m a bit obsessed. But, you don’t need to be a fan of the show to get the gist.

Bug Light Park is the best place to go fly a kite. Continue reading

#AtoZChallenge | K is for Kettle Cove in Cape Elizabeth

While a popular summer destination, I found the quieter winter scene at Kettle Cove in Cape Elizabeth especially beautiful during a recent visit. The sun gleaming off the water, a persistent patch of snow by the edge of the sand and an abandoned lobster trap make it a true Maine winter scene.

This was my first visit to the beach area at Kettle Cove, but my daughter and I did enjoy a delicious lunch at the Kettle Cove Creamery & Cafe a few summers ago which I blogged about here:  Serendipity and Strawberries lead us to a stop at the Kettle Cove Creamery & Cafe.  Unfortunately, it’s closed during the winter so we didn’t get to enjoy a second visit on this trip. Continue reading