#atozchallenge | Q is for Clam Digging for Quahogs

Having recently finished a post on blueberry picking with my grandmother, it got me a bit nostalgic. It brought back memories of another food foraging experience from my youth. My dad’s side of the family spent many summer days along the Maine coast clam digging for quahogs or hen clams.

I was lucky growing up. My mother’s parents lived next to the ocean so I spent my summers at the beach. Their home became a meeting spot for family members some of whom came for sunbathing and for others who came for clam digging.

While I was mainly a spectator, I did try clam digging a little bit as I got older, but I didn’t have the same knack for it as my Grandmother, Dad and Uncle. They were talented and could harvest clams like crazy. I was lucky if I walked away with more than ten. I guess those clam digging genes skip a generation. Continue reading

#atozchallenge | P is for Port City Music Hall and Bruce in the USA

My husband and I tried something new this past Valentine’s Day. We went to Port City Music Hall in Portland to listen to a Bruce Springsteen tribute band: Bruce in the USA. We’ve both been huge fans of Bruce for a long time, and have been fortunate enough to have seen him on many of his tours, but we weren’t sure what to expect from a cover band and I was a little nervous. In my hesitation, I waited until the morning of Valentine’s day to actually buy our tickets which meant we paid more for them. This didn’t sit well with my coupon loving soul but what can you do? It was my own fault.

It was the first time we had ever been to Port City Music Hall and the venue was great. It’s a large open space and, other than a small VIP seating area off the left, it was a standing room, general admissions event. I’m not sure if all their shows are setup the same way or not. I’ve read online that for some of their events, such as a comedy show, they do put out seats. But for this rocking evening, it was VIP or standing room. We were standing. Continue reading

Fourth of July Banner

#atozchallenge | O is for Ocean Park Fourth of July Parade

An article in the Boston Globe by Christopher Muther, “From Maine to Cuba, the hot places for travel in 2016” offered Ocean Park, Maine as a suggested vacation destination this year. It’s an eclectic list and, although I’d love to visit any of the vacation spots included in the article, Ocean Park is one trek I happily make every year.

The article highlights that the best time to go to Ocean Park is July 4th because of their annual holiday parade. I grew up in Saco, a neighboring town, and my family still has a home in the Ferry Beach area just up the road from Ocean Park so I understand the appeal. The whole parade experience feels like a throwback to an earlier time, as does the town. Continue reading

#atozchallenge | N is for Naples in the Winter

One thing I accepted long ago was that to live in Maine means to drive a lot, especially if I want to keep in touch with friends and family who are spread throughout New England and, in some cases, even farther. I could never lease a car. I’d go over my mileage in the first month.

Many of my drives involve meeting a friend “half-way” so that we can get together and have some fun. Since moving back to Maine, I’ve been making regular trips to Portsmouth, Kittery, and Newburyport, to connect with friends who live down in Massachusetts. I’ve become extremely knowledgeable on places to go and things to do in those areas. I could even rename my blog, “Weekends in Maine and towns off of Route 95 Heading South”. Continue reading

#atozchallenge | M is for the Maine Diner

We have a permitted driver in our house and, per Maine law, she needs to drive seventy hours with a licensed driver before she can take her driver’s license test. Seventy seems like an easy enough number, but it’s painfully difficult to get to when juggling the rest of life’s demands. We tried to wing it for a while, but six months in and with less than thirty hours logged on the driving sheet, we knew we had to get more serious about finding time for her to drive.

My husband started taking her out on longer weekend drives. They pick a diner, or other lunch spot, that is about an hour and a half away. She drives there and back, gets 3 hours on her driving log, and they get to try a new place. They usually head up north, somewhere along the coast. Continue reading