Looking for free stuff? Here’s a list of free monthly activities to do in Maine for 2017.

Last September, my family and I did the Living Well Spending Zero challenge from Ruth Soukup. As part of the challenge, we spent minimal money for the entire month. No groceries, no entertainment, no take-out. We allowed ourselves a small amount of cash at the start of the month for minor necessities, and activities that had already been planned, but that was it. We ate through the food in our refrigerator and pantry, learned to ration our seltzer, and went to some free events like the Fork Food Lab grand opening.

Overall, we did a great job, or at least until the last day of the month when our cat came down with a UTI, and we had to do an emergency visit to the vet complete with x-rays, anesthesia, and multiple antibiotics, all of which negated most of our savings from our zero spend month. Still it was a fun, creative experiment and one we would definitely try again. More importantly, our cat, other than one minor setback, is doing great now. Continue reading

Feeding the 5000 event held in Portland, Maine to bring attention to Food Waste

Portland proved that there is such a thing as a free lunch during their recent Feeding the 5000 event in Monument Square where from 11:00 am – 4:00 pm on Friday, October 7th volunteers served up soup made from vegetables gleaned from local farms.

What is gleaning you ask? You may not be asking, but I was unfamiliar with the word before this event.  Gleaning, as described in the Let’s Glean Brochure on the USDA website is “the act of collecting excess fresh foods from farms, gardens, farmers markets, grocers, restaurants, state/county fairs, or any other sources in order to provide it to those in need“. Continue reading

Tasting our way through the Fork Food Lab grand opening.

Hanging out at the Fork Food Lab grand opening was a festive experience. We were not alone in our excitement at checking out this new shared kitchen space. We arrived a little after six pm and the party was in full swing, along with a decent size line waiting to enter but fortunately things were moving quickly.

The perimeter of the parking area in front of Fork Food Labs was lined with tables where Fork Food Lab members were passing out samples of their tasty food creations. There were pockets of people huddled around the tables waiting for their turn to try the samples, as well as other sporadic lines. It was a little hard to know exactly where to go at times but it all worked out. Continue reading

Five Fun Summer Festivals Happening in Maine

Some summer activities unfold organically as a lazy weekend lays before you and you decide a day or two before how you want to get the most from the warm days. Other events take a bit more planning. You need to clear your schedule and, in some cases, get tickets ahead of time so that you don’t miss out on the fun.

Both types of activities have a place on my summer to do list, but for those that require advanced planning now is the time to start marking them down on the calendar. With that in mind, here’s a hit list of a few of the festivals happening in Maine this summer that are worth planning for ahead of time. Continue reading

Cook-Off Congdon's

Incredible Breakfast Cook-Off 2016

Breakfast is one of my three favorite meals, and on the weekends when we can enjoy something a little more elaborate, it moves up a few notches. There is nothing better than a leisurely brunch. The annual Incredible Breakfast Cook-Off brings together various competitors all vying to be crowned winner of “Maine’s Best Breakfast”. The event is the start of Maine Restaurant Week. During the cook-off, guests taste samples of all the delicious breakfast fare and then vote for their favorites. The event, which was held this past Friday morning from 7:00 – 9:00 am, was a great segue into the weekend. Continue reading