R is for Recycled Lobster Rope Mats | No better way to say “welcome to my home”.

A recycled lobster rope doormat has been on my wish list for years. I love the ingenuity of their evolution. When federal regulations banned the use of float rope by Maine lobstermen, due to issues with whale entanglement, they had to switch over to sink rope and retire the float rope. While the rope could have ended up in a landfill, instead it became the manufacturing material for a new line of products.

While it’s still possible to find recycled versions of the float rope doormat, there are also other companies that now manufacture them using new rope opening up more tailored designs and colors. They are wonderful, but I prefer the environmentally friendly nature of recycling the used float rope. Continue reading

P is for Pike’s Original Maine Garden Hod | Practical and beautiful.

When we bought our home it came with three raised garden beds which of course meant I immediately envisioned summers with endless supplies of fresh herbs, vegetables and wild flowers without truly understanding the time and energy needed to achieve these results. Somehow, even with my lack of gardening skills, we did manage a couple of seasons with a good supply of herbs and wild flowers. We never managed the vegetables beyond a few tomatoes and one or two anemic bean poles.

Even with our limited success, as each new spring approaches I’m ready to dive in again but I’ve accepted that we probably won’t be feeding ourselves anytime soon. So one of my bucket list items for the year was to join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) and we’re about to check this one off our list. We bought a half-share of the organic vegetable CSA from Frith Farm in Scarborough. Continue reading

O is for October Fields | Finding my zen with clean burning soy candles.

One of my favorite quotes is from Gretchen Rubin, “The days are long, but the years are short.”  I think it’s just a great way to sum up our intensely busy lives and the importance in finding joy in the moments. Some weeks can seem to last forever, but then suddenly you’re into a new season. While I do try to appreciate all the moments, even the ones that are crazy busy, any time I can take a moment to breathe and slow things down is a good one.

One Friday night activity that allows me to slow the pace is staying up late, snuggled under a blanket, binge watching a favorite show on Netflix. To add to this peaceful vibe, I love to turn off all the lights and light one or two candles to add to the atmosphere. Candles really help set a mood and, at least for me, help to quiet down the chaos. We use them a lot at my house. Continue reading

L is for LooHoo | Add some fun to your laundry routine with Wool Dryer Balls.

I long ago gave up using dryer sheets. There seemed to be too many environmental reasons as to why they’re not a good choice. Plus, I really never liked the smell. They were too overly fragrant for my taste.

I didn’t substitute anything for them. I dried my clothes without them. This worked fine most of the time, but occasionally static would cause some things to stick together when I would take out my clothes. Nothing big, just a minor nuisance.

I started seeing wool dryer balls popping up about five years ago, but as I wasn’t feeling that negatively impacted by my dryer sheet free laundry routine, I didn’t do follow up until recently when I learned that there was a manufacturer right here in Maine – LooHoo Wool Dryer Balls. Who doesn’t want to support a local company named after Cindy Lou Who of Dr. Seuss fame? Continue reading

A is for Atayne | Even a couch potato needs good performance gear.

Okay, so maybe it’s not fair to call myself a couch potato. As my many hiking posts show, I enjoy being active and love to be outside exploring Maine, but I’m not comfortable with the word athlete. I once tried with little success to play at that level. I ran track for one year in High School. My strongest memory from that season is consistently coming in last place for my event.

The reality is that I could never be a true athlete. I don’t have the physical aptitude and in all honesty no desire to commit to that level of training. However, I do understand the importance of living an active life and, when I’m not trapped at my keyboard, I am always looking for ways to move my body. Continue reading