Hello Summer! The gift of living in a state with four seasons.

Today is the first official day of summer. It always feels anticlimactic. Our weather has been teasing summer for awhile now. The warmer days arrived earlier breaking up the cooler and often much damper days of spring. It always happens slowly. An unexpected day or two where temperatures climb higher than expected. A gently reminder to hang on because warmer days are coming.

We have four seasons in Maine. Some people say five. They count spring twice. The warmer days of early spring when everything reawakens. And, the much maligned mud season. I only count spring once. Maybe because it’s actually my least least favorite season. The mosquitoes dominate these milder months and as the snow retreats it leaves everything brown and anemic until finally a burst of green improves the palette.

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Looking for free things to do? Here’s a monthly breakdown of free events in Maine for 2019.

A few years ago, 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 are about to embark on again.

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#AtoZChallenge | U is for Unrelenting and Unending

Winter has some wonderful moments. There is deep beauty to the landscape during the colder snow-covered months. When it arrives covering everything in white, it makes me smile.

I love winter.

There are no mosquitoes or ticks to bother us during our hikes and the overall pace is slower and peaceful. You can snowshoe under the stars during a full moon hike or sit by the fireplace, sipping wine and binge watch the latest Netflix show while snuggled under a blanket. There is so much to enjoy about winter.

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Finding the zen and a splash of green in our spring projects.

Spring in Maine is glorious. The warmer days  and everything coming to life after what is almost always a long, cold winter. It motivates us to get out and do things and while I’d like for all those things to be fun, social outings, in reality spring in Maine is always a working season. I suppose they all have their moments, but getting ready for summer fun doesn’t just happen. It requires lots of diligence and prep.

Winter takes a toll, and spring is the time to take stock and put your to-do list in order. I’m always looking for safe, environmentally friendly ways to do my spring projects and thought I’d share what has worked for me so far and in what areas I’m still looking to do better.

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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.

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