Every Summer our family tries to plan at least one major vacation. Usually these trips are broken up into family / couple time – where we travel with the kids somewhere, and drop them off on the tail or beginning end at the Grandparents for ‘camp’ while my husband and I travel on together. This year, we chose Maine.
It felt kind of random when we were choosing the location. Maine was somewhere we always wanted to visit, but had heard that the best time to go is in the Autumn, when it literally explodes with color. Not having free time in the Fall (dang kids school education getting in the way – ha!), we decided to go this Summer. If not now, then when? Right?!!
There was so much I was unprepared for. I was unprepared for how much I would absolutely fall in love with Maine. I was unprepared for the fact that I would want to look at real estate while I was there, or want to learn how to make custom sails, or want to run away on a sailboat and never come back. I was also unprepared for the 50 degree water temp. LOL!!!
But something in me shifted while I was there, and I cannot quite explain it. But while I am figuring that part out, here is an absolute SLEW of photos that were taken along the way…
Sewing Rabbit in Maine
PART 1 – Portsmouth, New Hampshire
On the drive up, we stopped in Portsmouth for the night. Love, love, love, love, love, love, love. Such a cute little town, with absolutely breathtaking running trails through the city and surrounding towns. We adored shopping in this walking town, and enjoyed all of the locally brewed ale. And oh my goodness, the Clam Chowder at Jumpin’ Jay’s Fish Cafe??? I am still dreaming about it. Naturally, I found the fabric store in town and bought some fabulous bright and colorful Christmas themed fabric. Eek, I cannot wait to sew those dresses up :).
Did I mention how much I loved Portsmouth? Here are the photos I snapped in this historical city…
PART 2 – York, Maine
We really only spent an hour in York, but we just had to stop and see this lighthouse. And try the blueberry lemonade of course. Did you know Maine is famous for its blueberries? I seriously had no idea, so so good! The Cape Neddick Lighthouse was built in 1879, and is still in use today!
DID YOU SEE THAT?!! Some guy was literally jumping all over the rocks on his bike. In a Superman t-shirt of course. because if you are going to jump around a bunch of rock hills on a bike, you should definitely be wearing a superman t-shirt. He was an interesting character to talk to.
PART 3 – Camden, Maine
This is wear the trip gets truly interesting…Camden. In all honesty, I have mixed feelings about Camden. I did not love Camden as much as I loved Portsmouth, the whole town just kind of felt a bit…rich. Does that make sense? I felt like I couldn’t fully relax in Camden, as everyone was walking around dressed impeccably nice, just off their yachts and sailboats, and the whole town kind of had this ‘foo-foo’ vibe. Which isn’t necessarily my style. I love to get dressed up and go out to a nice dinner as much as the next person, but I am way more relaxed when it comes to living my life. Camden wasn’t ‘me’.
But what we did in Camden, or shall I say when we left Camden, that was the best thing in the whole wide world. I seriously don’t know if any vacation can top this one.
We took a 5 day windjammer cruise. Where you get to sail on a schooner for 5 days – with no internet reception, no cities, no nothing. It’s just you, the few other couples with you, the crew, the sun, stars, wind, and the sails.
Cheaper than any cruise or other vacation we have ever taken, yet more rewarding in ways that you cannot measure. There were a couple times I thought I was going stir crazy, because there isn’t much room to move. But this trip gave me time to think, and breath, and just BE. My mind was curious again, because it had time to be curious. I wanted to learn, explore, do new things and see new places. I felt like a part of me opened up on that cruise, that had long since been buried. The artistic bohemian in me broke free. That same quiet person that I used to know in high school that could paint for hours on end without interruption. The person that has long since been forgotten in the busyness of every day life with kids and work. The inner-most me was released somewhere off the coast of Maine, and I am still struggling with how to cope now that I have returned to normal life.
The windjammer cruise isn’t for everyone, I get that. Some people truly do go stir-crazy on these things. But if you have a quiet gypsy soul hiding within you, then I highly recommend this trip.
PART 4 – Kennebunkport, Maine
I wish I had more pictures to show you of Kennebunkport. By this portion of the trip, I was so in love I was too busy looking at real estate to take photos. Because we are obviously totally rich like that, and can easily afford Summer homes in Maine – HA!
At one point, I found myself 2 feet away from the former first lady Mrs. Barbara Bush. Unfortunately I didn’t realize it was her until I had asked the secret service agent to kindly move from the ramp so that I could get into the needlepoint shop. OOPS. But talk about a fun little town, perfect for families and dogs. So many bike paths, we spent our time running through the forest trails and on the beach path. Eating at every restaurant in town, and kayaking any which way we could paddle. It was amazing, and I cannot wait to go back.
PART 5 – New York
And of course, home sweet home. No Summer vacation travel would be complete without my visit home. This time we had to keep it short and sweet, as we had a puppy we needed to get home to! So with just a few days on the back end, I spent soaking every minute up with the kids and my parents. Nothing quite says Summer like a good ole water hose in the backyard.
We did take a day trip up to Mystic, Connecticut to visit the Seaport, and I also managed to visit Mood Fabrics while in NYC.
All in all, and EPIC trip for the ages filled with memories to last a lifetime. I love that we didn’t have to go far, or spend a lot of money, or fly across an ocean of water to do it too. With just 3 weeks left of Summer vacation, we will be soaking up every fun-filled family minute until the bell rings. Are your kids back in school yet?
Sorry for the vacation photo overload, but I just love sharing amazing new places to visit. and who’da thunk. MAINE?!! You absolutely HAVE TO go. As for the personal ‘shift’ that happened on this vacation? I don’t know what is going to happen there, I just know that something is going to come from this. Whether that is just a bit of a slowing down, or moving in a bit different of a direction, or maybe its more on a personal level, I honestly don’t know yet. I just know I cannot get this dang trip out of my head, and I seriously need to stop stalking the Windjammer Facebook page. Its getting weird. Lol