Summer Vacation: Week 2 – MAINE

From Hearts Everywhere
Week 2 was easier since we were based in one place (Bar Harbor cottage). I highly recommend staying in a rental rather than a hotel when traveling with children. A separate bedroom for parents and children and a kitchen go a long way towards maintaining sanity and recreating any semblance of the much-needed routine they crave.

Reading back on my notes in retrospect, I think I was all parts brave, a good sport, and partially psychotic in attempting a “vacation” such as this. I was lucky since after two weeks with me, the 8-year-old got to go on another vacation with his father, and I had only the baby with us for the last two weeks.

These past two weeks in New York was just us three, hanging out at home and relaxing, detoxing, and loving. These two weeks were exactly the vacation I needed to end the summer we welcomed Mackenzie into our life.

I realize how very lucky I am to have this time to completely enjoy life – and a loving partner that holds my hand through the sweet ride.


Here’s another over-detailed account of what week two of our summer trip looked like; pictures at the end.


Saturday, August 21, 2010

  • Drove from Portland to Bar Harbor, Maine.
  • Breakfast at Denny’s – Jake’s fave.
  • Went to BabiesRUs first to get a travel bed for our cottage (we were using the hotel’s cribs up until now and didn’t bring our own because we had no more room in our car).
  • Went to see Portland Head Light where Jake got to climb rocks and collect quartz, see crabs and snails and Andrew got to sustain an injury during quartz acquisition.
  • Snacked in the car all day rather than eating any real meal other than Denny’s. Wendy’s frostys for dinner. Bad mother guilt.
  • Arrived at cottage where we were pleasantly surprised – but the beds seem very hard.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

  • Breakfast at home made with local groceries.
  • Went to Acadia Visitor Center, hiked at Sandy Beach (where Jake and Andrew climbed all the way up the rocks and I watched nervously) and hiked to Otter Point (where incidentally there are no otters).
  • Dinner at Geddy’s in Bar Harbor.

Monday, August 23, 2010

  • Attempted to do cereal-crusted French toast for breakfast – not a huge success. Mostly blamed the stove and the frying pan.
  • Hiked around Witch Pond – same 3.3 mile-hike that the Obama family did a few weeks ago.. Jake made a friend: Serge, the grasshopper.
  • Dinner at the Thirsty Whale in Bar Harbor
  • Movie night at home (Where the Wild Things Are). The movie turned out to be too dark for the tv we had there – so we cut it short.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

  • Went to Echo Lake Beach for the day – my first lake beach. No waves crashing sounds in the background so it was hard to feel 100% beach like, but it was the closest I had gotten all summer.
  • This was one of my favorite days of vacation. We finally got to slow down. Jake was able to go into the water by himself without me having the paranoia that the waves would steal him. Andrew made a painting – and I did nothing for a few minutes. It was fabulous, but I felt guilty because Jake kept asking me to go into the water, but I never got hot enough. (But Andrew spent a lot of time in the water with him – he just wanted to see me be cold or splash me.)
  • Went to Thurston’s Lobster Pound in Bernard, Maine, just past Bass Harbor for dinner. Best lobster we’ve had on this trip. We had soft shelled lobster, since it was soft shell lobster season (and all they had left). It was easier to crack than the hard shell, but it was still a hard shell. Whatever they call it – I call it delicious.
  • Jake wanted none of eating the lobsters so I ended up coming home and cooking him delicious chicken. Yes, eventually he’ll see the irony.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

  • It rained so hard we stayed home all day and watched Alladin and ate snacks, including nachos with guacamole and dark chocolate peanut m&m’s.
  • Andrew and I went to the overpriced Sawyer’s Market in Southwest Harbor to get fish and cook at home. We made a delicious feast and I somehow concocted a sautéed, granola-crumb encrusted haddock using whatever snack materials of food we had. We also had garlic mashed potatoes, corn and salad with thousand island dressing, which I never knew I liked.
  • We attempted to watch the original Batman movie (the one with Michael Keaton) and both Jake and I thought it was boring and didn’t make it until the end.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

  • Drove to Cadillac Mountain where we did part of the South Ridge Trail hike from there.
  • Hike turned out to be 7-mile up treacherous rocks rather than the suspected .3 mile easy hike around the summit. Had Mackenzie strapped to me via Ergo Baby Carrier the entire time. We ended up doing about a mile of it.
  • Went to Pirate’s Cove mini golf – for 36-holes of fun. Jake even won us a free game by getting a hole-in-one. Had Gifford’s ice cream in between first 18 holes and next.
  • Attempted to eat at the Fiddler’s Green, but it turned out to be like the Nobu of the region. It was right about 8pm when the over-friendly hostess let me know that she’s got about 15 tables coming in (I think that meant reservations) and well, she had this rehearsal dinner party that took up the whole balcony – and she just could not do it. She suggested 3 other places “in town” (translation: 2 blocks away and for a span of two blocks). The first one we never found despite the very obvious directions of “between the first bank and the second bank.” The second one was a restaurant at an Inn that appeared over priced and empty. The third was a café/deli/ice cream place across the street. We decided that was our best, most effective choice that late at night with two kids on tow.
  • Dinner at Quietside Café in Southwest Harbor. Nice waitress from Macedonia, where she told us, is just south of Greece, since most Americans don’t know geography.

Friday, August 27, 2010

  • Went to Bass Harbor Head Light (http://lighthouse.cc/bassharbor/) where I really shouldn’t have been hiking on the rocks with a 2-month-old in the baby carrier. Drove to Boston, where we rested for the night and visited with Andrew’s cousins.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Flowers in front of our cottage.

More flowers.

From Hearts Everywhere

Portland Head Light. When we were there two years ago, the sky was just as white.

Portland Head Light. Closer up.

Portland Head Light – a little further away.

Before the boys climbed the higher rocks – a family shot at Sandy Beach, Acadia National Park.

A man got off his bike in the middle of a misty ride and asked us if we wanted a photo with all 4 of us before we started the Witch Hole Pond hike. We did. We did half of the 3-mile hike in the rain. It was kind of boring.

The Obama family walked this very path (Witch Hole Pond @ Acadia National Park) a few weeks before us.

On the Witch Pond Road hike, Jake and his grasshopper friend, Serge.

Someone made a stick of blueberries. Witch Hole Pond – Acadia State Park.

A lotus grows amidst a mossy lake. Acadia National Park.

Just a nearby view on top of Cadillac Mountain.

Sitting pretty on top of Cadillac Mountain.

Lots of colors on top of Cadillac Mountain.

Bass Harbor Head Light

The photogenic, quintessential shot of Bass Harbor Head Light.

In front of Bass Harbor Head Light. I should not have climbed out there holding the baby.

On the road to Boston.

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