Summer isn't summer without 'Heavenly Blue' morning glories on our front porch.
"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes."
Hello dear friends,
I hope you are all enjoying these last, fleeting moments of summer. I love the summer here in Maine because it is not about hot weather, but about changes in the weather. One minute sunny and blue skies, the next moment foggy and gray, then thunder and lightning, rain, and mists. I love, love, love the changes in the light, and the scents and sounds.
Inside the popcorn popper...so misty outside that I can't see the ocean
Our living room has a peaked roof so the patter or pounding of rain is magnified. Oh, and the red squirrels, who run up and down a tall fir that we call the "elevator tree," drops green cones onto the roof throughout the day. Sometimes it sounds like we are living in a popcorn popper.
Sou'wester and rain boots for our walks (rain or shine)
I don't know if I ever mentioned that our tiny cottage, which in Maine is referred to as a "camp," was once the bunkhouse for the Miles Fresh Air Camp. In the 1920s, children were given the opportunity to have a camp experience/vacation beside the sea. I love the history of this old place and recently learned that Babe Ruth stopped by to visit with the kids. Imagine, the great Babe Ruth may have walked these floors.
I am so happy to be here. Every day holds new adventures, meetings with old and new friends and family from far away. We share meals on the porch, crackling fires, and walks under the stars. Last week we could see the star showers (Perseid Meteor Showers), and we reveled in the beauty of the full
moon over the sea.
We walk a couple of miles every night. Here is our goal, our touchstone; we stop where we have a view of Hay Island on the left and my favorite little Crow Island on the right. Look at that moon!
For many of us, it is a big deal to visit the post office everyday and today WAS a big deal. Waiting in our post box was a gift all beautifully packaged and wrapped from my girlfriend Susan (My Mother's Apron Strings). Inside was a bag of fabulous cookies, a gorgeous California poppy (my favorite flower) necklace made by Susan, who is a well known paper artist, designer, author, chef, gardener, and great mother and grandmother. Tucked inside was also a jar of her own freshly made cherry cranberry jam. How did I get so lucky? Thank you, Susan, for being so giving!
Susan's box of goodies
I received an e-mail from a lovely young mother who wanted me to stop by her garden and see the sunflower house they planted for her daughter. It is a small one in great shape, and it has the requisite morning glory roof. Every summer I receive lots of letters and photos of sunflower houses planted throughout our country and abroad. It is hard for me to believe that my first book Sunflower Houses will be celebrating its 20th anniversary in just a couple of months, and it is still in print.
A bit of canvas cloth for the flooring, a chair, a table, and lots of imagination.
And now my friends, will you forgive me for posting a random group of photos that I think you may enjoy seeing? These are all bits and pieces of why I so love New England, but especially Maine.
This new barn is down the road from us at Bittersweet Landing. I had to include this "topping out" tradition found on homes and barns in Maine (and in many European countries). See the skeleton of a pine tree atop the barn? This is placed on the peak of the building when the last beam is set into place. It is supposed to bring good luck to the owner of the home or barn, but I have heard different versions of this story, too.
Found these great vintage signs (from Cherry Gallery) to hang in the kitchen at our Comfort Found Literary Lodging.
It takes a village? In this case, a village for the birds.
A great visit with a garter snake.
The potager at Arrows Restaurant in Ogunquit. I want this garden.
The sweet, front garden at Arrows. Look at that edible windowbox! Well, the windowbox isn't edible, but the contents sure are.
Pie in the Sky Bakery...simply yummy. You'll find it in Cape Neddick, Maine. The aromas will draw you in if the gardens, windowbox, and sign haven't already grabbed you.
The Walpole Barn on the road from our house to Damariscotta. That is Jeff at the counter. You can buy fresh local oysters, wine, local art and handcrafts (my friend Sara Hotchkiss has the big star rug on the wall), gifts, candles, cards, candy, gourmet items....and more. Love this place.
Our Island Grocery has a great sitting deck and flower baskets and pots that will make you drool.
Our farmers' market is surrounded by meadows, gardens, apple trees, and, in the distance, you can see the Great Salt Bay.
And the offerings at our fabulous farmers' market at the Salt Bay Farm in Damariscotta will make you drool, too. Fridays at the market are some of my favorite times.
Although I am managing to work every day, I am also enjoying LOTS of company, lots of cooking, lots of sitting on our porch and enjoying friends, the sea, the birds, and the gentle passage of time. I hope that you are finding your own special peace.
Thanks for your letters and e-mails. You help define my life, and I love you being a part of it, just as I love dropping in to visit with you on your blog postings. If you have the chance, please visit my newest Lowe's blog posting. I value your comments and thoughts both here and at the Lowe's site.
Love from the Fresh Air Camp,
P.S. And the Grimy Handed Winner is...
Carol Samsel from Wright City, Missouri, of SilverSpringacres.blogspot.com
Congratulations! We'll mail your book out this week. Thanks for joining in.