a tidbit from the week
held close to my heart
A family of seven homesteading and living simply in the mountains of northeastern PA.
Our last two days in Maine felt a little bit different from the rest…they were more of a got no where to go so let’s just go exploring kinda feel to them. The majority of our days had general agendas attached, but not these. The other plus, was that after feeling sick for so long I was finally getting better and feeling good.
We drove around the corner from the camp ground to the edge of the bridge over to Sears Island. You cannot drive a vehicle over to the island, but instead you can walk over or ride your bike. We did a combination of both…us walking, kids riding. Once you get over there, there are beautiful shores and hiking trails. My kids enjoyed watching all of the teeny snails and exploring all of the ocean treasures they could find.
And for five seconds I would like to comment on the abundance of “wild” apple trees that both the states of Vermont and Maine seem to house. Literally you cans pot them everywhere just begging for you to pick their beautiful ripe fruit. I bet someone could easily collect enough apples from the wild to press into a gazillion gallons of apple cider each year! We gathered a few apples to much on while we were on Sears Island.
The kids rode their bikes up and up the island, taking a lot of breaks along the way. We didn’t know it was going to be such a steep incline. Since it was taking us kinda a long time to get to the end of this paved road, where the jetty is, we decided to ditch the bikes by the side of the path, and took the Green Trail to where it luckily pops out at the ocean.
Again we wandered through thick forest and popped out at the waters edge. As you may have noticed, the mushrooms have caught my eye this year. They are so beautiful. On our way out from this adventure we met a Maine man had a big basket, who was going to forage for wild mushrooms. He told us that there are 12 mushrooms in the “always safe to eat” zone. I couldn’t tell you what they looked like though, but I wish I knew. I would love to know a couple that I would know 100% were okay to pick and eat. Just another one of those things that I will get to one day sooner or later.
Sears Island was definitely one of my favorite places that we explored on our trip. I thought about how amazing it would be to have the coast of Maine as our classroom. So much to see and touch and experience. Those who have this as a resource right out their back door are so lucky.
The seaweed had air bubbles trapped inside the tips of the seaweed. It made it very bouncy to walk on and made questions come up as to why the seaweed might be like that. We enjoyed spotting star fish, crabs, sea glass, shells, and other Maine pieces of human fascination.
Once we sat for a few moments we decided to head back up the green trail. We spotted all of the landmarks that we got to see on our walk there and we scrambled to get back to our bikes before the sun started to set.
On our way back to the campground we stopped at a farm stand right across the street to get some corn on the cob. Something that we experienced during our time away, without a roof over our heads, was the ease of finding a natural rhythm. We rose early, got teeth brushed and dressed right away, had very full days, everyone was feed three good meals on time, Jason and I for the most part worked well as a team making all ends meet and everyone went to bed early, relatively soon after the sun set. It left me wondering about why it often seems so difficult to make such simple tasks go smoothly at home. Rhythm doesn’t come so easily there, for me at least. I came to the conclusion that we, as an evolved society live with simply way too many distractions in our everyday worlds. How we can escape that…I do not know. What I do know, is just how quickly I was able to find peace in the absence of modern convenience. It all just flowed, and our daily lives seemed so full as a result.
I was sad to leave. I loved every bit of our stay in Maine. It felt like home to me in many ways. Bella on the other hand got home sick and was ready for her own bed two nights before we left. Before we left we took a stroll through the campground gardens, visited the goats one last time, and ventured down to say good bye to the sea.
In the bath house, where there were bathrooms, showers, and washers and dryers…there was a giant chalkboard. every day or so there would be something inspirational written up there. So, on out last night there, I decided to add something…a right now, I AM grateful for… Let me tell you it filled my heart to walk in there the next morning and see that some people were starting to add to it…just like it does when people choose to share bits of gratitude in the right now, I AM posts…it was fun to take it to another level. I might just start up some inspirational graffiti of sorts. Watch out!
On our way out of town we stopped at the Belfast Co op one. last. time. to fill our tummies and stock up on some goodies for the road. We wound up leaving Maine around 12:30pm and drove the whole way home. We were planning on being flexible, but Jason needed to get home to start a job the following morning. I can’t tell you what amazing travelers our little ones are…they blew me away at how long they were fine in the can…without massive entertainment either. They just sat or drew or slept or stared out the windows..amazing. And I, started a special knitting project on the way home, for someone who is turning eleven very soon.
Of course our trip wasn’t perfect, but that’s life. We won’t mention the time I forgot to pack spare clothes for Lake, who uses the potty now, and Lake peed tried to use the urinal, and peed all over himself and his only clothes we had with us. We won’t mention the fact that I probably used close to twenty (exaggerating, a little) rolls of toilet paper to blow my nose. We won’t mention the day it poured and poured and the kids sat in the van for two hours. And I would like to think that the good times outweighed the bickering, whining, and miserable ones, but I’m not sure if that would be true or not. Regardless, looking through our pictures and talking about what our favorite bits and pieces from our trip was with each other…I know we had a great time. Priceless. Bonding. Wonderful experience. And I can’t wait to do it again.