Renovation Stay-Day-Cation

With a hot pot of chicken stew on the stove and threats of it reaching about 40 degrees tonight, I thought I would take a step back and talk about a little trip Andy and I took.

Sometimes when you’re doing renovations you just need to get away. On a Sunday a few weeks ago we were both tired. There was work to do, and work we did. I could barely stay awake, Andy was also worn out and the dogs were restless. At about 3:00 Andy sat down and looked at me and said, “We should go to the beach”. Let me explain something to you. Andy does not go to the beach. He’s not a beach guy. When Andy says, “We should go to the beach” you jump on it. You also know he needs a break.

Within about five minutes I was ready and in the car with the dogs. We don’t really “go places” by ourselves. We often are visiting family, or meeting up with people. So to go away, even for the day, with just the two of us is wonderful. We weren’t sure where we were going so we chose a general area and just drove. There are so many reasons I love living in Maine, and the ability to go in any direction and find beauty is one of them. Whether it’s the mountains, the ocean, camp in the woods, or the city, I have access to so many wonderful places at my fingertips. On this particular day we were ocean bound.

Our original plan was to head to Popham beach on the coast, but a barn across from an inlet caught our eye, so we instead took a side country road to try and find the barn up close.

While we never found the barn, we wound down back roads and ooh’d and ahh’d at the gorgeous houses and scenery we drove by.

Before we knew it we had found our way back to route one and were heading towards Boothbay. We then saw a sign for Fort Edgecomb so we decided to take a stop in and see what it was about.

There were some absolutely amazing features. For a structure built specifically for utilitarian purposes I found the interior beautiful. There’s something about touching a beautiful hand built door just knowing every piece of metal was hand forged, the timber framing was installed piece by piece, and what it must have been like inside this fort back in the day. I appreciate quality, something that is hard to find now a days, and this was no exception.

Andy was particularly smitten impressed by the solid thick wood door. He said it was really a feat, and he imagined what it must have taken to build something like it and get it into place.

After we left the puppies were tired, and I couldn’t help but take this photo of them snuggling. They are often caught snuggling (this is actually some of the less snuggly snuggling they do) and I can’t help but take photos of them.

Before we knew it, we ended up in East Boothbay winding down little back roads to a beautiful rocky beach. We had gone through Boothbay, which I had surprisingly never been too, but it wasn’t until we hit East Boothbay that we both felt like this was the spot and very much “us”.  At the little rocky beach we found the sign said “please respect our property” but since it wasn’t posted and others were around we simply took the sign as, “don’t be a jerk and ruin it for everyone else”.

I stayed dry while Andy and the dogs went swimming. If you’ve never sat on a rocky beach and heard the ocean gently lap and break against the rocks I highly suggest it. A sand beach is wonderful but there’s nothing like a beautiful rocky beach. Call it the New Englander in me, but I just love them.

We even managed to get a very rare family photo. I normally stay behind the camera, but I knew this was one family photo I really wanted. The dogs were more interested in the water (Winnie is looking over her shoulder) and Rosie…well, we never know what Rosie is doing.

After we finished up at the beach and *ahem* cleaned up after Winnie, who gets so excited when she swims she has to go, we headed back on down the road in search of a cold beer and fried clams.

We came across a little restaurant called the Lobstermans Wharf Restaurant that not many people were at, and decided to give it a go. While we were feeding the dogs their dinner in the parking lot an employee came out and informed us that as long as the dogs were on leash they were welcome inside. Excuse me? Yes please.

Let me just tell you. On the back side of this restaurant is an outdoor space. When we walked through there were already two other labs there. My dogs were in heaven. I was in heaven. This was truly a perfect day.

This place had some of the coldest beer, and best fried clams I have literally ever consumed in my life. Andy can attest that I rarely drink more than 1/2 (at best) of a beer when I order it. I love a good cold beer, but I rarely drink so for me it’s more about taste than anything. Not only did I finish this beer, I just about finished my entire meal. Andy had the haddock and he said it was really good too. The food is priced like good Maine seafood, but it’s worth it (and even more so for us because we’ve never been able to bring our dogs into a restaurant, and that was huge for me). By the time we left the entire outside deck was filled (with Rosie attempting to greet everyone who walked in with a big smile, butt wiggle and tail wag) and the inside of the restaurant was almost at capacity.

This place had such a great feel to it. If any of you go to Boothbay, I honest to goodness suggest taking a drive to East Boothbay, especially if you have a dog. I’m not sure if they are allowed in the actual restaurant but come on – you’re in Maine, eat outside on the water.  We found the Lobstermans Wharf Restaurant on a whim, and we will definitely be going back when we need another break and take another drive.

After this we took an easy ride home, enjoyed the cooler air rolling in, and the stress was gone.

Sometimes, even in the midst of everything, you just need to take a minute away with just your own little family.

Oh Maine, I love you.




9 thoughts on “Renovation Stay-Day-Cation

  1. Thank you very much, for making me – after a long day filled with stupid disappointments – miss the ocean wicked much.

    Also, all these ocean photos are making me smile and i don’t know why. So not have you only made me really miss something I love (there seems to be a bit of that in my life at the moment), you have also made me wicked smile and happy.

    I need a Maine ocean getaway very, very soon!

    These are also gorgeous photos!!! I would love to go shooting with you when I come to Maine.

    1. Aww I’m glad it made you nostalgic but smile and happy too. That’s what I try to achieve with posts like this. I want people to feel the happiness I felt at the time. I think you should come soon. We can get Maine Italians and lay on the beach together and smell the salt air. Then we can take photos together. Maybe we can take a day-cation up the coast. Love you and miss you.

      For everyone else – this is my sister. Go read her blog, it’s the entirely opposite version of what my blog is.


  2. Thanks for sharing this little vacation with us! It made me feel happy and relaxed.
    Maine is really a beautiful place and your photos are beautiful aswell. (Maine is now in my places-I-would like -to-visit-someday list)
    I find your dogs very cute (though they are big dogs) and they always made me smile because they seem to be genuinely interested in construction and DIY … the photo where your husband knocks the door and the dog is looking to him attentively is so amusing. Made my day! 😀 😀

    But the last dog photo is the best! He (she?) looks clever and well behaved. Nice dog.

    1. Maine is definitely a beautiful place to visit. I feel like most people abroad automatically go to the big cities, but they don’t realize the calm beauty that is in New England! Our dogs (both girls) are most definitely a good medium/large sized breed. They are 60lbs each, and truly believe they are lap dogs. They are so cute. Rosie (the darker one) is often found with us right in the midst of construction. Winnie doesn’t like the banging, but she tolerates it. She’s the one in the photo with Andy. I laughed when I saw how attentive she looked too! I joke about them being trouble makers but in all honesty, they are pretty great dogs.

      P.S. You should definitely try fried clams. They are hit or miss though, if they are rubbery at all or not super fresh then they aren’t very awesome. This place had them so fresh that they pretty much melted in your mouth!


  3. This sounds like my idea of a perfect day! I’m in NH but I really don’t go to Maine that often. Last trip there was July 2011 to Bar Harbor but Boothbay is actually next on our list as it comes highly highly recommended by a friend who’s been gong there for years. Thanks for the nice post, New England really is amazing!

  4. Oh and a final question, Heather: what’s a “Maine Italian” sub? I know I knew at one point how it differed from other Italians , but i’ve since forgotten!

    1. Haha for all of those interested in making one:
      Italian Bread, olive oil, salt and pepper, layered with sliced deli ham, american cheese (white! Our take – provolone vs American), tomatoes, onion, green pepper, sliced kalamata olives (some people may put black on, but it’s not the original way) & dill pickles.

      Tips on ordering: Don’t order a “Ham Italian”; unless otherwise specified ham is understood. Don’t order an Italian Sub. Italians aren’t subs, even if they are served on sub type rolls. Just order an “Italian”. If necessary, you can say “Italian Sandwich” but it’s not really that necessary. 🙂

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