Downeast Maine

We took our New England summer camping tour/blitz to Downeast Maine to celebrate Daddy’s birthday. We started this birthday tradition for him last year at a sweet campground/organic farm called Recompence Shore Campground near Freeport, Maine. He was so delighted with cake around the campfire that we vowed to continue the tradition. This year, we drove another few hours further “up the coast” (to us non-Mainers) or “Downeast” (to those versed in Maine geographic terminology) to Camden Hills State Park in Linconville, Maine.

Mt. Megunticook View

On Saturday morning we set out early for a hike up Mt. Megunticook with ocean views in mind. The hike started out a little rough, with some members of our expedition deciding (s)he was “not hiking today.” After an arduous 1/8 mile up the trail we stopped for an energy break (so necessary considering it had been at least 30 minutes since breakfast. Ahem.) Our special GORP blend consisting of peanuts, raisins, and Reese’s Pieces and several minutes of resting seemed to do the trick, after which (s)he found the energy to continue hiking at a sprint. How quickly things change. We fortified the kids against further crashes in blood sugar by jamming their little pockets full of GORP, which gave them great pleasure. Until it didn’t, and then we were commanded to remove it because it was “too heavy.” Ahem again.

Camden Harbor (near), Rockport Harbor (far)

At some point the kids found hiking sticks that soon became much more. Our sweet boy dumpling is dabbling in the idea of guns, so he was playing with that idea. Our sweet girl dumpling knows we do not support such play, and got creative with her stick, calling it a “transformer” which was no less useful than a Leatherman or MacGyver. Her stick was anything from a helicopter to a stool (ow). Sweet boy dumpling boy got in on the game and announced his transformer stick was a sun gun that blasted exploding gases to the sun to keep it hot. They carried these sticks for the rest of the weekend and found a myriad array of uses for them, most garnering parental approval (not that they were asking for it). I love that we can go camping and the only thing needed to keep the kids occupied is a pile of books for the car and a few sticks. Isn’t that what childhood is all about?

the family that hikes together....sits on mountaintops together!

The post-hike birthday party involved white cake (a given – yawn), homemade cards from the dumplings, homemade pajamas from me, a snazzy new down vest, and an ultralight sleeping bag. He always spoils me, so what the hay? The bag was a communal gift from our moms and da(d)(ve), so it wasn’t too overly indulgent! 

Birthday boy

We were a little concerned that shoehorning this weekend trip into our sweet little dumplings’ newly busy fall schedule would be too much. Truth be told, they seemed totally fine getting back into the swing of things at home. Ironically, Daddy and I were whooped and wondered if we were a little overambitious. The answer is yes, totally. But that’s what we do! Once we recover I’m pretty sure we’ll remember the sound of the waves crashing on the rocks, the bright earthy colors of the seaweed, the transformer sticks and the french fries at the lobster shack, and forget all the packing and driving.

Maine Coast, Lincolnville

Big Rock + Warm Sun = Contemplation

A moment's peace.

Girl and her transformer stick.

Boy and sun stick.

Snack at the lobstah shack.

Camden Harbor

moved by color.

moved by gray.

What packing and driving?


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