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For our family, one of the highlights of the season is shopping local fairs and festivals. We get to chat with vendors, learn about the beautiful things they make and find wonderful presents to give to loved ones. Following are some of the sweetest small gifts we discovered while shopping this month. Best of all, they’re just the right size for a stocking:

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MP has been a fan of the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens (CMBG) in Boothbay for as long as she can remember. With over 295 acres of woodland and shorefront property, the lush grounds are made for people who adore plants, flowers and the Maine outdoors. CMBG is also home to a spectacular Children’s Garden, complete with fairytale cottages, a treehouse with a rope bridge, and engaging pathways to explore. When CMBG began its holiday light show in 2015, MP put the event on her wish list of things to do. There is nothing like seeing 500,000 colorful lights to help put a family in the holiday spirit!electric Continue Reading »

MP enjoys cooking homemade meals, but her desire to do so ebbs and flows depending on the family’s schedule. Our dinners generally become simple in the summer and when school starts, we plan streamlined, after sports practice meals like breakfast for dinner, pasta dishes with grilled sausage, homemade pizzas and fajitas.  But when the temperature drops, no matter what’s going on in our lives, MP can think of nothing else but her favorite comfort food dishes. This classic macaroni and cheese is one of the recipes she craves. With a solid sharp cheddar cheese (we like Cabot Seriously Sharp), Panko breadcrumbs and a dusting of smoked paprika, this dish is easily elevated from good to great.

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MP adores fall in Maine — the crisp mornings, the golden sunlight and the vibrant leaves make the season feel like a celebration. Winter is right around the corner, and for this reason, she feels compelled to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Our family had never traveled to the Rangeley area before, so we decided to make the most of an autumn weekend in this stunning part of the state.

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MP is the resident family photographer. It’s a job she thoroughly enjoys, but every once in awhile, she wouldn’t mind being included in a picture or two. For this reason, she reached out to talented family photographer, Nina Cutter. MP discovered Nina’s photos on Instagram and was instantly drawn to her creative use of color and light. Her style is playful and honest, as evidenced by the sweet photos she took of our family.

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Treworgy Family Orchard is located in Levant, just 10 miles outside of Bangor, where owner Gary Treworgy and his big creative family design an incredible corn maze on the grounds of their farm. Since 2001, visitors have enjoyed their impressive mazes — which have ranged from a variety of animals to a Celtic labyrinth and even a knight fighting a dragon! This year’s design is Paul Bunyan, Legendary Lumberjack, and our crew decided it was high time we visit the farm to experience the maze for ourselves.

 

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Finally! We are back from a busy summer break that included finalizing a big project (details in a future post), entertaining houseguests, road trips, and all variety of camps for the kids. While our family adores summer in Maine, we consider September, with its golden sunshine and mild temperatures, one of the best months of the year.

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