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Archive for March, 2015

CP#1’s Girl Scout troop is working towards their commerce badge. To make it fun, the troop leaders organized a trip to Wilbur’s Chocolates in Freeport, where the girls would spend the afternoon learning about chocolate and how it’s made. MP, who is never one to turn down an opportunity for chocolate samples, decided to tag along.

Wilbur’s, which is located in an orange farmhouse on Route 1 called “The Pumpkin House,” has been in business since 1983. According to our tour guide, Tom and Catherine Wilbur started out with a retail store. Soon after, Tom began experimenting with chocolate making. The pair eventually made the decision to make and sell their own confections. The first chocolate Tom Wilbur developed is the iconic Wilbur’s moose, which is still sold at their shops today.

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Our patient tour guide for the afternoon.

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Our family was looking forward to visiting friends in Providence for our first children’s film festival over February break, but the weather didn’t cooperate. While Maine escaped a blizzard, Rhode Island was hit with a big snowstorm and we cancelled the trip. MP was so disappointed. She figured the kids would have to wait until next year for the experience.

Then MP received a note from Portland-based mom, Lauri Boxer-Macomber, detailing the city’s upcoming children’s film festival. The event, now in its 4th year, benefits the East End Community School, a K-5 public school in Portland. According to Lauri, one the festival’s main goals is to create lasting connections within the community through films.

portland_childrens_film_festival_logo (2015)

The entirely volunteer-run festival, which begins Wednesday, March 25th and runs through Sunday, March 29th, features everything from animated short films for little ones to documentaries for teens. Each film focuses on a different part of the world in an effort to create a global awareness for young audiences. The films will be shown at several venues around Portland, including Space Gallery, The Portland Museum of Art, and The Portland Public Library, to name a few.

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“The more ingredients in a packaged food, the more highly processed it probably is.” —Michael Pollan

In January, MP was browsing the new books at our library and came across a cookbook called 100 Days of Real Food by Lisa Leake. The book caught MP’s interest for a few reasons. Like MP, Lisa is a blogger and mother of two, who enjoys cooking and baking. Lisa began her blog after watching a television interview with In Defense of Food author Michael Pollan. Pollan’s common sense thoughts on highly processed foods inspired Lisa to change her family’s eating habits for the better.

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Lisa Leake and her family. Photo courtesy of http://www.jsonline.com.

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CP#1 and #2 are growing up fast. We decided this year they would be ready to try cross-country skiing. Plus if there were ever a winter to embrace the outdoors, this one is it. DP grew up skiing at Carter’s in Oxford, but we decided to try some place closer to home for our first outing. On a bright, 20º Saturday afternoon, we bundled up and traveled to Pineland Farms in New Gloucester. The ski center features expansive trails, ranging in difficulty from beginner to advanced.

We rented skis, boots and poles at the farm, and the friendly staff made us feel right at home. “You’ll have a blast!” said the young woman behind the counter once we were fully outfitted.

DP, who is the designated map expert at our house, decided on a nearly 3 mile trail to get us started. Once we all put on our skis, we traversed up our first hill. CP#2 lead the pack, followed by his Dad, CP#1 and MP, who admittedly is the slowest skier in our crew. The slippery hill was a tough way to start, but once we got past it, the remainder of the trail was fairly flat.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

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