Tent Camping with a Baby!!

This past summer we took our son camping in a tent when he was just 9 months old. He started walking on July 4th soooo he was walking during these camping trips which we definitely didn’t expect. We did a trial run night at my parents’s camp because it was close to home and then we did two nights with him up at White Lake State Park. Both times we boarded Mizpah because we figured we would have enough to worry about! Here are some things that we learned/necessities that helped us have a good experience camping with the tiny human!

Not all tents are created equal

This sounds like common sense, I know, but having a tent that was large enough for our air mattress, a pack n play, and a chair to sit in to feed him his bottle and snuggle a little before each nap and bed time was clutch. We have the North Face Kaiju tent.  It is pricey, but so worth it. When we were looking for a tent a few years back, we wanted it to be tall enough that my husband didn’t have to bend over to change clothes. It also has a vestibule in the front which is great for stowing bins or chairs away….and will also be nice for potty training in the future!

Give your neighbors a heads up!

After we were all set up, we took Cabot over to meet our neighbors and explain that he naps twice a day, goes to bed around 7, and so you MIGHT hear some blood curdling screams around those times hahaha. There can be a great community feel when you are camping if you want. Some people when they camp really keep to themselves on their sites, but it made us feel better to give our neighbors the courtesy of explaining our lovely son’s bedtime behavior!

Some items that helped us through

Summer Infant Portable High Chair– we use this everywhere, not just for camping!

Pack N Play Mosquito Net

Coleman Tent Fan – this was great for naps in the tent in July!

RestCloud Baby Sleep Bag – there are soooo many options out there for warm sleep sacks, many that are sleeveless, which is why we got this one for the cool nights. Probably one of the toughest challenges we had was that it was still warm at 7 PM when we would put him down BUT by 5 AM the temp could have dropped 20 degrees!

Cutter Bug Repellent Wipes – these were great! Very easy application on baby!

Homedic Portable White Noise Machine – this is another item that we got for camping but now just use it for traveling in general! At the moment it is actually living at my inlaws’s house so they can use it when Cabot sleeps over!

Plastic Grass Mat – I couldn’t tell if this was the exact one we got, but this gave us some “floor” space at our campsite that wasn’t dirt which was nice for baby to play and diaper changes.

Keep it Simple!

The last piece of advice I have for camping with baby is keep it simple! When it was just my husband and I, we would plan these great meals for camping. With Cabot, we were feeding him dinner while simultaneously getting our dinner ready so that we didn’t have to cook in the dark so simple dinners like hamburgers and hotdogs OR cooked chicken from home with a salad was the way to go. We can get back to steak tips and veggie kabobs and all our fancy camping foods soon. Quick and easy might be where we aim for in the these early years with Cabot.

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And lastly…cut yourself some slack. Camping with your little ones will present challenges, and camping might be a little less relaxing than it once was. We are so happy to have these memories though, and we love seeing Cabot enjoy the outdoors (he is obsessed with trees/leaves) and do everything for the first time.

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My first summer hike up Mt. Washington

Mid July we found a great little Sunday for my husband, a couple friends and I to hike the big rockpile. We leave our dog Mizpah home for the northern Presidentials. The rocks can be very tough on their pads and joints. I have hiked Mt. Washington in late March before, which was still very wintery. I had never hiked it in the summer.  There are quite a few routes up and down it; people hike it, ski it, drive up it, take ATVs up it (on special days), bike it, take the cog railway, and run it! The weather on Mt. Washington can be some of the worst weather on the planet, and I believe the number of deaths up there is hovering around 150 since 1849. Many deaths have been from hypothermia, and then there are accidents, and of course things like heart attacks. My husband accuses me of putting Washington on a pedestal, but man, it really is something. He is the tallest peak east of the Mississippi River at 6,288 feet (EDIT- this is incorrect and apparently just something I say haha, tallest peak east of the Mississippi is actually Mount Mitchell at 6684 ft in NC).

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One of the trains down at the station. The trailhead for Ammo is up and to the right and the trailhead for Jewell is to the left!
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The tracks! Near the tracks the whole length of the mountain there are chunks of black coal from the train #leavenotrace ?

We took the Ammonoosuc Ravine Trail up, and the Jewell Trail down.  Those trails are on the cog railway station side of the mountain. Someday I really want to do the Tuckerman Ravine Trail which is the most popular trail and is on the Pinkham Notch side. There are a few features over there I want to see like the Harvard cabin and the Lunch Rocks. My husband convinced me that a beautiful summer Sunday was not the day to do the most popular trail there 🙂

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Views from a summit are beautiful but I think sights like this are pretty amazing too
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Looks like a great spot for a dip!
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Lakes in the Clouds Hut…..literally in a cloud on this day!
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Misty lakes near the hut
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Another misty lake view, visibility was low!

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The Tip Top House, built as a hotel in 1853 is the oldest structure on Mt. Washington, and might be the oldest mountain top holstery in the world! The last time I was up on top of Mt. Washington in March of 2015, the Tip Top House had snow up the to the top of the windows, you could only see the roof!!

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MWOBS- The Observatory! I would love to stay the night sometime or be a volunteer at the observatory when I retire or something.
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I did have to wait in a short line behind both hikers and people that drove or took the train up. I guess its just part of Mt. Washington’s deal in the summer.
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Walking down the Jewell Trail- the sun came out!
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Great Gulf- formed by a glacier! The lake down there is Spaulding Lake

Mt. Washington is more than just a part of the White Mountain National Forest, its a New Hampshire State Park. In the summer months, summit visitors can check out the Tip Top House which is sorta staged like the hotel it once was, enjoy the amazing views, hit up a gift shop, check out weather exhibits, and get a slice of pizza at the little food court. It was bizarre to say the least. Also, the cell service is amazing up there; I passed no less than 4 hikers on their phones on the Jewell Trail coming down : | It is what it is, Mt. Washington is special and so we all must share it. My memories of being up there in a winter wonderland with maybe 3 other people the last time I was there are now even more precious. It was definitely a long day; cool, raw, and misty to start, and then sun beating on us above treeline coming down. Thats how it is with Washington though, you obsess over the forecast in the days leading up to your hike, but truly you have no idea.

It wasn’t Mt. Washington until the late 1700s. Before then it was known by its Native American name, Agiocochook, which means “Home of the Great Spirit”. This mountain definitely lives up to that name.

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Mt. Moosilauke: 1st 4K Hike Postbaby!

I am officially back into hiking!! We stopped exclusive pumping as Cabot passed 9 months and I was looking forward to getting back into the White Mountains. Over the past year, the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge got a huge facelift, and I have been excited to get over there to see it. This was my 4th time hiking Mt. Moosilauke, and yes I saw something on this hike that I never noticed before…..read on to find out more!

SO I will start with the lodge, which is actually a collection of buildings. There’s the main lodge which was renovated and then the bunkhouses, each standing in the name of the gifts for different classes.

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The new main lodge!
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Main Lodge
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Class of 1965 Bunkhouse
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Class of 1974 Bunkhouse
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Class of 1967 Bunkhouse
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Moosilauke Ravine Lodge from above!

They are still working on the access road to the lodge and culverts and such, but the new lodge looks great!

We took the Gorge Trail for this hike. Mt. Moosilauke is really a lovely hike. There is much Dartmouth Outing Club history on the trail up from the lodge. The trails are very well signed and taken care of thanks to the Dartmouth student trail crew.

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Information kiosk where we began!
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The cutest little trail dog, Mizpah, heading out!
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Trail crews sometimes leave signs commemorating their work
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Up on the summit!
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Our hiking group posing with the button on the summit. A picture with the geological marker is a must for my husband!
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Beautiful mountain views all the way around on the summit

On the summit, remnants of the stone foundation for the old summit hotel can be seen. It was originally built in 1860 and called The Prospect House but the name was changed to the Tip-Top House. It burned down in 1942.

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Stone Foundation left behind from the Tip-Top House

Now! To the thing that I never noticed on the previous three hikes of Mt. Moosilauke! There is a concrete foundation visible from the summit that was from a shelter that was removed in 1978.

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Concrete foundation for the shelter removed in 1978.

I almost fell over when I saw that from the summit, and then I actually had a hard time finding it along the trail. I guess they tried to use a jackhammer to remove the foundation but it was just too much work.

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Finished the hike!
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Tired little Mizpah eating her lunch back at the car

We had great weather for this hike. The forecast actually said “sunny and delightful” for Warren NH. Typically the summit is very windy because its the first tall mountain from Vermont. It was a lovely first hike back after over a year of missing hiking. Coming down Gorge Brook, a thru hiker passed us. We wondered where he was heading. Sure enough he came back and said, “This isn’t the AT huh?” We laughed. Good sense of humor probably helps doing the AT. He meant to go down the Beaver Brook Trail and probably planned to stay at that shelter. The Beaver Brook Trail from what I have heard is a hard one.

Anyways, here are my other Mt. Moosilauke posts! You can see the old lodge in one of them.

Mt. Moosilauke Hike on the Carriage Road

Dartmouth Outing Club & Mt. Moosilauke (has a pic of the old lodge)

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Mother’s Day weekend at the Mountain View Grand

I have always been enamored with the days of the big old wooden hotels in the White Mountain region of New Hampshire. Sadly, many of these hotels burned down or were torn down from disrepair due to financial hardships brought on by easier transportation. The days of the grand old hotels came to an end when patrons could drive to the mountains for a day trip. Only a few of the grand old hotels remain and I have made it my mission to see them!

This past mother’s day weekend, we stayed at the Mountain View Grand in Whitefield NH. This beautiful hotel dates back to 1865 and began as many hotels did in that time. William and Mary Dodge opened their family farmhouse to boarders passing through the area and named their inn the Mountain View House. Many additions later, the hotel has 200 guest rooms and the very well known tower rose to 89′. Due to financial issues, the hotel actually closed in 1985. It was reopened with new life in 2002 after many renovations.

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There is a hot tub up at the top of the tower that you can reserve for a truly romantic evening.

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Adirondack chair heaven
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One of the beautiful little spots at MVG, imagine wedding photos here
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View of the mountains on the golf course, look at that alpen glow!

While at the hotel, my husband and I played tennis on their Australian clay courts. We ran on their trail system and swam in the indoor pool. They also have an outdoor pool but it was still a bit cool for that. They also have farm animals and gardens at the Mountain View Grand. A popular activity that we didn’t participate in is the axe throwing! There is also an 18 hole golf course onsite.

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Lower tennis courts, the red building there is the farm!
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Beautiful mountain views while playing tennis on the upper courts
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Ruined chimney seen on our trail run!

For dining options, they have a restaurant and bar onsite for casual dining called the Harvest Tavern. We ate dinner at the bar and did the breakfast buffet in the restaurant. Their fine dining option is called the 1865 Wine Cellar and requires reservations. The menu is a fixed price menu and I believe there’s only a handful of tables down there. They do a daily tour of the wine cellar, otherwise you can’t really go see it unless you are eating down there. There is also a menu available across the street at the clubhouse by the the pool. We ate there once a couple years ago with a group after my husband’s grandfather’s funeral and the only thing I will say is the service was a bit slow. Before dinner we did partake in the smores at the firepit over by the pool clubhouse. It was fun making a smore and enjoying the mountain views.

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View from the tavern for our Mother’s Day breakfast buffet
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The buffet was amazing!

So what mountains are you viewing…..well you can see the Presidential Range and the Twins from the front veranda. In the back you can see Waumbek and Cabot I believe. I love the views….but I will admit the views from the Mt. Washington Hotel veranda are more impressive.

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I took this photo with that tree strategically covering the wind turbine 🙂

I really enjoyed our stay at the Mountain View Grand. There was a wedding going on the last time we were there and the ballroom and outdoor spaces for a wedding were just gorgeous. There is a spa right there at the hotel too. They also have some great green initiatives. They have their own wind energy turbine and they use paper straws. We stopped at a couple breweries on the way too which was fun. Schilling Beer Co in Littleton, NH and Reklis Brewing in Bethlehem, NH both have great beer, atmosphere, and food!

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Seven months later…returning to the blog!

Hello everyone!! I can’t believe that my last blog post on here was October 3, 2017.  My amazing son Cabot was born on September 29th at 7:05 PM. He weighed 7 lb 9 oz and was 19 inches long. Now my little Cab is over 18 lbs, and over 27 inches long! The past seven months have been challenging and hectic at times, and I really just wanted to let myself return to my blog without any pressure; when I was ready.

Cabot’s first two months were full of stress over his weight, marathon breastfeeding sessions, 5 am bed times, and many tears (sometimes from Cabot, sometimes me, sometimes both haha). Around 2 months I started pumping for bottles so we could make sure he was getting enough….then he was diagnosed with a lip & tongue tie and had laser surgery to fix that…..then there was still a mix of breastfeeding and pumping bottles….then I went back to work in January and have been exclusively pumping ever since. In the midst of all of that, my little guy has absolutely stolen our hearts, there have been snuggles, kisses, smiles, and yes since six months old, he sleeps through the night, 7 PM to somewhere between 6:30-8 AM. Breastfeeding was hard, pumping is hard, but I really wanted Cabot to have breastmilk until at least 9 months and I am physically able to do it, so we carry on. I am freezing at least a bottle every day to so he can have a breastmilk bottle a day until he turns 1 if we choose to stop pumping at 9 months.

Motherhood has really taught me humility. I have always been an overachiever in school, my job, and any extracurricular activities I participate in. I wanted to give birth naturally and breastfeed for a year. I got the epidural at hour 12 and breastfeeding alone wasn’t getting enough food to Cabot. The world kept spinning.

As Cabot is getting older, I am recovering little bits of my life 🙂 I started running again, my husband and I have had some fun date nights, and we even have a night at the Mountain View Grand in Whitefield NH planned soon! Cabot is a good eater and a good sleeper, his smile just makes your day, and thankfully he smiles often. He crawls like a man on a mission and has been pulling himself to stand up on any furniture or toy he deems sturdy enough. Here’s some of my fave pics with my little man.

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Cabot at 3 months! New Year’s Day Brunch at the barn. LLBean Shearling Boots here. So warm for winter, get them NOW for next winter!
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Cabot at 6 months for National Stripes Day! It’s a J Crew holiday but we both went with Ralph Lauren for the occasion ❤
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Cabot at 7 months old in Florida visiting my parents! Wearing the GiGi V-Neck Tank, print from last summer, sold out 😦

I am really looking forward to spending the summer home with Cabot. We already have parent-baby swim classes scheduled, first friends playgroup and story time at the local children’s museum, and hopefully many trips to the beach! I hope everyone out there in the blogosphere has had a great 2018 so far!

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P.S. If anyone reading this is struggling with breastfeeding and pumping, just know that you are NOT alone, and whatever choices YOU make for your own health and the health of your baby are right and ok!! I have been subjected to judgement from all sides- from people telling me to just give up already and switch to formula to people telling me I wasn’t trying hard enough to breastfeed…I could write a whole post about this alone, ha.

A Day at Winslow Park, Freeport ME

Every year we camp up at the Winslow Park & Campground for Labor Day Weekend, but this year being 37 weeks pregnant made us think twice! Instead we just went up for the day to enjoy some time with friends and enjoy the scenery. We spent the day at the campground with our friends and did make a trip to Mainely Custard and Maine Beer Co. which are just down the street. Usually when we are there for the whole weekend, we go into the Freeport shopping area for a day and visit LLBean and such, BUT we didn’t want to deal with the crowds just being up there for a day.

We played with our new camera a little bit and tried to get some shots of scenery and of me and my beautifully large baby bump to have for posterity’s sake. I didn’t want a full maternity shoot, but these few photos that my husband took in one of our favorite places are so simple and I don’t know…quiet? I really like how they came out 🙂

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The dress I am wearing is the most comfortable maxi from Old Navy seen here for just $25.

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Jon caught me in sort of an emotional moment here, I cry at the drop of a hat right now ha, so the fact that I shed tears here, pretty typical.

The house on Pound of Tea Island is one of my favorite landmarks that you can see from the park. I go check it out every year. It was just one bedroom, has its own little dock, and its just so cute. Well, I went to check it out this year and it is getting some work down!! Looks like they redid the shingling on the outside (it used to be blue) and added a second floor! Now, why is it called Pound of Tea Island? Story goes that early settlers paid the American Indians a pound of tea in exchange for the island! In 2015, it was sold for around a half a million sooooo the value of this island has really increased over the years, ha!

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Cute little lobster boat coming into Harraseeket River from the bay
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This is just a shot of the dock into Casco Bay from the Harb Cottage, a house that you can rent through a lottery through the Winslow Park & Campground. We have talked about putting in for the lottery, it would be so fun to stay there!

When we were planning the day, I was holding out for a trip into town to go to Ben and Jerry’s but I was convinced to try Mainely Custard. What they serve is very similar to ice cream, but it does contain egg. It gives it more of a smooth/creamy texture and it was a little less sweet than ice cream. I loooooved it! They typically have chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry, and then one or two special flavors that they make daily. When I went, the special flavor was butterscotch, so I got a scoop of butterscotch and a scoop of chocolate. It was delicious, I am a convert! I guess there is a location in Kennebunkport too! From there we met up with friends at the Maine Beer Co. which btw is undergoing a big expansion. Very exciting for a great brewery!

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By the time this posts, I might have a baby! He is really enjoying life on the inside, but we shall see what the next days bring. I have cleaned literally everything in the house, we have a month of freezer meals stored, I made cookies, hospital bags are packed, and the nursery is set up- all we need now is our little man!

Send me some of those good-breezy-easy going-sneezed and he popped out-makes all the other women jealous-healthy baby boy at the end-birth story vibes k? 🙂

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Dog Friendly Beach in Rye NH!!

Alright folks, one day past my due date..continuing to distract myself through writing 🙂

We found a beach in NH that Mizpah can be off leash on!!! Wooo!!! New Hampshire’s state beaches which include Hampton, North Hampton, Wallis Sands, Rye Harbor, and Jenness do not allow dogs EVER. These beaches do not allow dogs in the mornings, evenings, or in the off season. Now, we have of course seen violations of this rule in the off season, but we are rule followers. Rye NH has a stretch of beach that is considered to be a town beach though and before 9 AM, dogs are allowed under voice control! They even have the little dog poo bag stations for us responsible dog owners AND streetside parking is free! Its not the longest stretch of beach, and at high tide you definitely need to prepare to be in the surf with your pup BUT its still worth it for us. Changing up Mizpah’s scenery is great for her, and I love being at the beach. Alrighty, here are some pics of beautiful Rye Beach and our little pup romping through the surf!

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Hazy morning at the beach
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Mizpah looooves playing fetch with her ball in the surf. She will dunk her whole face and head in the water to get her ball, its so cute. 

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In the distance, you can see the building with the red roof which is Ray’s Seafood. We totally use that red roof as a landmark to know where our car is and climb back up the jetty back out to the road.
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My little water lovin pup!
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View from the jetty, you can see the white tent in the distance, not a bad spot out on the jetty for an event eh?
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The lovely Ray’s Seafood!

The picnic area at Ray’s is dog friendly 🙂 These pics are from two different occasions in case you noticed that Mizpah has a harness on in some, and no harness in some ha. Going to the beach before 9AM means dealing with some haze, but it usually clears up a bit by the time we leave. Starting the day with a walk on the beach and a tired, happy pup is pretty great! We are so happy we found a close beach that is more dog friendly. The beaches in York ME are probably equally as close BUT pups have to be on leash. Hope you enjoyed the frolicking Mizpah pics!

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Fall Wardrobe Picks!

Good morning!!! Happy first day of fall!!!

I am sitting here 39 weeks pregnant, home from work with gestational high blood pressure (not preeclampsia thankfully) trying to stay busy! I will be on maternity leave and really trying to save money this fall/winter so I am committed to NOT shopping for a while, but I couldn’t help sharing my faves for new fall staples!

The two websites I always gravitate to are J Crew Factory and LLBean, so here are my picks!

J. Crew Factory

Cotton V-Neck Sweater in Light Mustard- $29.50 Its time for the sweaters to come back out!!! I love the v-neck because it looks great by itself, and then later in winter you can layer the button downs and flannels underneath. The light mustard color is great for fall.

Tweed Mini Skirt- $51.00 Every year J Crew Factory has a cute plaid mini or tweed mini that becomes such a classic, and I am really loving this one!

Cuffed Striped Boatneck Shirt- $29.50 So this shirt might not scream fall so much, but I love a long sleeve navy and white stripe shirt as it gets cooler and while I am not sure how nice the cuff looks in real life, I would be open to checking it out!

LLBean

Mountain Pile Fleece Jacket- $79.99-89 I am really loving this fleece zipup with the Katahdin LLBean logo tag. This is the sandstone color which is one of the ones that is on sale for the cheaper price point.

Tumbled-Leather LLBean Boots- Flannel Lined- $149 These Bean boots are a part of the small batch boot collection. They are being released in October but you can order them now and the website says they are backordered at the moment. I want these….real bad, but I know I should resist- we’ll see haha.

Scotch Plaid Shirt Slightly Fitted- $49.95 I can’t recommend the LLBean Scotch plaid flannel shirts enough. I want them in every color and want to live in them all fall and winter. The color I featured is ‘Princess Mary’ which I really like. These sell out pretty fast usually, so get em now while all the colors are still in stock!

Signature Cotton Fisherman Tunic Sweater- $99.00 I have a couple of the regular sweaters which I love, but I really like this longer tunic sweater too! I would definitely get the black cherry color because I think its such a nice fall color.

Signature Merino Textured Fair Isle Crewneck- $99.00 This is the one thing that I actually DID buy! I love bird sweaters, and am obsessed with loons. I have been looking for a loon sweater for a few years now. This is a reproduction of a sweater LLBean made back in the 80s I believe. I can’t wait to be able to wear this one 🙂

What are your fall favorites this year? I will admit, every year I look forward to all the fall bucket list/fall wardrobe staples blog posts. I love this season; its so fun that my little boy will be a fall baby! Enjoy the first weekend of fall!

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MS Mount Washington Cruise

One sort of touristy thing that I have wanted to do since we moved to New Hampshire is take a cruise on the MS Mount Washington around Lake Winnepesaukee. Their website with the schedule and event info is here. Since I have had to be careful out on friends’s smaller boats with the pregnancy, this summer seemed like the perfect time to head out on the nice large and stable MS Mount Washington!

We went out on a Sunday, so the boat left from Alton Bay and motored to Weirs Beach in Laconia, and then came back. They had a brunch buffet on board but we brought a picnic of our own to save some dollars! It was a beautiful day and we got to try out our new camera. We have been wanting to get a nice camera for a while now, but definitely the impending arrival of our son who will surely be our favorite subject made us finally get one. We got a Nikon D3300 and so far so good. These are some of my favorite snaps from the day!

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Here’s our boat coming into Alton Bay!!
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Captain’s Office!
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35 weeks pregnant here!!
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This is Kimball Castle! Built in the 1890s by Benjamin Kimball, who was president of the Boston, Montreal, and Concord Railways. Interesting article of when it had fallen into disarray and was for sale for just 799,000 in 2013 can be seen here.
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Up on top of Brickyard Mountain in Weirs Beach is a structure that looks like a light house, but its actually fake! It’s actually a water tower and cell phone tower for the area.
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It was windy the day we were out, probably perfect for sailing!!
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One of the very large houses on luxurious Governor’s Island in Gilford. Looked like this one had a for sale sign out on the water, want to guess how many millions of dollars this beauty is going for?
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Pulling back into Alton Bay, this lovely home on this cute little island was just begging to be photographed.

Lake Winnepesaukee is beautiful, and a cruise on the MS Mount Washington is a great way to see it! On other days, the boat goes to Wolfeboro which is one of my favorite towns, and also Meredith & Center Harbor. All of the port towns on the lake where the boat stops have their own vibe and character. Center Harbor is probably the quietest with really just the Mug on the Bay, and Weirs Beach might be the liveliest with restaurants, bars, and nightlife. Wolfeboro has a cute street of restaurants and shopping right off the boat. Meredith has the Town Docks restaurant which is popular, and Alton Bay has some food places like Shibley’s athe Pier and Pop’s Clam Shell too.  Another couple that we chatted with on the boat was celebrating their one year anniversary. They had their wedding on the Mount Washington and brought the top of the wedding cake to share while on the cruise- so sweet!

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Kayaking Adventures in New Hampshire

I am so grateful for this gloriously uneventful pregnancy. We are at 34 weeks this week and thankfully I am still able to take Mizpah for walks, kayak around while Jon fishes, and go to a couple spin classes a week. Now, my walks with Miz have gotten shorter. Jon is still able to run and mountain bike with her so she is still getting plenty of exercise. My kayak adventures are not very strenuous and when I go to spin classes, I am careful not to overdo it with the jumps- the stand up, sit down type stuff.

I have been really enjoying the kayaking a lot. I was a camp counselor in the summer for years and took my campers out to kayak around and find frogs and turtles. It was fun, but it was a part of the job meaning I was watching my campers and it was NOT always relaxing ha. Every year we camp up on Casco Bay in Freeport ME, and I would go out and kayak around which was awesome, but it was a once a year thing. This summer being a little limited in the activity I can do, my husband and I started going out with the kayak for me and the float tube for Jon to fly fish.

We have gone to Lucas Pond in Northwood NH, Stonehouse Pond in Barrington NH, and I paddled around Pawtuckaway Lake in Nottingham NH while Jon ran with Mizpah on the trails. Jon did catch a trout at Stonehouse which was exciting! Its getting a little late in the summer to catch trout in the ponds though, they hide out in the cool depths in the heat. I have seen some loons which was amazing, some herons, ducks, and some beavers. Kayaking has been great to have an upper body workout and get to be outside doing something. Here are some of my favorite pics from paddling out and about!

Lucas Pond

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There are some really cute houses on this pond as well as a summer camp! Cool thing about this pond is only non motorized craft are allowed. We saw lots of kayaks, canoes, paddleboats, and swimmers…..and honestly my favorite little swimmer was the loon that let me get so close! It was great.

Stonehouse Pond

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Top pic is from an evening paddle and the bottom two are from a morning paddle. This was the smallest of the three bodies of water. People kayak, swim, float, and there is a trail that goes around the pond to the top of the stone. There is a serious beaver family living here, like a compound of lodges, but so fun to see them out swimming around!

Pawtuckaway Lake

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Great blue heron!
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Loony for loons!

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Top two pics are from one evening, bottom two are from another! Pawtuckaway Lake is the biggest body of water I kayaked this summer. Actually I only saw half of it, it would have taken me toooo long to get to the other side. This body of water has lots of trails, a campground, a beach which is sadly contaminated with cyanobacteria at the moment, some houses, and this one allows motorized craft. No trout in this lake, just bass, so this is where I kayak when Jon is running the trails with Miz.

Any other paddlers out there? I really wish I could get into standup paddleboarding, maybe in the next couple years! Hope you enjoy my amateur wildlife/nature kayak pics!

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