This month our family went on vacation to Swan's Island (off Mount Desert Island), marking the first ever "destination vacation" for our family of three. Actually, first one for John and me since our honeymoon! We stayed at the Block House on the north point of the island, the same house I grew up going to every summer.
Leaving the Bass Harbor Ferry terminal.
All of us on the ferry . . .
Kattie came out for the first few days of our vacation, and it was such fun to have her there!
Packed to the max! You can barely see the Munchkin!
Who was very good, she slept almost the whole three hours to the ferry.
As soon as we got to the house, we headed down to the water to relax.
On Sunday afternoon we headed to the beach (there is one sandy beach on the island).
Sophia did a face plant, but didn't even mind! She just looked like the Phantom for a little while.
The Snuggler discovered a love of seaweed while at the beach.
BACK AT THE BLOCK HOUSE
Kattie kept an ear out for the Snuggler while John and I headed down to find some mussels. Turns out John is an excellent mussel hunter!
And here he is, eating mussels for the first time. I had several, and decided that was my quota for the year. John liked them pretty well, though when I asked later in the week if he wanted to have more the answer was no . . .
We said goodbye to Paraplegic Baby on the island, as now Sophia is up on all four full time, no more dragging her legs along behind her while she crawls.
She also pulled herself up to stand all by herself for the first time . . . now to learn to get back down a bit more gracefully!
We only had one foggy day the whole week, the rest of the time was bright and sunny!
By mid-week we had a nice routine down. John took Sophia down to the beach for an early morning walk while I fixed breakfast. After breakfast she settled down for a nap, and John and I sat out on the deck in the Adirondack chairs drinking coffee and reading for a couple hours. Then she would get up, and we would go on some sort of adventure till her afternoon nap, at which point John and I would crash out on the deck again, or walk down to the beach, or nap ourselves. It was wonderful!!!
It was exhilarating to be out on such a wild and windy day!
Sophia had her first (and only, so far!) marshmallow cooked over a fire, and being a sugar bug like her mama, seemed to love it. She couldn't quite manage to eat a whole one, but it was a valiant effort.
Promptly thereafter she went into a sugar coma, and just chilled with Dada before bed.
We had a fire every night but one, mainly so I could maximize my s'more eating. Dinner, fire, reading, games, s'mores, ahhhhhh!
Of course, with a flash you can't see my perfect s'more coals, but they are there, believe me!
Sophia enjoyed playing out on the deck . . .
. . . but really, I don't think there was anywhere she didn't enjoy.
While we were out on Swan's, we had a photographer on the island do some family portraits, which we had wanted to have done with Sophia turning on.
It was so special to have the photos taken on the island.
THE WALK AROUND THE NORTH POINT
One of our noon time adventures was a walk around the point, which seemed much shorter to me than it felt as a kid!
Off in the distance you can see Mount Desert Island, and much closer you can see the seagulls that never failed to excite a reaction from Sophia. She LOVED the seagulls!
Over the last couple years, repairs have been ongoing at the lighthouse. Now the windows have been refurbished (not replaced, the original windows are still there) and the outside has new siding.
The electrician was there when we were, and let us go inside the house. So exciting, I had never been before! It hasn't been open to the public in over 30 years. You can see the condition prior to repairs . . .
And how it looks with the plaster and original windows repaired! The floors will be refinished, and eventually the Keeper's House will be a community center.
When we left the lighthouse, we headed over to the rock quarry, another new place to show John and Sophia. From there we could see another view of the lighthouse, so pretty!
It wasn't quite hot enough to go swimming, which was just as well as neither of us had brought our bathing suits with us that day.
We did walk the loop around the quarry, and I had forgotten what a beautiful view you could see from the top!
BACK AT THE BLOCK HOUSE
Sophia would sit and play as long as we would let her . . .
. . . and eat as much as she could get her hands on! I think she liked the salt taste of the seaweed and shells.
John's mission on the island was to collect sea glass for Sophia's room. He amassed quite a collection!
My goal was to collect sand dollars. We found three before we took our walk around the point, and I was pretty disappointed not to find more.
Then on our walk we found 81 more! Now I have all the sand dollars I could possibly use for decorations in Sophia's room. For sure I am going to make a shadow box frame with 3x3 or 4x4. I'll blog a picture of it when I do!
John's final sea glass collection, now to find a pretty container to put it all in.
Back on the ferry, headed home, with a final look back at the Block House.
We had a wonderful time, and I didn't even mention our blackberry picking, or mouse killing (John was a hunter and a gatherer on vacation!), or so many other little memorable moments we had. As my favorite blogger would say, we "sucked the marrow out of life" that week. Now to remember to treasure the ordinary times together just as much!