Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Easter/Spring Break

We just finished about a week and a half of Easter vacation and Spring Break all rolled into one long, exhausting, but wonderful holiday. My parents flew out to spend the first half of it with us and then we wrapped up the week by driving down to Maryland for our niece's birthday. In the course of our adventures we hit nine different states. (OK, Pennsylvania was a wrong exit mistake. Damn you, Jersey Turnpike!)

We had a little Pre-Easter at Mike's parents' the weekend before.
This is one of the best photos he's even taken of the girls.

The girls are at a great age right now for going on adventures with their Nana and Papa.

We went to Salem to wander around town and visit The House of the Seven Gables.

The museum is actually a collection of buildings, including the house Nathaniel Hawthorne was born in, and a beautiful garden overlooking the ocean. The actual House of the Seven Gables (shown) was owned by Hawthorne's cousin, and he was inspired by his visits there to use it as the setting for his novel of the same name in 1851.

Running in the Garden

Papa and Maggie and the Sea.

They have some cute and interesting stuff for kids in the garden and in the former Counting House.

A spinning demonstration in the Jacobean Hooper-Hathaway House (built 1682).

After we left Salem, we went up to Plum Island, but it was too windy to stay on the beach very long. Maggie did not fall in this time!

Dying Eggs on Saturday Night

Easter morning

The following day was Boston Marathon Monday, aka Patriot's Day. It's a holiday for the city of Boston because the crowds and the race route make it almost impossible to get around town or to work. We decided to head out and around to avoid the chaos, and ended up at the Minute Man National Historical Park between Lexington and Concord. It was unintentional as far as the timing, but it turned out to be really cool to be there on Patriot's Day.

Minute Man National Park

The American Revolution began right on this road on April 19, 1775. 1,700 British soldiers marched out of Boston and up the Bay Road to confiscate stockpiled weapons from the colonial militia men. Not only Paul Revere (who went right down Main Street in the town where I live), but also William Dawes and Samuel Prescott rode through the night to Lexington and Concord to warn the colonists. The first shots were fired on Lexington Green at dawn, and then the British advanced to Concord where they were met by more Minute Men on the North Bridge. After the Regulars fired and killed two colonists, the treasonous order to return fire was given. This is the famous "shot heard round the world," after which the colonials chased the British all the way back to Charlestown. At the end of the day, 49 Minute Men and 73 British soldiers were dead. A week later, the British were cornered in Boston (which was on a peninsula at the time) and under a siege that would last 11 months until the war ended.

Mom and Dad on the Battle Road

Hartwell Tavern

Papa teaches Maggie the finer points of tree hugging.

The Hartwell House burned down in 1968, leaving only this enormous chimney stack and cellar foundation. It was fascinating to be able to see in this preservation structure how Colonial era houses were built and heated.

There was plenty of room for the girls to run in the sun...

... and climb trees. Maggie is surely part monkey.

The North Bridge

The Minute Man Statue is behind us.

The next day, we took my parents up to Portsmouth, NH, one of my favorite New England cities. We drove up through Exeter and Newmarket and Durham, which are all quaint little towns, and then wandered through the shops and pretty streets of downtown Portsmouth. Even though it was closed for the winter, we were also able to walk around the Strawbery Banke Museum grounds and look at the colonial and Georgian houses.

Tugboats in Portsmouth Harbor

Eventually we ended up having dinner in Kittery, which is the town directly across the Piscataqua River in Maine. So... Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and then a few days later Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, (Pennsylvania, oops), Delaware, and Maryland. Nine states!


The best part of the trip, though, was just to spend some time with my parents, chatting, playing with the girls, and eating pastries from our local Italian bakery. We had such a wonderful time!


  1. I am jealous! I looks like such a fun time was had by all. Please keep the itinerary, as I will want to see it all next time I visit!! :)

  2. Come on up any time! There were so many things we talked about doing and didn't get around to, but we had a ton of fun. Thanks for all your comments! :)


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