Sadler House

Sadler House

Rockland, Maine

New in Rockland, Maine – 2016!

New in Rockland - 2016If I’ve learned anything about Rockland, Maine in the time we’ve been here, it’s that it will constantly be changing. I thought a lot of new things had happened in 2015, but posting a round up of what’s new in Rockland for 2016 is an even bigger task!

Fond Farewell

Change is good, but it’s still sad to say goodbye to some of the old businesses that made way for the new. Most notably from our point of view, favorites The Thorndike Creamery, The Blackboard Deli, Comida, and The Brown Bag are no longer with us.

The good news is, some very exciting new people have come to occupy a few of the old spaces. Furthermore, there is a spectacular new art attraction in town for me to tell you about. Without further ado, here are some wonderful new developments coming in downtown Rockland, Maine! Read more →

Wi-Fi Password Sign For Cabins – Free Printable

I have never been the camping type, despite my long stint with the Girl Scouts. Sure, I did my share of slogging through the woods and sleeping in tents, but I’d really prefer a well-furnished cabin than a campsite by the lake. I’m a grown-up now and I get to decide!
WiFi Password Sign - Free Printable

Some would say it’s not a vacation if you take your computer. My husband, however, actually left on a ski trip once with two laptops and no clothing in his luggage, so you can see what side of the argument we are on.

Still, many luxury vacation rentals happen to channel the pleasures of cabins in the woods without sacrificing the modern conveniences. If yours is just such a cabin, I’ve got the wi-fi pun for you!

Wi-Fi Password Sign for Cabins

Download and print this just so you can make your guests laugh – and they will be laughing (instead of crabby and crying) because they will be able to access your wi-fi. I’m sure the Girl Scouts have some sort of “Connectivity Skills” badge, anyway.

Click here to download the sign. You can either scrawl in your password with a Sharpie or use a free photo editor like Pickmonkey to easily add your password using type. Anything goes, as long as people stay calm and log on!

Do you happen to need a wi-fi password sign for a beach house? Try this one!  We also have a coastal-themed “No Smoking” sign.

Sadler House February 8, 2016 1 Comment Permalink

Wi-Fi Password Sign – Free Printable

Okay, so I’m old enough to remember saying “Surf the web.” Is that so wrong? I happen to have noticed that most of our guests (with the exclusion of the children) are also “of a certain internet lingo age.” Therefore, you must all forgive me for having a little fun with Ye Olde Wi-Fi Password sign.

Free Coastal WiFi Password SignIf admitting you remember AOL isn’t too embarrassing, and you like a good coastal joke, feel free to print as many of these as you want and hang them in your vacation rental for your guests to enjoy.

Hey – nobody is laughing at you when they urgently need the Wi-Fi is all I’m saying.

Free Coastal Wi-Fi Password Printable

You can either print these and use a Sharpie to scrawl the password on them (all laid back-like) or you can just pop over to picmonkey.com, open this file, and use their type function to superimpose your password in our image so that it looks a little slicker. Then save the file again and print it. I found this is perfect when printed on letter size photo paper and trimmed to 8×10 size.

Click here to begin.

Surf’s up, even if your AOL is down…

Hey – any chance you need a coastal-themed No Smoking sign? Check out ours!

 

National Toboggan Championships!

Far from closing down in the winter, the midcoast is a hotbed of activity at the beginning of February, thanks to Camden Winterfest and the U.S. National Toboggan Championships. The activities include snow sculpting, skiing and snowboarding, and a polar plunge, among other fun winter pastimes.

There is even a snow plow parade and everyone is treated to fireworks over the Camden harbor.

 

Tobogganing in Minnesota - 1975

My brother and me with my mom in Minnesota – 1975

What I dream of doing, though, is flying down the toboggan chute. When I was a kid, my dad used to take us sledding (in Minnesota, Colorado, and Nebraska) on a plastic toboggan that rolled right up. That thing FLEW. We had so many great winter days on that toboggan.

The U.S. Toboggan Championships at the Camden Snow Bowl are a festive, grown-up version of that.

Read more →

Vacation Rental Decor You’ll Love

Vacation rental decor has evolved.

Remember when you used to browse the listings and be faced with one house after another, all furnished with somebody’s cast-off recliner and mismatched sheets? Those houses are still out there, but there’s no reason for you to stay in one of them when there are so many owners using their great taste and creativity to create wonderful settings for your vacations.

Vacation Rental Decor for Everyone

We all drool over the homes in the design magazines and populate our Pinterest boards with their zillion dollar dream rooms. But is staying in an adorable or inspiring or luxurious setting just a dream for most of us? Isn’t that stunning decor by designers and for designers?

Not anymore.

In my time as a vacation home owner, I have met so many wonderful people who have inspiring vacation rentals in the perfect places. I asked a few of them if they’d be willing to share just one of their favorite rooms with me and explain how (and why) they put the space together that way. The best part is, these are homes you can go and rent, yourself! See how these extraordinary ordinary people are bringing the style to the homes that host your trip.

Vermont Chalet
California Beach Cottage
Texas Beach House
Maine Coastal New Englander Read more →

Vacation Home Expenses: Budgeting for Your Dream

I didn’t grow up with people who had vacation homes, so it seemed pretty ballsy to our friends and family when my husband and I started planning to buy our dream home in Maine. Naturally, a major concern was whether or not we could afford it. With all the time it took us to save the downpayment, I had years to crunch the numbers on our future vacation home expenses from here to Sunday. I figured out how much mortgage, tax, and insurance were likely to drain us monthly. I estimated how much more we’d need to add to our emergency savings. I did the figuring about how much it would help us if we could rent the house weekly to other vacationers.

Oh, I did the math.

Vacation Home Expenses: Don't forget furnishingsVacation Home Dreams Meet Real World Expenses

In 2013, we realized our dream of buying Sadler House, and I signed a thousand papers with very sweaty hands. With some self-control, we managed to buy a home that was within the budget I had allocated to us. We crossed our fingers and moved forward.

We’ve owned and rented this beloved home now for more than two years, and I have learned about expenses that even my copious calculations didn’t previously anticipate. All in all, we’ve been very happy with our decision. Based on my experience, however, I thought I could spare some future owners a little grief by sharing a list of expenses to consider when they budget for their own dream vacation homes.

First, the obvious. Read more →

Rockland Restaurant Dishes: 5 You Must Try!

UPDATE: This article is a few years old now and, as things do, these restaurants have changed! For more up-to-date info on Rockland restaurants visit our Rockland Restaurants page. For a comprehensive and more current list of midcoast restaurants, check out our Midcoast Restaurants resource!

 

I knRockland Maine Restaurants - Must-Try Dishesow what you think I’m going to say about Rockland restaurant recommendations: eat lobster. It’s undeniable that lobster is one of the most exciting attractions in Rockland, Maine — and why not? We’re at the epicenter of the lobstering community here.

Rockland Restaurants: A Main(e) Attraction

Whether you’re looking for a break from eating your vacation quota of lobster, or you aren’t a lobster fan (gasp) or you just want to find out what else our chefs can do, start here. Read more →

Tic Tac Toe Keepsake

In order to give guests the optimal experience at your vacation rental, it’s important to pay attention to those little extras. Years ago, before we had our own place, we stayed at a vacation rental in the area of Luray, Virginia. When we arrived, the owner had left us a basket of goodies, including a pound cake she had baked, herself. Between that and the generous stack of white towels, we were immediately predisposed to enjoy our stay. We felt very welcome.Tic Tac Toe Keepsake - DIY

Now that we are sharing Sadler House with guests, we try to carry on our own gift basket tradition. We aren’t living next door, so we can’t bake each guest a fresh pound cake. Instead, I’ve tried to come up with fun little crafts that our guests will find both charming and useful. We hope that these little touches and a welcome card will make show our guests how thankful we are to be hosting them.

Recently, I was scrolling through Pinterest and I came to a stop at this craft by Megan at the blog Balancing Home. The product was an adorable little tic tac toe set that was made from rocks and carried in a teeny burlap bag.

While I was reading the post, I started pondering how I might incorporate this craft into my gift baskets. I resolved to find some sort of rocks and burlap bags on my next trip to the craft store and give it a go.

Well, we all know you rarely find exactly what you’re looking for, right? Instead of the natural burlap bags, I happened upon a stack of sea foam green ones on clearance in the cake decorating aisle, of all places. I got a bunch of them for 50 cents each. The color reminded me a bit of a Tiffany box, and I hatched a plan to make my tic tac toe kit a little fancier. Here’s what I did, and I hope you love the results as much as I do! Read more →

Decorating Your Vacation Rental: 5 Important Tips

Decorating their vacation rental is something most owners have done inDecorating A Vacation Rental - Sadler House their minds, even before they had houses to decorate. I know this from the many people who pin my posts to their boards entitled “Beach House” or “Lake House” or “My Future Vacation Rental.” Planning is a crucial part of the process, if only because it keeps you going when everyone around you tells you that you are nuts.

When the paint colors have been chosen and the house is nearly ready for occupants, it’s important to reevaluate your previous plans and make sure they fit the house you actually bought and the people who are actually going to be viewing your listing. It’s also important to consider tedious practical matters like maintenance.

Never fear! Decorating your vacation home will still be as much fun as you’d hoped. Just keep these five guidelines front and center for a home that will attract your guests as well as delighting you. Read more →

Sadler House September 2, 2015 3 Comments Permalink

Stupendous Seafood Paccheri

I’ll come out and admit it.  I’ve always been intimidated by seafood pastas and stews.

Okay, okay, I’ve made scampi.  But the prospect of a bouillabaisse or a paella or a pasta with various sea creatures on it…well, it just seemed too hard.  I can’t say exactly what made these dishes seem so unattainable, but I am pretty sure it had something to do with the challenge of obtaining three or four different fresh fish or shellfish on the same day in almost embarrassingly small amounts.  Now, this may be a real problem for folks who live in areas lacking good grocery stores, but as a person who has access to the glorious seafood markets in and near Rockland, there’s just no excuse.  So, recently, when Dan and I saw Lidia Bastianich making a mouthwatering seafood pasta on her show, we decided the time had come.

It was imperative we finally make the plunge.  I decided to take on a pasta recipe that contained mussels, clams, scallops AND shrimp.Seafood Paccheri Recipe

Right off, though, we cheated.  Dan and I decided to omit the clams and double the mussels.  The reason for this was two-fold.  First, we have never cared much for clams.  I realize this may get us kicked out of Maine, but we can’t deny that we are just mussels folks.  Second, if you are shopping at a supermarket, mussels come handily in bags of 2lbs., so it can be a great way to simplify your ingredient list and avoid an extra stop at if your time is limited or seafood markets are closed.

If you are not near a great seafood outlet in a coastal area, the other thing we have realized is the usefulness of both frozen raw shrimp and frozen scallops. We have found that sometimes the frozen shrimp is the only practical way for us to shop ahead and plan, so that’s what we had on hand.  The frozen scallops, likewise, have proven to be an affordable way for us to have scallops on hand days or weeks before we need them, when we are not in Rockland and have to make due in Virginia. Read more →