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      Celebrating Acadia

      Celebrating Acadia

      It’s the 100th anniversary of Acadia National Park and this is something to celebrate.   One hundred years ago, the deeds to the land that is now Acadia were given to President Woodrow Wilson.   Like all our parks, Acadia has an interesting history, and Acadia is our only national park to begin with donations from individual families donating parcels of land.  The island of Mt Desert was populated by wealthy landowners who summered in “cottages”.  These cottages were large mansions with plenty of room for family, guests and servants.  These summer visitors were know as “summercators” or “rusticators”.  Most of the original families have last names Americans are familiar with including Rockefeller, Morgan, Ford and Vanderbilt.

      Celebrating Acadia National Park

      Living near a national park is a combination of joy, wonder and frustration.  I talked with Carly on the phone yesterday and she planned on making shampoo bars except she was out of rubber gloves.  She’d spent the day before buying groceries in Bar Harbor and parking was such an issue she couldn’t go back.  The last time I drove thru Bar Harbor I was struck by the beauty of the mountains in the distance and then freaked about cars and people.  That’s the frustrating bit about living in a totally breathtaking place.

      And then there is the beauty.  Most people think of Maine as summer, beaches, lobsters and blueberries.  Maine is stunning during the short but oh so sweet summer months.  But Maine, and Acadia is beautiful all year round.  In fact, I enjoy fall the best.  Summer is such a busy season and you are always figuring out alternative routes and stressing about parking.  How much extra time do you need to allow to catch your boat?  You can never get that question answered correctly.

      Something happens in the fall with the light.  Out on Gotts Island the days become magical in September and sunny October days.  Perhaps it’s the shortness and the crisp wind but wandering the roads, lobster boats in the horizon is one of my life’s simple pleasures.

      Acadia National Park is 100

      At Dulse and Rugosa, this island beauty, our sense of wonder and joy of place is reflected in our products.  When you open a jar of Dulse & Rugosa you are transported to a summer day in Maine.

      Our Maine Island Home

      Our Maine Island Home

      Dulse & Rugosa is a mother and daughter business with our feet firmly planted on a small Maine island.   In fact, Carly was just about born on remote Gotts Island thirty years ago.  Back in those days- this is before cell phones and internet our only way of communicating was a CB radio with a link to the Camden Marine Operator.   Gotts is one of the super remote islands with no ferry, real cars (by that I mean inspected regularly) and no electricity except from the sun.  So, when it was near Carly's due date, we thought about the tides a lot!  In my experience, it is always low tide out on Gotts when you really need to get off.

      Maine island life has many challenges including the tide.

      We'd already decided on Carly's name- I knew she would be a girl.  She is named after our dear island neighbor, Carl.  When my contractions started we knew it was time to get off.  Wondering about the tide?  Low of course.  This meant we had to go around another island which was an extra 20 minutes.  We left at dawn and the sky was brilliant- one of the rare occasion I've seen the Aurora Borealis. The thought went through my mind to name her Aurora but she has always, even in my tummy been Carly.

      We had a few more adventures on the way to the midwife including our car overheating and needing to call for a tow.  We started at dawn but Carly wasn't born until six that evening.  I guess she wanted to wait until all the chaos had settled.  The next day, we headed back to the island.  Of course, it was low tide again and we had to land on an awkward beach.  A kind neighbor gave us a ride up the hill in his WWll jeep.

      Because Carly spent her early years roaming the fields, forest and shores of the island she has a deep love of place.  Dulse and Rugosa started with this love of place.

      Dulse & Rugosa is firmly rooted in Maine.

      Our mission reflects the experiences and joys of Maine island living.

      At Dulse & Rugosa our mission is to bring you nourishing and effective skincare made with botanicals harvested from our Maine island home.  From our farm, our island shores and the sea we gather hardy Maine plants with benefits to your skin, hair and scalp.  Our botanicals include four varieties of Maine seaweeds, hand harvested from our mineral rich waters.  Dulse & Rugosa, nourishing body and soul.

      Drinking with Seaweed- An Umami Adventure

      Drinking with Seaweed- An Umami Adventure

      If you are looking to add a bit of fun and adventure into your next happy hour- try seaweed.  Seaweed is gaining popularity in all sorts of dishes mainly for it's high nutritional content and earthy umami flavor but seaweed can also be found in alcohol.

      I heard about Marshall Wharf's seaweed beer a few years ago and got very excited-  the idea of seaweed and beer!  Honestly, I'm not a big beer drink but their Sea Belt Scotch Ale is yummy.  It's a dark beer with some lovely ocean notes.


      Have a umami happy hour with Maine seaweed.

      Whiskey is another way to try seaweed.  Celp from Scotland has a piece of seaweed floating in the bottle.  It's the Scottish version of a good tequila.  

      And how about changing your Bloody Mary to  an Ocean Mary by adding a rim of seaweed flakes around the glass.  Seaweed salt is easy to make- mix equal parts of your favorite seaweed flakes with a nice sea salt.  For a spicy, slightly celery mix add a bit of Old Bay Seasoning.

      Mix equal parts salt and Maine seaweed flakes for a wicked Bloody Mary


      To get your happy hour and the weekend started right- join our Plastic Free Friday Giveaway on FaceBook


      Plastic Free friday Giveaways

      Use Good Soap- It's Good for You and the Environment

      Use Good Soap- It's Good for You and the Environment

      .Hand crafted soap is good for your body and the environment. 

      I've been using handcrafted soap for years.  I still remember my first bar, Carly gave as a gift.  It was so magical especially as I used a commercial bar full of chemicals.

      Here's a list of ingredients found in my commercial soap-

      Sodium Lauroyl Isethionate, Stearic Acid, Sodium Tallowate or Sodium Palmitate, Lauric Acid, Sodium Isethionate, Water, Sodium Stearate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Cocoate or Sodium Palm Kernelate, Sodium Chloride,Tetrasodium EDTA, Tetrasodium Etidronate, Maltol, Titanium Dioxide

      But to my surprise the ingredients are only part of the problem.  I was surprised and saddened by the amount of plastic packaging found in the soap aisle of my local grocery store.  First, liquid soaps have taken over from bar soaps.  There may be times when liquid makes practical sense but it's not good for our environment.  Bottle after bottle of plastic to keep us clean while our world gets more polluted.

      Liquid soaps have taken over from the traditional bars of soap and this means a lot more plastic.

      Even bar soaps packaged in cardboard boxes were wrapped in plastic.  It's really tough to reduce your plastic consumption and one easy way is to use a hand crafted, low packaged bar of soap.

      Commercial soaps are packaged in plastic, hand crafted soaps tend to use minimal packaging. 

      Rose Season in Maine

      Rose Season in Maine

      The roses are starting to bloom on the mainland.  They will be a little later out on Gotts Island and this is always such a sweet time of year.

      Rose petal rich, skin loving Dulse & Rugosa products.

      At  Dulse & Rugosa we use some form of rose in just about every product we make, but some products are especially rich in Maine roses.  The roses we use are the Rugosa Rose.  While not native to Maine and perhaps like the beloved lupine considered invasive, the "beach rose" is part of the seashore in Maine. Starting with the scented petals of deep pink and white by fall the rose hips provide much needed Vitamin C for anyone facing a Maine winter.  Rose hips are nutritious and delicious in teas and jams.

      Essential oils and rose petals to help whisk tension away.

      One major benefit of roses is their scent.  It is such a natural, sweet but not cloying scent and no matter the weather evokes a sunny day by the ocean.  Carly has created a rose petal rich roll on perfume oil designed to help calm and relieve tension.  The base is Calendula infused sweet almond oil enriched with lavender and peppermint essential oils and sweetened with rose and chamomile petals.  One of the benefits of being "skincare chefs" is mixing up wholesome goodies for your skin.  Headache oil is aromatherapy for you, not the room. 

      Our Island Face Scrub is also rich in handpicked Maine island roses. Our gentle face scrub is beneficial to all skin types but especially helpful for breakouts. Roses have an anti-bacterial property that can help calm irritated skin.  When you combine the power of rose petals with the magic of Maine seaweeds you have a gentle yet effective combination of natural ingredients to keep your face clear and happy.  Natural ingredients are a more effective and safer way to fight pimples then using weird chemical that have the potential to be harmful.

      Another way we utilize the benefits of rose petals in in our Rose Witch Hazel.  This is an infusion of rose petals into witch hazel and the results are divine with a heavenly scent.  Witch hazel is another wonderful product for acne prone skin.  Try our Rose Petal Witch Hazel to spot treat an annoying pimple, as a face toner after a hot, sticky day or dab on irritated skin.  

      Our Rose Petal Witch Hazel is the base for our Rose Petal Creme which is a great creme for faces that need a bit of moisture but not too much.  It's light, creamy with a dreamy rose scent.  

      Treat yourself and your skin to the gift of rose petals.

       Bees are loving sweet Maine roses.

      As always, we want to thank you for supporting our small business.  Reading our blog, following us on social media and especially purchasing our products keeps our small business in business.