the calm after the storm.

“Roads Closed.”


Certain parts of New Hampshire got a much worst bump from the recent Hurricane Irene this past Sunday, but the White Mountains got hit with a pretty good whip lash as well.

The rivers were raging wild and the winds were swirling every which way on Sunday, so we stayed indoors where it was safe (except for one brief excursion to buy a large veggie pizza, which was most definitely an emergency run…obviously.)

But with the sun out the very next day, we wanted to get out.  We wanted to move.  Explore!

The White Mountains closed down the entire forest due to the storm on Sunday, and some of the roads have been severely damaged, which means…obviously…closed roads to specific areas.

But did we let this get us down?  No, of course not.  We still had our walking sneakers.  We still had plenty of gorp.  And we still had plenty of sunshine.


Plenty of opportunities for (safe and) gorgeous trail walks, outside of the closed roads of New Hampshire.

My concern is for the people who live within some of these areas of damaged roads.  Some people are literally stuck until repairs, or at least byways, can be put in.  There are literally roads with big gaps missing in the middle.  It’s crazy!

Looking at the weather though, you’d never guess that a hurricane had torn through just one day before.

The most perfect summer weather with a nip of autumn in the air.  Delicious.

After our nature walkin’, we were all getting hungry, so we headed to Lincoln for the Common Man (our newest favorite restaurant in that area.)

The atmosphere is so quaint, homey and country.

There’s a cheese table when you first walk in, with two soft cheese spreads and a hard cheddar cheese.  It’s a “help yourself” serving station.

The bread is served warm with a whipped, creamy butter.  Which, by the way, I hardly ever use.  Because the bread is also warm and fluffy and perfect all on its own.  Especially the date walnut bread which I still dream about sometimes.  Just sayin’.

Dad ordered the Baby Back Ribs…

Mom ordered the Lobster Mac ‘N Cheese (yes, it was even better than it sounds!!)

Mom let us all take dips into her dish, and it was heavenly.  Much like the experience I had up on the Top of the Hub in Boston, when I first popped a cheese soaked morel mushrooms into my mouth.  Heavenly.

Lobster and mac ‘n cheese.  It’s a win-win.

And then I did what I swear I’ll never do before I inevitably always change my mind.

I ordered the salmon.

Dad makes the best salmon I have ever tasted, so it’s risky business for me to order salmon.  Usually, honestly, I’m sorely disappointed because I’m such a snob when it comes to the type and the way it’s prepared.  This wild caught coho salmon, however, was soft and tender and full of flavor.  Not quite Dad’s salmon but still tasty in its own right. 😉

Dad and I decided to split the Toll House Cookie Pie for dessert, which…well…no words.  Mom kept asking us if it was good, and I couldn’t even speak.  It was like I had been transported away somewhere and I had nothing but hot fudge and ice-cream and white chocolate shavings and walnuts and buttery hot, under-cooked chocolate chip cookies to think about.

I don’t eat desserts all too often, but when I do, I want them rich.

THIS.  Was rich.  Bordering on sinful, actually, with it’s crackly crust and thick hot fudge.  Dad said it should be outlawed…ha.  Delicious.

Thank you, Common Man for yet another deliciously delightful excursion. 😀

I’m typing this on a Tuesday morning with my coffee in hand, tying my sneakers as we speak, waiting for everyone to wake up so Dad and I can head out for a short little (most likely HILLY) run.

I can’t really believe we’ll already be heading home later this morning.  The weekend has just flown by, as vacation days always seem to do.

Sigh.  New Hampshire?  As always…I will miss you.

QUESTION: Did Hurricane Irene effect you where you live?


20 comments on “the calm after the storm.

  1. Holly says:

    I’m in MN so we were not effected at all. Some of the pictures I have seen are just horrible — trees fallen onto houses, roads, etc. Very scary.

    That entire meal looks delicious. Lobster mac and cheese is something I always want to order but I seem to change my mind and not get it. But I would definitely get that cookie pie — sinful was the perfect word to describe it!

    • Sarah says:

      Same here! I’ve never ordered lobster mac ‘n’ cheese, but next time I may just order it as my entree (especially on a cold autumn/winter day.) It was incredibly delicious. 😀

  2. Nicole says:

    First, I must start with a question. How can mom be that tiny and yet always order entrees like cheeseburgers, fries… or mac’n cheese with lobster? Ha, ha!!! Anyway, I’m glad you had fun, your dinner looked delicious, and I can’t wait to see you!! 🙂

  3. Jess says:

    I’m glad you guys weren’t too greatly affected by the storm! Vermont definitely took a beating. Roads closed everywhere, tons of bridges out, tons of flooding…it’s no good. And a dozen towns are stranded because of it. So awful :[

    That slow-shutter water shot is gorgeous!

    • Sarah says:

      I just heard about Vermont and how hard it got hit. That is so scary…it’s amazing how vicious nature can be!

      Hope you and your family are safe!

  4. Becky Sue says:

    Oh, the Common Man has always been a family favorite! Glad you discovered it too! Though, I’ve never had the lobster mac and cheese being a lobster purist and all. The photo looks great. Do I see red leaves?

    • Sarah says:

      The only form of lobster I ever seem to order is in the form of a lobster roll. With just a smidgen of mayo, on a buttered and browned roll. Or just straight up. 😉

      This was definitely something out of the norm for my tastebuds, but was totally delicious. 😀

      Oh, and yes to the red leaves. Crazy, isn’t it?

  5. It skipped my little part of Western Mass, but certain parts were hit kind of hard. Lots of flooding, and our main highway is shut down on one side. Glad you stayed safe!

  6. Karen says:

    I live in in the southeast portion of New Hampshire and we were lucky that we didn’t get the same rainfall that occurred further north. I so happy that you still found beauty in our state and made the most of your trip. Hopefully if you make another trip to New England, Mother Nature will treat you better.

  7. Crissy says:

    Great to see new pics from Sarah. We had a fair share of rain here (my place) in the Philippines, but the northern part of the country was in a state of emergency due to the typhoon. Tc sarah!

  8. BroccoliHut says:

    What a beautiful salmon entree! I must know though–what is that slaw it was served with?? It all looks so delicious!

    • Sarah says:

      So happy you noticed, because honestly, it was one of the best parts! It was a Jicama Slaw with julienned carrots, and it had just the faintest addition of mayo and lemon (and another herb which I cannot for the life of me put my finger on!)

      I’d love to try and recreate it! 😀

  9. Your pictures never cease to impress me! These are rather intense. The weather did not affect where I am too much, but just a few miles to the south they are still dealing with flooding!

  10. Jenn says:

    I’m in Montreal and we got a nasty tropical storm. Tons and tons of rain. Definitely not what we are used to. We obviously didn’t get it as bad as most of the US states but the tropical storm was really out of the ordinary in these parts.

  11. Emily says:

    no, no, no. MY dad makes the best salmon : ) Seriously I totally understand your ordering salmon problem. I do order salmon but I get so upset because my dad’s is SO much better!! But the kicker is that my dad lives half way across the country and I gotta get my fix somehow!

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