Tuesday, August 2, 2022

I Got A New Job! + Teacher Capsule Wardrobe

 Hi everyone! I am very excited about today's post because I am thrilled to finally share that I got a full-time teaching position and will be starting in the fall! While attending college I've always enjoyed blogging, and am am excited to share the new chapter of my life on the blog. I have been blogging for almost 10 years now and have always had so much fun sharing my life will all of you. I can't wait to bring you along on this new chapter and start sharing a lot more workwear / teacher style with you. 

A little background about why I decided to become a teacher. I graduated in 2020 with an undergraduate degree majoring in accounting and marketing with a minor in fashion merchandising. After graduating I planned on blogging full-time but because of the pandemic I wasn't traveling a lot or going to any events which are some of the bigger social components of my job. I have been blogging since I was 14 and always enjoy my time spent blogging- it very rarely feels like work for me. There are so many amazing people I have connected with on my platform and I am so lucky to have all of you here! After graduating and taking one semester to blog full-time, I was introduced to a program in Business and Marketing Education. It seemed like the perfect fit for me by tying in my undergraduate degree and experience to a career in education. I'm very excited to bring my knowledge from my degree and my career as a blogger into the classroom! 

I made the decision to go back to school and am working on completing my masters degree in Business and Marketing Education. Last semester I student taught at two high schools and absolutely loved my experience. Both of my cooperating teachers were incredibly kind and helpful. I was hired in one of the districts where I student taught and will be starting as a middle school BME teacher in the fall! Many teachers have reached out to give me advice and I appreciate it so much- please feel free to comment on this post or message me any advice you have for a first year teacher! 

To start off my new realm of teacher content I thought it would be perfect to create a capsule wardrobe for teachers! The capsule is also great if you need some workwear inspiration in general and are looking to invest in pieces that are versatile. All of the items below are pieces that can be styled so many ways and are great basics in your wardrobe. I also included 10 styled looks below, but the options are endless! I hope you find some inspiration to spice up your work wardrobe! 

Enjoy!

Shop the capsule:

Below I put together 10 outfit combinations with the items above, but with so many great basics the outfit options are endless! All items linked below. 


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Thanks for reading! 

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Memorial Day Maine Trip Recap

 Hi everyone! I just walked in the door from our trip to Maine and am so excited to share more about our trip! Jax and I stayed in Maine for a few days in the fall and couldn't wait to go back. We planned an entire week full of delicious food and incredible experiences. If you are heading to Maine soon this will be the perfect guide for you! After our long drive from Buffalo, all of the spots we went in Maine were within a few hours of one another. Ever since the pandemic I have fallen in love with road trips and find driving to be an amazing way to see a new spot. I also love the flexibility of adding stops and discovering new places. If you are looking for video recaps of our trip be sure to check out my Instagram or TikTok @belleoftheball45!

First stop: Bar Harbor / Southwest Harbor / Acadia National Park 

Where we stayed: 

We found the CUTEST bed and breakfast called the Harbour Cottage Inn in Southwest Harbor that was about 25 minutes from Acadia and Bar Harbor. I loved how quiet and charming the Inn was- it really felt like home. Dora and Daniel were both at the Inn everyday and were so kind. Every morning they served a delicious breakfast made from scratch- I miss it already! There are 11 guest rooms available at the Inn, all of which are clean and cozy. Theres also a bar, beautiful patio, easy parking, and a common space with a fire and board games. Another one of my favorite touches was the homemade snacks and lemonade available in the afternoon- what a treat after a long hike! 

      

After staying at the Harbour Cottage Inn for a few nights, we wanted to do one night in a tent to get the full Acadia experience! We booked a spot in the Blackwoods Campground on the Acadia National Park website and had the perfect night. There were so many families camping too which would be such a fun idea for a family! Our spot was right near the trail for Cadillac Mountain which was very convenient since that was the hike we decided to do on Monday evening. We had a cozy fire and a rainy night in the tent! Something I've learned (and my boyfriend has always reminded me of) when hiking or camping is to always be prepared for rain! Jax has hiked in numerous places such as New Zeland, Vietnam, Arizona, New Hampshire, etc. and is working on a little guest post with some hiking tips. Can't wait to share the post!

    

What we did:

We arrived late on Friday night so we decided to sleep in on Saturday and since it was a little gloomy we spent the day in Bar Harbor. There was a farmers market in town so we shopped the local vendors and stores. After doing some shopping we had a great lunch- I'm sharing a full list of where we ate and drank below! While walking around after lunch we stumbled upon some live music so we stopped to have a drink and enjoy. Another one of my favorite spots we visited was Sherman's which is the oldest bookstore in Maine. Such a neat place!


I was so excited to be back at Acadia especially in the warmer weather! For our first hike we decided to do the Beehive Loop. This is not a very long hike- only about 2 miles and took us about 2 hours. There was definitely a lot of other people hiking this trail which is something to keep in mind! This trail can definitely be intimidating if you are afraid of heights. It has a rocky uneven terrain, it can also be steep in some spots but the iron aides make it a lot easier! Here's a couple photos from the hike:

Shop my hiking outfit:

After our hike we went to Sands Beach and decided to take an impromptu swim which was one of my favorite moments from the trip. The ocean was freezing but so refreshing after a long day hiking. 

We went back to the Inn and cleaned up for lunch at Beals Lobster Pier which was absolutely delicious. Make sure to check my Instagram and TikTok @belleoftheball45- we filmed lobster roll reviews throughout our trip that will all be posted there! 

      

After lunch we went back to the Inn and enjoyed the sunshine for a while. We knew we wanted to see the sunset at Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse so we grabbed a few of my favorite picnic finds and picked up a pizza! It was SO busy at the lighthouse, but we still had a great night. 

Shop my picnic finds:

 

On our last day in Bar Harbor we set up our campsite at the Blackwoods Campground and headed out on a long hike. Cadillac Mountain has incredible views, and it you aren't up for the long hike you can drive up which is a great option. We wanted to drive to the top for the sunrise but we didn't realize we would have to buy tickets in advance. Definitely something to plan in advanced if you want to do this on your trip- you can buy tickets here. This hike was a lot less crowded than Beehive and I would definitely recommend if you're up for a longer hike since this one is 7 miles total. It took us about 4 hours, including some stops to take photos and take in the view.  We ran into a little bit of rain on our way down, but soon after there was a breathtaking rainbow which was one of the most beautiful views I've seen at Acadia. 



Where to eat & drink:

Side Street Café (the best seasonal margs)

Havana (Fresh & incredible dinner)

The Coffee Hound Coffee Co. (the chocolate chip cookie was divine) 

Beals Lobster Pier (Great views and delicious lobster rolls) 

Harbour House Inn (Homemade breakfast every morning for guests)

Jalapeños Cantina & Mexican Grill (loved the casual vibe after our hike)

Little Notch Bakery (only had a dessert but their lunches looked so fresh and flavorful) 

Hearth & Harbor (we tried to order our pizza for the picnic from here but they don't offer take out- everything looked incredible and I would definitely eat here on our next trip) 

    

Photos above are from Havana 

Second stop: Spruce Point Inn / Boothbay Harbor, ME 

Jax and I were SO excited to be back at the Spruce Point Inn, as I previously mentioned we had a wonderful time in the fall and were excited to experience the property in the spring. They also are offering a promo code for my readers which is so exciting- be sure to book your stay at 10% off with code ABBYSPI. A lot of the summer is booked up, but it was incredible in the fall and something to look forward to for next year!  Sharing more about our stay below. 

    

Shop our luggage here:

 
Where we stayed: 

The Spruce Point Inn is a beautiful property in Boothbay Harbor, ME that has been a vacation destination since 1892. There is so much to do including boating, swimming, hiking, biking, dining, fishing, kayaking, and more. It is a wonderful place to bring a family or for a relaxing getaway. They are also pet friendly which is such a plus! They have multiple cottages on the property in addition to rooms at the Inn itself. We have stayed in both and had two great experiences. If you are traveling with a family I think the cottages would be the perfect option. 

   

Shop my dinner look here and use code ABBY15 for 15% off my dress:


What we did:

There is so much to do at the Spruce Point Inn so we spent a lot of time on the property. When we arrived on Tuesday we had lunch at The Salty Stag which was delicious- I got the lobster mac and cheese which was to die for (photo below)! After lunch we headed outside for a drink and to enjoy the views of the harbor. We were craving something sweet and decided to take the bikes available to guests at The Spruce Point Inn and rode into town. We came back to the Inn and watched the sunset- our room had a balcony and a beautiful view of the water. After relaxing for a while, we went to a late dinner at the Thistle Inn which was such a hidden gem. 



In the morning we had breakfast at the Salty Stag- I had been dreaming of the blueberry pancakes since our last trip and they did not disappoint! After breakfast we checked out a few shops in town and went on a complimentary harbor cruise. I love how many water activities are offered by the Spruce Point Inn. During our last stay we boated to a picnic on Burnt Island which was so fun. When we got back from the cruise we went on a little hike since there is a trail right on the property. They also have two pools on the property and even though it wasn't incredibly warm outside the heated pool was a dream. We had so much fun swimming! After our swim we went to dinner and had s'mores at the fire to end the night. 



If you find yourself at The Spruce Point Inn this summer we partnered to create this delicious cocktail- be sure to try it out! 

    

    

In the morning we were up early to head to a place we had heard a lot of great things about- Red's Eats. Martha Stewart has been here and the lobster roll was incredibly delicious- the best I've had in my 23 years. The line can get quite insane (which we learned on our last trip when we didn't schedule enough time to go) so we were prepared this time and were there when they opened at 11:30. The line was forming around 11 so I knew this would be good. Red's is in Wiscasset which is another adorable town in Maine with cute shops and restaurants. A great stop on our way to Portland! 

    

Where to eat & drink:

 

Photos above from The Salty Stag

The Thistle Inn (rumor has it this restaurant is closing soon, but if you make it there before it does you will love it- very cozy)

The Salty Stag ( this is the more causal restaurant on at The Spruce Point Inn and everything we ate for breakfast, lunch, and dinner was very fresh and delicious) 

Downeast Ice Cream Factory (try the blueberry ice cream!)

Red Cup Coffee House (great for breakfast items and coffee) 

Brisetto's Second Cup (Jax loved their coffee) 

Red's Eats (30 mins from The Spruce Point Inn in Wiscasset)

Third Stop: Portland, ME

    

Shop my dinner look here and use code RTRABIGAIL for 40% off your first two months of the 8 item plan on Rent The Runway:


Where we stayed: 

This was a bit of a last minute stop and we ended up scoring a great Air B&B- linked here! It was close to a beautiful park and walking distance to a lot of our favorite spots. I have also stayed at The Canopy in Portland and loved it there. It's very modern and comfortable and the location is unbeatable! I also loved that the hotel provided bikes and many other amenities that made our stay amazing. 

What we did:

We were only in Portland for about 24 hours so we tried to squeeze in as much as possible! When we arrived we did some shopping at some local stores like @ember.maine, @seabags, and @portlanddrygoods. After shopping we checked into our Air B&B and took some time to relax and get some work done. We got ready for dinner and decided to pop into Luna, the rooftop bar at The Canopy hotel. The views from Luna are amazing and it is the perfect place to sit outside and grab a drink. Then we headed to one of my favorite restaurants, Via Vecchia. The atmosphere is incredible and our meals were delicious. Nothing like pasta and a glass of red wine! 

After dinner we went out for a little while, so we decided to sleep in the following morning which was so nice and something we don't do often. We had a late breakfast at the Bayside American Cafe which was incredible and worth the wait. After breakfast we headed to Portland Head Light which is one of my favorite lighthouses that I've seen. We walked around the park for a while and were glad the rain had stopped. Another perfect activity for a rainy day was visiting the Portland Art Museum which was so relaxing and fun. 

Later on we snacked on a few oysters at The Shop before grabbing a quick dinner. We ended up with a pizza from Radici because we had planned on going to High Roller for lobster but (if you can believe it) we were lobstered out. We have so many fun lobster roll reviews coming your way on my Instagram and TikTok so make sure to follow along @belleoftheball45 for those! 



    

Where to eat & drank:

Bayside American Cafe (Delicious breakfast) 

The Shop (Oysters and fun vibe) 

Radici (Woodfired Pizza) 

Via Vecchia (Delicious pasta, cocktails, and make sure you get dessert)

Luna Rooftop Bar (great place to sit outside)

Lukes Lobster Pier (amazing views and delicious lobster)

High Roller Lobster Co. (I've heard a lot of great reviews!)

Duckfat (I haven't been but Jax loved it here) 

Fourth Stop: Kennebunkport, ME

    

Where we stayed: 

We booked our stay a little late so we ended up staying at a cute and affordable Air B&B that was very close to town! They has everything we needed and it was extremely clean. We cooked breakfast every morning and loved having everything we needed there! Linking it here for you. I have visited Kennebunkport before and stayed at this Air B&B in Arundel which was so cozy as well, but definitely a little farther from town and bigger than we needed for the two of us. There are tons of listings for Kennebunkport on Air B&B so be sure to search and find something perfect for your trip! I also just found this glamping experience at Sandy Pines Campground and have added it to my list!!

     

What we did:

Kennebunkport was the last stop on our trip so we definitely relaxed a little more at this stop. We arrived in the evening on Friday and Jax ran to the grocery store to get some items to cook breakfast in the morning and we watched Somethings Gotta Give. In the morning we slept in, cooked breakfast, and headed to town. Our first stop was Snug Harbor Farm which is absolutely beautiful. We shopped around and ended up picking up some succulents to bring home. After Snug Harbor we shopped at a few local boutiques like Daytrip Society and Après Sea Maine. My friends Jackie and PJ also own the cutest vintage shop called Seacraft so be sure to check that out if you're in the area! We had a quick snack and drink at Batson River Distillery which is always amazing. For dinner we had our final lobster roll of the trip at The Clam Shack! We went back to our Air B&B and watched a movie since we had to be up early for our drive home. 

     


   

Where to eat & drink:

Batson River Distillery (lots of outdoor seating)

The Clam Shack (when they ask mayo or butter say both!) 

Arundel Wharf 

Earth at Hidden Pond 

Old Vines Wine Bar 

Kennebunk Coffee Roasters 

   

I hope you were able to find some spots to visit on your next trip and enjoyed the post! Feel free to comment or DM me on Instagram @belleoftheball45 with any questions. Thanks for reading!

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