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visiting the beach {and a muffin recipe}

Our trip to the beach was so fun! Before I show you some pics, I’ll set the scene. When you arrive at the New England shoreline, you are met with a few wonderful things and a few annoying things.

Great things: blue sky, breeze, salt air, and other archetypical beach fare.

Annoying things: biting flies (!!!), dead rays washed ashore, and townies.

The first topics need no clarification, just an eye kept on the sand, and lots of bug spray (Note: I am happy to report the natural stuff I buy works on the little suckers). Oh how I wish there was a bug spray for townies. It’s possible I should be calling them something else; I believe the term originally referred to residents of Charlestown and now seems to imply generally obnoxious youth. Think Jersey shore with less fake tan.

These are the people who will ask each other loudly in front of your children (note: trying to type the Boston accent is tough):

Townie A: Do you think Sarah remembehed the xanax?
Townie B: I f***in’ hope so.

Or will say right to their children:

Teenage Mom: I don’t f***in’ cayh if you have to pee, you shoulda gone when I showed you the bathroom, so go in the ocean.


But I’m mostly new enough here that these annoying things are still strange but endearing parts of my foreign landscape. And the good things are really good. It’s been a while (say, forever?) since I’ve gone to a beach in July that had cool enough breezes in the middle of the day that I thought about putting on a shirt. The downside was the weather was so pleasant I forgot to reapply sunscreen to the fam, so we all came home a smidgen redder than I’d like.


At an hour’s drive, you might think we wouldn’t need to pack much in the way of food, but you have to get there so early to get a parking spot that we’ve learned to take breakfast with us. Like breakfast cookies, muffins are great to have on hand for such occasions. Below are the ones I made this week. The ride home is even better because we get to stop off for berries. There’s something really cool about the fact that my kids will grow up eating red currants and black raspberries, two fruits I had never identified until this weekend.image

Muffins pictured with haystacks (a recipe for another day)

banana molasses muffins 
makes 12 muffins

1 c. white whole wheat flour
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 c. brown sugar
3 Tbs. molasses
1/4 c. coconut oil
1 egg
1 Tbs. flax seed meal
3 Tbs. water
1 c. mashed banana (about 2 ripe bananas)
1 tsp. vanilla
pepitas/pumpkin seeds (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degF. Grease 12 muffin tins.

Combine flour through nutmeg in a medium bowl; whisk together. Beat together brown sugar through egg in a large bowl. In another small bowl, combine flax seed meal and water and let sit for 2 minutes (this will act as a binder in the place of a second egg). Add meal/water mix, banana, and vanilla to large bowl. Mix flour into wet ingredients in three increments.

Divvy up to muffin tins. Top with pepitas if desired. Bake for 12-18 minutes, checking frequently after 15 minutes. Cool on a rack for at least 15 minutes.

Note: You can substitute pumpkin for banana, which is the ingredient in the original Ellie Krieger recipe I modified.