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A Collection of Luxury New England Bed & Breakfasts and Country Inns
It’s Giving Tuesday, a new holiday dedicated to giving back. We give thanks, we give deals, but Giving Tuesday is a holiday dedicated to community organizations, the under-recognized and a chance to give back. It seems like the perfect day to unveil a year-long effort from Distinctive Inns of New England to bring New England getaways to groups of hard-working people that are not often recognized and who can’t often enjoy relaxing getaways.
Over the course of 2014, the Distinctive Inns of New England will honor everyone from clergy to health care professionals to teachers and our military with promotions and offers tied to specific months. Each member of Distinctive Inns of New England will craft their own offer to recognize the theme. Not every member can participate in every promotion, but as you will see, many will honor those people and themes we’ve chosen in most of the promotions.
Here is a preview of the Distinctive Inns of New England’s calendar-based promotions.
January, 2014: Honor the Clergy Month. DINE inns honor members of the clergy throughout January.
March, 2014: Love to eat local? Love a Farmer! March is farmer’s appreciation month among DINE inns.
May, 2014: Nurses/Physicians/Health Care Professionals Appreciation Month (to coincide with National Nurses Week)
June, 2014: Teachers/Professors Appreciation Month, offering respites after a year of teaching.
September, 2014: Fire, Police and Medical First Responders Appreciation Month (to recognize those who responded on 9-11 and to coincide with National First Responders Appreciation Day on Sept. 27).
November, 2014: Military Appreciation Month (to coincide with Veteran’s Day)
December, 2014: Relax during the Holi-daze! (themed packages for the holidays).
Those DINE members able to participate in the January “Honor the Clergy” month have created the following offers. In each case, proof of occupation must be presented in order to take part in any of the following offers, which are offered in January, 2014 only. These offers may not be combined with any other special pricing, promotion, coupon or gift card.
Captain’s House Inn
Throughout January, Captain’s House Inn will offer all members of the clergy a 50-percent discount throughout the month on any length of stay. While here, visit The Church of the Transfiguration, located on beautiful Rock Harbor in Orleans, a contemporary expression of an ancient fourth-century style of architecture. Combining mosaics and frescos, sculpted bronze, stone, and glass, the church is an attraction for worshippers and architecture buffs alike. Tours are offered Monday-Saturday (closed Wednesday) at 11 a.m., 3 p.m., and 4:30 p.m. Be sure to mention “DINE January Clergy Month” when booking your stay in order to receive your discount.
Inn at Harbor Hill Marina:
In celebration of DINE’s “Honor the Clergy Month” the Inn at Harbor Hill Marina says “thank you” to religious leaders who serve all faiths and denominations. Throughout January the Inn at Harbor Hill Marina will offer 20-percent off all gift certificates purchased by or for clergy which can then be used anytime throughout the year. (Example, purchase a $300 Gift Certificate for just $240.). Says innkeeper/co-owner, Dave Labrie, “After the long and most times hectic year-end holiday seasons, we recognize and appreciate the true dedication of our clergy and feel everyone could use a break. What better way to say thank you than giving the gift of time at our beautiful inn to be spent getting much-needed rest and rejuvenation.” While visiting, some clergy may have an interest in visiting St. Edmund’s Retreat on Ender’s Island located in nearby Mystic, CT. With beautiful surroundings and views of Fisher’s Island Sound and beyond, the serenity of Ender’s Island provides an opportunity for prayer, reflection, and rejuvenation. Call 860-739-0331 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and mention the DINE January clergy promotion.
Members of the clergy: before you come, make sure you mention the DINE January Clergy promotion, and champagne (or non-alcoholic bubbly) and chocolate strawberries will be waiting for you upon arrival. This promotion must be mentioned upon booking a January stay, and prior to arrival.
Cliffside Inn has put aside ten gift certificates that when purchased for members of the clergy in January will be offered at 20-percent off. The ten gift certificates can be made in any denomination (no pun intended!), however there are only ten available. If the first person orders ten, then they are gone. Regardless of dollar amount, the purchaser will receive a 20-percent reduction. The gift certificates will be redeemable Sunday through Thursday, are not transferrable (to non-clergy recipients) and must be made out to a member of a recognized religious group that is recognized by the government as a 501.c.3.
Manor on Golden Pond
Feed the soul of the clergy with a “two for the price of one” dinner for any member of the clergy and his or her dinner companion. This dinner promotion is available Sunday thru Friday in January, 2014. Reservations required, and please mention DINE January Clergy promotion when reserving. This offer is limited to one offer per table.
Rabbit Hill Inn
The Rabbit Hill Inn will offer a Clergy Care Package, thanking those who dedicate their lives to serving their congregations. Stay Sunday through Thursday in January 2014 and in addition to the already reduced 20-percent off room rate, members of the clergy will receive a $50 dinner credit for the Rabbit Hill Inn dining room. (Dining room is closed on Wednesdays). The Clergy Care package includes all room categories. Multiple night reservations allowed. Not valid January 19 & 20, 2014. Use Promo Code – CLERGY.
Captain Jefferds Inn
DINE has a new member in Kennebunkport, Maine! You’ll be hearing more about this, but in the meantime, their offer for January Clergy recognition is in honor of their dear friends, Father John and Father Henry Nichols . Relax and unwind with a two for one midweek special. Sunday through Thursday night stay for two nights and pay for only one. Members of the clergy can be active or retired. Please mention January Clergy Month when booking this special offer.
We’ll outline the specifics of each month’s promotion a month prior to each one. Stay tuned to the DINE blog and our DINE newsletters for updates about the promotions. Remember Distinctive Inns of New England as you continue through the holi-daze of December. Your restful and romantic getaway is just a click or a phone call away.
The Buy Local campaign has been gaining momentum throughout the U.S. for years. So stalwart is the American taste for local offerings, national promotions supported by big business like Small Business Saturday and association efforts like DINE at 9 have succeeded in fulfilling the interest in travelers to experience locally owned lodging. And when it comes to accommodations, what could be more authentic than the inns in your travel destination? In New England, Distinctive Inns of New England are the living legends of the buy local scene. On Saturday, November 30, Distinctive Inns of New England will join other small businesses throughout the country to encourage you to shop and stay small on Small Business Saturday.
The Local Way To Stay
While hotels and motel chains may provide a consistent design and brand, they simply don’t vary much from one community to the next. Stay at a holiday Inn or Residence inn, and although they include “inn” in their name, they’re hardly authentic. You’ll find the same lobby and guest room décor and design from one to the next with little attention to the local flavor. And you’ll always find the same kind of person behind the front desk, who may be friendly enough, but certainly not interested. The chain hotels and motels do serve a purpose for those who don’t delight in the element of surprise and authenticity, but do little for those who seek unique experiences. And while AirBnB has taken the travel industry by storm, you just never know what you’ll get and how secure it will be. Click here to see the video.
When traveling throughout New England, choose a DINE member inn and you’ll find a building that tells a local story. You’ll enjoy an inn with historic significance where the owners went to great time and expense to preserve the neighborhood story and add everything from Victorian artifacts to contemporary finishes. One thing that you can be assured of, the Distinctive Inns of New England innkeepers have invested in the community labor force and regional economy to build and preserve the building for a one-of-a-kind accommodation.
According to Forbes.com contributor, John Guiffo, “A big part of travel is that feeling you get when experiencing something completely new, something you haven’t seen or done before”. Walk into any of the Distinctive Inns of New England and John describes the kind of exhilaration you will feel. It’s the discovery of something new and different; not available anywhere else. Each DINE inn offers a sanctuary for authenticity, the preservation of local history, talent and personalized experiences. Most of all, each inn offers a respite where innkeepers live on or near the premises and really care about their guests’ experiences.
The Distinctive Inns of New England innkeepers are dogged in their steadfast commitment to their communities. They provide their guests as many opportunities to buy locally as possible. You’ll find tastings of locally sold candy in your room or beautiful heart-shaped sachets made by hand from ladies in the community. Also trust your innkeeper will provide their well-honed insight into the best deals and meals too. The same holds true for local retailers and attractions, as innkeepers often have insight into how to make the most of the local shopping and entertainment experiences and some have prepared customized itineraries just for their guests. DINE innkeepers pride themselves on providing the kind of local knowledge you simply won’t find at a chain hotel and certainly not at a vacation rental where little or no local insight is provided.
Stay at one of the Distinctive Inns of New England and you’ll be served a complimentary breakfast with eggs, meats, fruits and breads most likely sourced from within 10 miles of the inn, depending on the time of year. Many of the DINE innkeepers grow flowers, herbs and some vegetables right on premise. Walk by the Carriage House at the Deerfield Inn and you’ll find raised beds bearing everything from basil to carrots. And the strawberries you eat at the Captain’s House Inn very likely came from their own gardens too. The Cliffside Inn’s cherry tomatoes are still ripening on the vine and their roses are still in bloom!
Next time it’s time to travel to New England, the Distinctive Inns of New England are simply the better way to stay if you’re dedicated to buying locally. Choose one of these 12 inns and not only will you be treated to unique hospitality from innkeepers who are harbingers of homegrown, but you’ll lower your carbon footprint just a little by buying locally. Every Saturday is Small Business Saturday at DINE inns.
Back in October, we blogged about taking time to notice the good things in life. As we approach Thanksgiving, we like to think about all the things we’re greateful for in DINE country. We’re thankful that our guests enjoy romantic getaways and spa escapes at our inns. We are happy that we can provide culinary vacations for our guests too. This Thanksgiving, all eleven Distinctive Inns of New England join together to express their thanks for the guests that make their livelihood so worthwhile.
When we asked the DINE members to pause and think about what they’re grateful for, some of their answers were a little more surprising than others. We weren’t surprised that many innkeepers mentioned they were grateful for their dedicated staffs. Leslie at the Rabbit Hill Inn was particularly grateful for Donn’s height, as he’s often the one who reaches into high places to hang things. Of course, she’s grateful for everything Donn does, along with her chefs, housekeepers, maintenance staff and of course, her fellow innkeeper, Brian!
The Captain’s House Inn is grateful for their interns whom they say really run the back of the house! And the Cliffside Inn tells us that her Assistant Innkeeper’s creativity is beyond compare!
Ask Judy at the Chesterfield Inn and she’ll tell you how grateful she is for Yoda and Maggie, her two mascot cats. Nancy at the Cliffside Inn will second that and add that life at the inn just couldn’t be the same without Koty, the inn dog, while Jane at Deerfield Inn simply can’t thank Jack, her newest pooch, enough for all his help with marketing.
Jane will add that she’s grateful for the inspiration Deerfield Ted offers both her staff and guests in remembering that the good things in life can come in small packages too.
Dave and Sue at the Inn at Harbor Hill Marina have many things for which they are thankful. One of the little pleasures they thank their lucky stars for is time on their boat, Inn Style. Ask nicely and you just might also be thankful for a ride on that boat, perhaps in better weather!
And Mary Ellen at Manor on Golden Pond, Claudio and Roberta at Camden Maine Stay, Don at the Grafton Inn and Eiran and Michele at Gateways Inn all agreed recently that one of the things they are really thankful for are their fellow DINE innkeepers and their collective sage wisdom and support.
This Thanksgiving, all DINE inns join in wishing their guests a memorable and joyful Thanksgiving and holiday season. We count our blessings and each of our blog readers are among them.
There’s a winter nip in the air. The snow has fallen at one time or another throughout Northern and Southern New England. As temperatures fluctuate at this time of year, there’s nothing better than a good old fashioned bowl of soup.
Stay at the Captain’s House Inn throughout the winter and you’ll be treated to a complimentary steaming bowl of hot soup in the afternoon. Many of the DINE inns including Rabbit Hill Inn, Manor on Golden Pond, Deerfield Inn and Cliffside Inn feature tea and baked goods in the afternoon, while Chesterfield Inn, and Camden Maine Stay Inn, offer afternoon refreshments and the Inn at Harbor Hill Marina stocks a pantry with everything from cider to soft drinks to complimentary beer and wine, plus popcorn, cookies and more to go with it. Stay at a DINE inn and you can be sure you won’t go hungry.
We wanted to share some of the recipes for soups you just might enjoy with your next DINE inn stay.
Pumpkin and Apple Soup from Captain’s House Inn (Serves 6)
2 onions, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tbsp olive oil
500g/1lb 2oz pumpkin, skinned, seeded and cubed
2 baking apples, peeled, cored and chopped
570ml/1 pint vegetables stock
300ml/½ pint dry cider or apple juice
2 sprigs fresh sage
salt and freshly ground pepper
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add the onions and the garlic. Cook for 2 minutes and then add the pumpkin, chopped apples and sage.
- Cook for another 2 minutes, season well and add the stock and the cider or apple juice. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the ingredients are tender.
- Place all cooked vegetables and liquid in a blender or food processor and puree. and serve piping hot with crusty bread.
Curry Carrot Broccoli Soup from Rabbit Hill Inn
1 med onion, medium dice
3 stalks celery, medium dice
3 cloves garlic, minced
5 carrots, medium dice
1 head broccoli, rough chopped
6 Tbls butter
3 qts water
1 qt heavy cream
4 Tbls salt & pepper to taste
4 Tbls curry powder
¼ cup brown sugar
- Boil broccoli until tender; then shock in ice water for greener color. Set aside.
- In a stock pot, sweat onions, carrots, and celery until soft.
- Add garlic and cook for 3 more minutes.
- Add water, bring to a boil, and then reduce to simmer for 10-15 minutes.
- Add broccoli, curry, brown sugar, and salt & pepper.
- Cook for 10 more minutes.
- Puree; then return to stock pot and add heavy cream.
- Stir in puree and allow cream to warm.
- Serve when desired temperature is reached
Whether it’s a bubbling pot of soup or a cozy fireplace in your room, DINE member inns welcome guests to come take the chill off this November. And leave the fuss and muss of Thanksgiving cooking to us too. Whether you choose to stay at a DINE member inn with a restaurant or allow our innkeepers to make reservations outside the inn for you, more and more people are leaving the clean-up behind and heading to distinctive inns at Thanksgiving. We hope you will too.
Twice a year the members of Distinctive Inns of New England gather at one of the 11 New England member inns to discuss the business of creating memorable and romantic escapes and getaways. Each of the member innkeepers are dedicated to making the most of your special romantic getaway, and to insure that your stay is indeed distinctive, all of the DINE inns meet twice a year at one of the member properties. As you might imagine, this is a close-knit group of innkeepers, not only dedicated to delivering a distinctive product but also close friends who enjoy the opportunity to gather, exchange ideas and share stories. Business is the focus, but socializing and networking is also an important outcome of DINE meetings, just as it is at your professional gatherings.
The Distinctive Inns of New England take fun seriously in more ways than one. Your fun is the focus. Their fun is also an outcome of these meetings. We thought it might be fun to share a glimpse of behind-the-scenes at a DINE meeting.
The meeting was hosted at The Cliffside Inn, just steps from Newport, RI’s Cliff Walk and a stroll from all the great restaurants and shops in Newport. Many of the DINE members remembered the last time they came to the Cliffside Inn, prior to Bill and Nancy Bagwill’s purchasing it, gutting it and recreating the fabulous property it is now. We all got the chance to experience the fabulous hospitality and gorgeous surroundings of the Cliffside Inn.
While not a single inch of the inn was not restored and rennovated, the bathrooms are particularly spectacular. Each one features huge beautifully tiled showers, and some have steam showers, jacuzzi tubs and/or fireplaces too. Cliffside Inn photo.
The Cliffside Inn, beautiful inside and out! The firepit is lit every night that weather allows. Cliffside Inn photo.
DINE members gathered in the living room at the Cliffside Inn and got down to business planning a number of exciting promotions for the upcoming months. If you have not yet subscribed to receive DINE newsletters or liked the DINE Facebook page, you will certainly want to do so now. All of the group’s exciting promotions will be detailed in both those locations. Additionally, be sure to visit www.DistinctiveInns.com to learn more about vacation packages and promotions too.
Dine members hard at work.
We even celebrated a birthday during the meeting. A rousing round of “Happy Birthday” was sung to Michele Gazit from the Gateways Inn and Restaurant.
Happy Birthday, Michele!
And we welcomed Erik and Sarah Lindloom from the Captain Jefferd’s Inn in Kennebunkport to our meeting as potential new members. You’ll be hearing more about that fabulous property soon.
Introducing Erik and Sarah Lindblom from the Captain Jefferds Inn, Kennebunkport, ME
Each DINE meeting includes a wonderful dinner, and we had the chance to enjoy Restaurant Week in Newport for this meeting. The whole group enjoyed a fabulous three course specially prepared meal at Malt on Broadway. There was plenty of smiles, kisses and toasting to go around.
Re-charged and ready for another six months of hosting distinctive getaways, stay tuned to the blog, the DINE Facebook page and your DINE newsletters for news of new members, promotions and special offers for our distinctive guests.
Halloween may be one of the biggest candy holidays of the year, but there’s more to this holiday than candy corn and sweet chocolate treats! In fact, one DINE inn is transforming the whole downstairs to a spooky, spider-web filled Halloween Soiree. Meanwhile DINE innkeepers have whipped up some ideas for fun Halloween foods that you can easily make at home for the whole family. If a culinary vacation is not in your Halloween plans, here are some ideas for cute Halloween treats.
Mummy Dogs, Spider Olives and Broom Stick Cheese, oh my!
James Meyer at the Captain’s House Inn created these fun treats for guests and his family. Easy enough to make at home, simply wrap hot dogs in bread dough to create the mummy, add thin spaghetti to olives to create spiders and poke a pretzel stick into cheese sticks cut to look like brooks! Great job, James!
Mummy Dogs created by James at Captain’s House Inn.
Easy Olive Spiders, a Halloween specialty of the Captain’s House Inn.
Witches broomsticks delight Halloween guests of all ages.
Candy Corn Cupcakes from Cliffside Inn
Cliffside Inn’s Candy Corn Cupcakes are easy treats. Simply create a yellow cupcake and frost with the colors of candy corn!
Make your own version of Cliffside Inn’s Candy Corn Cupcakes at home!
Creative Concoctions and Cocktails at Deerfield Inn
Deerfield Inn has some very creative cocktails in store for their Spooktacular Soiree tonight. Look for a potion of orange sugar around the rim of a black rum martini called the Dark Devil or perhaps try the Bloodsucker, a creative drink with raspberry puree dripping like blood down the inside of a bacardi, cointreau and pineapple juice concoction. On the menu, look for such delacasies as Beastly Beans, Guacamoldy, Spooky Spiced Shrimp, Ghastly Goulash with Mashed Boo-tatoes,Morbid French Onion Soup (with Morbier cheese), and Ladies’ Fingers with Slimy, Bloody Ice Cream for dessert. Be sure to come in costume. Here’s what you have to look forward to.
Mashed BOOtatoes garnished with black seseme seeds, broccoli and cauliflower and Balsamic Vinegrette, a creation of the wizards in Champney’s Restaurant & Tavern kitchen at Deerfield Inn.
Morbid French Onion Soup, is actually a delicious appetizer made with tangy Morbier Cheese.
Try the Green Goblin made of Melon-Raspberry Vodka, a dash of Cointreau, a splash of soda and eyeball cherries.
Don’t forget, every visit to any of the 11 BOOtiful Distinctive Inns of New England is a spirited event. Once Halloween has past, we start the countdown to the holidays! Be sure to book your pre-holiday getaway soon.
Photo source: Sundance Vacations.
Vacations, whether they be one night or more are the time to unwind, and finally give yourself permission to relax. While having fun is goal number one, recharging the batteries and rekindling the romance are wonderful side effects of getting away too, no matter how long or short the escape might be. Everyone needs time to regroup and revitalize. The 11 DINE inns each specialize in proving the ideal environment for rest, relaxation and romance. To insure that you make the most of your DINE getaway, here are a few tips on how to prepare for the perfect vacation.
Decide what to bring and what not to bring
Some believe in packing the bare minimum and others bring the vast maximum. Women tend to enjoy having choices of outfits, whereas men will bring a change of skivvies and be happy. Be sure to bring clothing that will be appropriate for your adventure. If you plan some hiking or outdoor adventure, don’t forget a jacket and the right footwear. If all you want to do is sit by the fire, read a good book, and snuggle, then don’t forget the good book. The rest is up to you!
Consider a package
While some travelers want to plan their getaways or simply come with no itinerary, others would prefer to leave the planning to someone else. The Distinctive Inns of New England have created a number of packages offering added value or an itinerary for your escape. From Romance getaways to Culinary Capers and Spa packages, choose your fun and your DINE innkeepers will make all the arrangements.
Plan to Unplug
Your DINE getaway is one of those rare times when you really need to unplug. You’ll start feeling the sense of relief the minute you walk into that distinctive inn’s door. We assure you, you’ll want to unplug. Thus, be sure to leave the number for the inn with those who might need to reach you at home, just to give yourself that sense of security, but plan to turn off the electronics and focus on the two of you. Don’t worry, everything at home will be fine and can wait!
One of the best ways to indulge in a much needed getaway is to pamper your appetite too. Whether you plan to dine at your inn or at a restaurant in town, a highlight of your getaway will be some memorable meals. Every DINE inn serves a sumptuous breakfast to start the day and offers afternoon refreshments, teas or evening receptions. You’ll be well fed, we assure you, so leave the diet at home and enjoy every morsel.
This one’s simple, but surprisingly often forgotten. Have fun during your vacation, and don’t let the little things bring you down. Let go, and enjoy the stars from the porch of the inn and the crackling fire in the hearth. Have a cup of tea or a glass of fine wine, and forget about your work and routine while you’re gone. Most of all, as they say “love the one you’re with”. If you can do this, you will have the best time while reviving, refreshing and rejuvenating.
Ready for your DINE getaway? Simply visit the convenient availability calendar and book online from there. Drive safely on your way to DINE country.
Some say the leaves peaked early in Northern New England, but we in DINE country think they were just about on track. It has been a fall to remember with brilliant foliage that continues to awe our guests. In most of the central and southern parts of New England, peak foliage has yet to come. That means there’s still plenty of time for a romantic New England getaway to any of the 11 Distinctive Inns of New England. After the kind of month we’ve had filled with the stress of government shut downs and impeding government economic defaults, don’t you owe you and your partner the chance to rest easy, romance often and rejuvenate once again? We call these the 3 Rs of DINE and just as you need fuel to feed the body, you need the 3 R’s to revive the heart and soul. Visit the package pages on DistinctiveInns.com for a complete rundown of packages offered by DINE inns. We’ve done the thinking and planning for your next New England getaway, you simply choose the package that sounds the best for you!
Just to get you psyched for your fall getaway, here are some recent photos taken throughout DINE country. Let the picture do the convincing – there’s still plenty of beautiful harvest hues to enjoy in DINE country!
The Grafton Inn is alive in color with oranges, reds and golden yellow leaves adding to the traditional New England history captured here. Visit the Grafton Village Cheese Co. and relax in family and even pet friendly inns or enjoy a romantic getaway in their beautiful rooms and suites.
Come to Deerfield Inn on Halloween and you may need to hug each other not just for romance but to shake of the feeling that someone is watching! This certifiably haunted inn comes alive with a Spooktacular Soiree on Halloween night complete with costumes and themed cocktails and concoctions. Try the creepy Ladies Fingers, the mashed “bootatoes” or a Green Goblin cocktail, sure to lift your spirits! The inn will be filled with cobwebs, spiders and plenty of Halloween hilarity!
Claudio and Roberta Latanza took an afternoon away from the Camden Maine Stay Inn to take a recent ride and capture fall foliage in and around Camden, Maine. Come for your fall getaway and visit Megunticook Lake in Camden then stop by Cellardoor Winery for some winetasting with a view.
Scarecrows are the name of the game at the Inn at Harbor Hill Marina. Here’s a little quiz for you…which of the scarecrows below do you think belongs inside??
Squam Lake is clearly one of the prettiest places in the world during fall, and these photos featured on the Manor on Golden Pond’s Facebook page show how colorful leaves, combined with blue skies and blue water make for a very photographic region!
Finally, mum’s the word on the decor at Chesterfield Inn this fall as the inn and cottages all bear collections of fall colored mums as a welcome at the entry. And Yoda, one of the inn’s personality-filled cats – is all about pumpkins. Here he is posing for his Halloween picture!
Be sure to check the DINE availability calendar, where you’ll find up-to-date information for booking your fall getaway or “ghoulfriends’ getaway” this October! Don’t forget to bring the camera when you come!
Today we are going to depart from our usual vacation-oriented blog postings. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we are focusing our attention on a campaign that is near and dear to one DINE member’s heart. Leslie Mulcahy from the Rabbit Hill Inn has a very personal message to send to all DINE guests. Today, we have posted a guest entry from Leslie on the DINE blog in the hopes that just one – and hopefully more – people will benefit from this information. Thanks to Leslie for sharing her personal story in an effort to help DINE guests…
I’m writing this on Sept 27th, 2013 – a date that I will always remember. One year ago today, I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer. I can still feel Brian holding my hand so tight after the nurse referred to me as a “newly diagnosed cancer patient”. The kicker is that four weeks prior, I got my mammogram report stating that “all was great – come back in one year.” How can this possibly happen??? Well, now it’s time to share my cautionary tale. Anyone who has breasts MUST read this. It won’t take long – you’ll be glad that you did. Please do share this with everyone you know.
Breast Density – It just might be the greatest cancer risk you’ve never heard of
by Leslie Mulcahy, Rabbit Hill Inn
My mammogram failed to reveal two tumors.
After learning that I had dense breast tissue a few years ago, I requested an ultrasound in addition to my routine mammogram. I just wanted a baseline for my record, a reference point for the future. I felt no lumps, no pain, no tenderness, and had a perfect annual mammogram history. I really had no concerns. But, knowing that my mom had breast cancer, I wanted to stay ahead of things. My request was denied; but I did not give up. Luckily, my gynecologist listened to me as I insisted that I wanted a baseline ultrasound due to dense breast tissue. With her help (and some creative thinking), I was able to get a referral for the ultrasound (expecting nothing but normal results, just like my mammo).
Thank God I did! With ultrasound, my doctor detected a suspicious lesion and a biopsy was done. On Sept 27, I received the dreaded news - the biopsy confirmed invasive stage one cancer. But wait, there’s more… additional ultrasound & MRI revealed a SECOND tumor in the same breast. Neither of these tumors were detected on my “perfect” mammogram. Imagine – TWO cancerous tumors were NOT detected on my mammogram due to dense tissue. I was shocked! This is the danger of having dense breast tissue – it camouflages everything.
God then blessed me with the finest surgeons and caregivers at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center. My mastectomy was done on Nov 27, 2012. The final pathology reported two tumors – very small, stage 1, invasive & aggressive estrogen feeding cancer. Because of my EARLY DETECTION, I lucked out big time – all lymph nodes and margin pathology came back negative and NO radiation or chemotherapy was required. My reconstruction surgeries followed a few months later. Every day, I thank God for my incredible husband who cared for me every moment, my absolutely amazing & caring surgeons, and the most loving and prayerful circle of family & friends. Because of them all, one year to the day, and I am 100% fine and cancer -free. I intend to stay that way.
According to my surgeon, had I waited until my next annual mammogram, my cancer would have progressed quickly into an advanced stage and this story would have had a very different ending. I don’t care to imagine what a year’s wait would have meant for my survival!
I am grateful that I was able to achieve an EARLY cancer diagnosis by virtue of the ultrasound I practically begged for. So this is why I share my story — to raise awareness of the danger of dense breast tissue. Hopefully, more lives can be saved when later stage cancers are reduced as women understand the impact of dense breast tissue on delayed diagnosis. Here are few eye opening facts for you (provided by www.areyoudense.org)
Six facts about dense breast tissue
- 40% of women, between the ages of 20 & 65 yrs old have dense breast tissue. That’s a lot!!
- Breast density has NOTHING to do with size. It is, by nature, your genetic tissue. And you CANNOT feel dense tissue. It is not the same as fibrocystic breasts.
- Breast density is one of the strongest predictors of the failure of mammography to detect cancer.
- Mammography misses every other cancer in dense breasts. 40% of women are not getting fully diagnostic screenings with their mammogram.
- Breast density is a well-established predictor of breast cancer risk.
- Breast density is a greater risk factor than having two first degree relatives with breast cancer.
Sadly, the vast majority of women are unaware of the density of their breasts.
- 95% of women do not know their breast density. Do you know?
- Less than one in 10 women learn about their dense breast tissue from their doctors. ASK. ASK. ASK.
I encourage every woman to:
- Be informed. ASK if you have dense tissue. This information is often not commonly shared with the patient.
- If you do have dense tissue, INSIST on getting an ultrasound in addition to mammography (MRI would be even better). Remember, ultrasound is only as good as the technician’s skill (not all are the same).
- Don’t be passive; you are RESPONSIBLE for your own health.
- Please, please, please SHARE this information with every woman you know. It could save a life.
Learn more about this issue and how to protect yourself – go to www.areyoudense.org .
Early detection does saves lives… it saved mine.
It’s been a rough week for most Americans. Whether directly or indirectly, each and every American can’t help but be impacted by the far-reaching effects and implications of the government for the greatest super power unable to agree. We thought it would be a good idea to take a few moments off of worrying about the government shut down and the looming possibility of default, and focus in on the good things we have in DINE Country.
Each of the 11 Distinctive Inns of New England are grateful for the beauty of this time of year and the loyalty of guests to our inns. We wanted to take a few moments to say thank you to all DINE inngoers and remember that we still live in the most beautiful and eminent country in the world. Here’s our top ten list of what we’re grateful for this Friday. Please post on the DINE Facebook page what makes you grateful today.
1. We’re grateful for the incredible beauty of the season and for our guests who capture that and share photos with us.
2. We’re grateful for each person who walks through our doors and honors us with choosing one of the Distinctive Inns of New England for their getaway.
3. We’re grateful for the chance to meet people from throughout our vast world and for each conversation that enriches our lives. It’s why we’re innkeepers.
4. We’re grateful for the chance to own a successful business and work as successful small business men and women offering an authentic and local experience, celebrating our communities and regions.
5. We’re grateful for beautiful surroundings and seasons that never disappoint us with beauty, and which comes back even after the devastation of floods and fires.
6. We’re grateful for a fabulous stretch of blue skies and warm temps, snapping the color to peak in the Northern part of DINE country, and making for perfect days for leaf peeping.
7. We’re grateful to our families; for those who came to us and those who found us, including our pets!
8. We’re grateful for technology that allows our guests to book online and phones that keep us in touch. We’re also grateful for our alarm clocks that insure that we get up in plenty of time to get breakfast on the table!
9. We’re grateful for the tremendous staff, without whom we couldn’t deliver the kind of hospitality we do.
10. We’re grateful for our own good health and yours too, making it possible for all of us to enjoy your visit to our inns!
It’s autumn in DINE country. The leaves are approaching peak color in the northern part of New England and will turn a little later in the Southern parts, giving you plenty of time to book a romantic fall getaway. Simply consult the DINE Availability calendar, choose your destination and your inn, and make your reservation online. We look forward to hearing all the things about your life that make you happy. Be sure to post them to the DINE Facebook page.