Monday, June 30, 2014

Maine: Part 2 - Lob-stah Day

Our first full day in Bar Harbor was welcomed with sunshine before 5 am. That's right, light streamed through our bedroom window very early. When I woke up and looked at my clock, I thought the time was wrong. It said 4:47, and I couldn't believe there was already so much light!

We went into Ellsworth (the mainland) in the morning. We dropped off Adam and Julie at church and grabbed some breakfast at Dunkin Donuts and got some supplies at Walmart. Side note: Dunkin Donuts really could have been the sponsor of our trip. It was the very first stop we made at 3:30 am on our drive up. I made the mistake of pronouncing it a little weird, which became the way the rest of them said it for the entire week. On our trip we learned that Dunkin Donuts is extremely popular in New England. It's all over the place, around every corner. Crazy! We had searched for it a few times, and every so often, Bronson would get a reminder on his phone telling him how far it was to the closest dunkin donuts.

After returning to our rental house, Adam's parents came over and cooked up a lobster lunch. Except we don't call it lobster. We call it "Lob-stah." We got to learn how they were cooked, and we also got to learn how to pick them. 
I had a hard time picking it and eating it. However, I picked one just to pick it, and had no problem cleaning it out. It was the act of putting it in my mouth after picking it that made me queasy. Despite the gross moments, it was so much fun to learn something new and to have had this experience. Thanks Mr. and Mrs. Bien!

After lunch we lounged around (my all time favorite vacation activity). In the evening we ventured to the town square where they had advertised a steel drum band. I was picturing a few guys drumming. In fact: there were about 20 of them. Not at all what I had imagined.

After listing to them for a bit, we walked along the shore path, picked up some neat rocks, and had fun taking pictures with huge rocks.

We ate dinner at a fun restaurant. We sat in a booth that had license plates around it. We sat by the one that was from Stark County, Ohio which is the county right above the one we live in! This night was the first night we got ice cream. I'm pretty sure ice cream became the nightly ritual. It was as if you couldn't go to bed without it. None of our waists are the same after this trip. :/
After dinner, Andrew fell asleep way early. Sarah and I started working on a puzzle (one of three we completed that week). Adam, Julie, and Bronson watched tv until one by one they started fading and heading to bed. Vacation at it's finest, people.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Maine, Part 1: The drive up.

Andrew and I took our first vacation without Cooper this month. We decided to go all out and be away from our little boy for 8 days/9 nights. It was fantastic and rejuvenating. I can't remember the last time I felt so relaxed.

We went with 2 other couples: Bronson and Sarah, and Adam and Julie. The car ride was actually a lot of fun!

On our way up, we spend the night outside of Boston, but not without making a quick trip into the city for dinner. I quickly fell in love with Boston. It's age, it's beauty, it's charm. Just a few minutes into the city I knew we would, indeed, be visiting Boston again.

We passed this building so many times. It reminded me of the scene from European Vacation..."look kids, Big Ben, Parliament."

One of Andrew's favorite t-shirt companies, Johnny Cupcakes, is in Boston. For father's day he got a trip to the store and a t-shirt from them. When I learned it wasn't really a cupcake store, I was pretty bummed, too. But they play up the cupcake/bakery thing. They display their t-shirts in big freezers and bakery cabinets.

That night we found a very local pub where we could eat, named Barracuda Tavern. Everyone but Adam had fish and chips. Yum-O.

The second day of our drive was about a 5 hour trip, but we quickly turned that into a 12 hour trip from all our fun stops.
On the road again...

They do things fancy in New England.

First we stopped in Freeport at the LL Bean retail store...the only one there is. There were a whole bunch of outlet stores that we walked around as well. I got some delicious donuts from a local shop named Frosty's, which we all enjoyed during our continued ride.

From Freeport to Bar Harbor we drove along the coast, stopping in a couple of neat towns.

We stopped at a town where they build ships. It was pretty neat to see a little bit of how they are built, as well as see how big they really are. We found this nice little spot to visit and take a few photos. There were so many dogs there. On our way out we realized it was a dog park.

We stopped at another quaint town, where we got to see some boats docked, a nice waterfall, and a beautiful library.

Our last stop before Bar Harbor was Fort Knox. We got to walk around learn about the unique features of the fort. It was really neat to imagine all the fighting that went on and how cool and also terrifying it would have been.

Sarah and Andrew pretending to give orders. 

Bunk Buddies

Cartwheels is what you do in forts.

On our way out we read that this fort actually saw zero fighting. Go figure. It was manned during times of war, though. I guess no one wanted to do battle in Maine.

We rolled into Bar Harbor around sunset. Adam (who is from Maine) took us up to Cadillac Mountain, where we got to see the sunset. It was beautiful. It made me so excited to be in Maine for the week.

We looked for moose the entire week. Andrew even perfected his moose call (see video below). Sadly, this was the only moose we saw.

We finally rolled into our rental house, which *hooray* was right in the middle of the town.  Once inside there was some drama over the beds, and the boys all ended up together like this after one of the bed frames broke.

It was so nice to finally be in Maine and settling down for a great week.