Sunday, October 24, 2010

Maine

  Sorry for not posting for awhile!  We've been in Raleigh, NC, relaxing with Peter's parents and being at the NC State Fair!  But we haven't posted about Maine yet, and that place deserves its own entry.




  I think Maine has been the most beautiful place we've visited so far-this might be because we hit the fall color perfectly, or just the overwhelming natural beauty. At any rate, we drove across the state and spent three days in Acadia National Park.  (I know, know-only three days?  We would've stayed longer, but it was just going to rain.  As it was we had great weather!  Besides, Megan had a moment at Acadia where she 'hit the wall' and declared she was ready to be home!)  

   The first day we did a short, hour long hike, called the Beehive Trail.  It was cool-the trail ascends 500 feet along a beautiful cliff of pink granite and firs.  On top, we hiked along the ridgeline, saw the first color of sunset warm the sky, and viewed the Bowl, a natural granite basin the size of a small lake on top an adjacent mountain.  On the hike down we were struck by the pairing of red and orange maples with dark fir evergreens, with gorgeous pink granite in every direction.   

The Bowl
  
   That first night we had our first lobster pound eating experience.  We shared one lobster, a pile of steamed mussels, some corn on the cob, potatoes, and out of this world wild Maine blueberry pie.  


We saw Sand Beach, the only non-rocky section of shoreline on Mt. Desert Isle.  We also spent some time walking along the rockier part of shore, too.



Our other Maine adventures included kayaking Long Lake.  We didn't make out on the ocean (this time) but Long Lake was very pretty and we love kayaking: it's such great exercise for the body and soul.



We had some good local brews at a pub, some fried shrimp and chatted with locals.  Acadia has a scene drive, as well, with great views of the island.  One morning, we got up really early to watch the sunrise on Cadillac Island.  This is the first place sun rays hit the United States for a large part of the year.  BUT...it was cold!!






Gorgeous Maine coast line

Pictures from low tide pools


Harbor in Bar Harbor, Maine


That was about it for Maine.  We left and drove a really, really long ways down to Hampton Virgina to see Megan's Uncle Bill afterwards.  Got some great Chesapeake Bay crab cakes and more fried seafood! Yummy.  

We also visited Megan's cousin Jenny and her great family outside of D.C.  We went into town one afternoon and saw the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum.  Cool, but by that time we were kinda worn out.  It's been nice to relax these last few days in NC.  And, fair food is fabulous.  Yesterday we tried our first Krispy Kreme Burger: a patty with bacon and cheese between two Krispy Kreme donuts.  Delicious.  

We'll be in Missouri in a couple of days, and probably put up some more pictures, and maybe a trip slideshow that goes over the best pictures.  But we'll still blog about cool stuff after that, so keep checking back!

~Peter and Megan




Monday, October 18, 2010

Pictures!



Pictures we couldn't load the last time because the internet was too slow : )

Cheese room at Shelburne Farms.

We love donkeys! They're such cute little fuzzy heads!





These sandwiches were amazing!  Thick slices of local meats with yummy veggies, Vermont apple slices, and Vermont sharp cheddar of course!



The corner of one wing of the dairy barn at Shelburne!



The great Vermont Corn Maze!  It took us about an hour to get through.  I thought it would be harder, but it was still fun!


video

Our trip to the Ben and Jerry's Factory yielded some yummy ice cream!




Stopping by a lake in New Hampshire on "Moose Alley" highway 3.  We didn't see any moose though : (




Happy Fall everybody!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Northbound: Vermont

 Oh, and we also learned New York has the largest state park in the whole country: the Adirondack Mountains!  Weird, huh?


When we first crossed over the border into Vermont, the first thing we did was visit Shelburne Farms.  What a gorgeous place—once, it was owned and operated by a doctor who married into the Vanderbilt Family and wanted to create a working dairy farm Vanderbilt style.  The dairy barn was as nice as a mansion, and there were acres of beautiful woodlands and meadows we walked around.  It is now a non-profit used for agro-tourism, teaching kids and adults about farms, agriculture, cheese making, and animals. Megan got to milk a cow for the first time and got to pet many farm animals she’d never gotten a chance to!



The trails all over the farm were beautiful. We even found a lone apple tree with a few good apples on the ground that ended up as a good snack!

 We had our first taste of Vermont white cheddar at Shelburne, and it was yummy. 

 While color was really pretty in Vermont, we really hit the peak about a half week late, and many leaves were already fallen off the trees.  It made for great hikes though, crunching through leaves is pretty great. That was mostly because it was so darn cold already.  About 35 degrees at night!
     The first night I (Peter) got the car stuck in mud trying to get close to our lean-to shelter we stayed at.  Here’s how it went:
Megan: Don’t drive on that grass, it’s raining and there’s a hill!
Me: Nah, it’s fine.  I’ll just whip around to get it closer.
Megan: We’re close enough.
Me: It’ll be fine.
VRRRRRR.  (Tires squealing) !*#&@&@.

Husbands, listen to your wives. J  The next morning, I was able to get out after working at it for a while.

But the rest of Vermont made up for that unfortunate incident.  We visited Cabot Creamery (cheese, more cheese, and cheese heaven!), Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream (sooo good—we saw many flavors we haven’t tried yet) and beautiful vistas of the Green Mountains and Vermont farmland.  Enjoy the pictures!

We also had a blast at the Great Vermont Corn Maze which we were able to navigate in just under an hour! A nice way to be lost for a while!

A NY Minute

Here are a few thoughts and things we learned about NY State the short while we were there:

1. I always heard Niagara Falls was so romantic but never figured why, but man it really is! :) It felt like a second honeymoon us just walking around hand in hand enjoying the beauty.

2. The taxes, toll charges and gas are way too high! Yikes!
3. NY drivers really drive crazy even when not near a city. We were on a back country road and were being passed like I was going 2 mph (which I was not).
4. Several places offered discounts for paying cash which is nice if you have cash on hand and not travelling so much.
5. The state of New York is so massive, much bigger than I ever thought and we didn't even go to NYC.


   Well that's all, we'd love to come back and do The Big Apple sometime when we can do it right!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Thoughts

Wow. I can't believe how long we have been at this. We are on our 5th week! It seems like forever but then it also seems like we could just keep going on. Nothing like a road trip to bring out some of the best and worst things in people and places, but I knew this would be such a great learning experience from God. Peter and I feel so close, just really best friends experiencing life together. We had such a great experience last night. While winding down from another busy day in Vermont we took a look up in the sky while at our campsite and were blown away by the beauty and brightness of the stars. Being so far out away from towns really makes a huge difference.

We took out our sleeping bags and just sat quietly in reflection and companionable silence for a while . . . and then of course I starting asking questions about stars, planets and thoughts of our trip and Peter being the dear he is obliged me with answers. Camping really is the best way to be: wake up with the light, take things slow, enjoy the simple things like camp fires and good beer, and going to bed when it's dark. Although I enjoy TV, movies, my nice kitchen and cute house and normal conveniences, I'd like to find a way to incorporate the camping type of lifestyle in our lives when we get back home more often. We all should.

When was the last time you enjoyed the stars, a sunrise or sunset, or just drove on a road with no where in mind to go?

I'll add pictures and our great activities we did in Vermont at a later time as I'm tired from all our driving and travels and we're off to Acadia tomorrow for lots of hiking, kayaking, and eating :)

Blessings!

Beautiful stars, obviously not a picture taken by me :)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Picture post

While relaxing in a hotel near Niagara Falls I thought I'd add some picture from the last few weeks.

The amount and cheap price of pumpkins and gourds was so fantastic!


One of the many beautiful rural farms along our American road trip journey.


There was a barn of cattle ready to be auctioned as
well as the horses.

The pleasant clip clop of hooves was such a nice change from the normal hustle and bustle of
city traffic.


Maumee State Park Lake Erie in Ohio.




The gorgeous winery we visited in Pennsylvania.



Stain glass from a really old church on the side of the road in PA.


 We have reached the beautiful Niagara Falls! 
Say Cheese!

This view is across the way into Canada. Oh yeah eh!









A gorgeous rainbow bid us farewell
to this awe inspiring sight.





Some cool seed pod on the beach.








I love taking beautiful pictures and am so very thankful to have this opportunity! I want to take a photography
class really bad because I know there's much for me to learn. Hope you enjoy!