This has been one rainy summer in New England! But yesterday the sun shone brightly and temps rose into the 80's, making it the perfect day for a trip to the beach. My favorite spot by the sea is Reid State Park, so I headed up there and enjoyed 4 fabulous hours wading through the waves, reading in the sun, and listening to the children splashing and laughing all around me. My photos from yesterday did not turn out very well, so I went into my picture files and found these images so you could share some of the tremendous beauty of this special place. (Click on each photo for a better view.) I've been going to Reid all my life, and it never ceases to delight me! I feel very lucky to be living close to such an ideal place. Hope wherever you are, you're enjoying some relaxing time this season!
When I first moved to Maine from NYC, I was struck by how many vanity plates I saw while driving. There seemed to be more cars here with vanity plates than I ever saw while driving the Long Island Expressway. As it turns out, Maine ranks sixth in the nation when it comes to the percentage of motor vehicles with vanity plates, and New York is not even in the top 10. This spring and early summer, I was driving about 70 miles per day to and from work, and so I began to really notice what people had chosen for their license plates. I'm now keeping a list and have decided to share with you a few of the vanity plates I've seen on the roads here in Maine. I don't have a vanity plate myself. Do you have one? If not, what would yours say? I used to want WORDZ (because I'm a writer), but now I think I'd choose something else. Maybe something about Maine, like the one I saw recently, LUV207. (207 is the state's area code.) Or perhaps something about the ocean, since I'm nuts about the coast. Maybe COASTIN or GO2SEA. Anyway, here is a list of some of the vanity plates I've seen.
AYUP TRUBLUE EN ROUTE DEAD [as in Grateful?] NRTH STR SHW BYZ C SPRAY DIGGIT GOIN UP MYETOY LTSGO I NO Y WAKUP ENUNCI8 JUNGLIST LOBSTA PIGSFLY BEACHBM XRAYVZN WEBAD9 URLUVD P-COCK WLF MN SQWASH NJOYLFE WCKDGD LFEISGD DEJA VU SKIR IBELIVE GR8GOAL OWLMOON BUH BY
(Please click on photos for a bigger view.) I asked my good friend Silke at Metamorphosis to help me with this posting. I was inspired by Neville at Sainte Verde Digest to try pairing photos -- one of Silke's with one of mine. (Hers are on the left, and mine are on the right.) Pairing photos is harder than it looks! Neville makes it look so easy. He has an amazing eye. I don't know that I have his talent for design, but I had a ball doing this. In fact, it is kind of addictive, so you will probably be seeing lots more photo pairs.
I'm doing an experiment here... I'm playing around with pairing up photos after being inspired by Neville at Saint Verde Digest. He has such an amazing eye! I can tell already that I've been too literal, pairing a book about NYC with a photo of Manhattan, but that's OK. I learn by doing! I am going to go ahead and publish this post. Expect to see more of this sort of thing in future. (And hopefully, I'll be able to figure out how to get rid of the big space above the photos.)
New York: The Wonder City, 1939
Empire State Building, 2007
For those who are wondering, the booklet above was published by Interborough News Co. for The Merchants' Association of New York. There is a great letter on the inside front cover. Here is an excerpt:
"We like visitors because the presence here of people from other places helps bring about a better mutual understanding. New York is essentially a friendly, home-loving City. Our deep aspirations are your aspirations -- for peace, opportunity and good will."
I can't remember if I picked up this booklet at the 26th St. flea market when I lived in NY, or if it was given to me by my dad (antique dealer extraordinaire). In any case, I really like it and currently have it displayed on a side table in my living room.
I posted recently about the eagles I've seen this summer. I'm happy to report that a recent newsletter from the Natural Resources Council of Maine says that there are now nearly 500 nesting pairs of bald eagles in Maine, the highest number of any state in the continental US. Bald eagles have now been take off Maine's endangered species list. Looks like I will have plenty more chances to see magnificent eagles in the pine tree state!
Last Friday after my cousin Jon and his family visited, I blogged about our excursion to Midcoast Maine, where we visited the Maine Maritime Museum and Reid State Park. While walking the museum grounds, I spotted this little building. I'm not sure what it was used for, but I love the shabby curtains! I don't know if you can tell, but they are very tattered. I said to my cousin's sister-in-law that I needed to stop and snap some pictures of it, because it is perfect for Funky Friday. Later, at Reid State Park, Jon remarked on the lichen that grows on the rocks there. I looked back through my photos today and found this image that shows one such rock. I've always loved the rich mustard color against the granite-gray rocks. In your travels this weekend, don't forget to keep an eye out for the unusual! A little weirness keeps life interesting.
My friend Rita just turned me on to a cool site, wordle.net, and I linked my blog to it to create a word collage. Pretty groovy! Check it out: title="Wordle: Mainely Words"> src="http://www.wordle.net/thumb/wrdl/999739/Mainely_Words" alt="Wordle: Mainely Words" style="padding:4px;border:1px solid #ddd">
It's been quite a week for eagle sightings! In the last 6 days, I've seen 2 eagles' nests and 3 eagles.
The first nest is located along Route 1 in West Bath, and I've noticed it before as I've headed up the Coast to Reid State Park. Last Thursday, I decided it was time to stop and take some photos, and the results are posted here. The following day, I was traveling with my relatives to Reid once again, and this time we spotted a nest as we were driving down Route 127 in Georgetown. And then yesterday, as I was headed north on I-95 to Lewiston, I spotted an eagle in a tree along the highway.
From what I've read online, I believe that these were all bald eagles, which are considered a threatened species. I also read here that the breeding population of bald eagles in Maine has risen from a low of only 21 nesting pairs in 1967 to 412 nesting pairs in 2006. Therefore, since they are growing in number by about 8% each year, they are likely to be taken off the threatened species list.
Yesterday my cousin Jon and his family took me to the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath. I'd like to share with you some photos of the day. Don't forget to click on the pictures if you'd like to see a larger view.
As they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Although some would see it as an eyesore, I love this little ramshackle building. In fact, I think it's adorable! I don't know if you can tell, but there is a cute little bird feeder attached to the front and a horse shoe over the door.
But when I stopped to take these photos in June, a woman came out and told me that the shack was going to be burned down. I haven't been back to see if it's happened yet. I guess I'd really rather not know. I like to remember this funky shed just as it was, with all of its ramshackle charm!
My good friend Silke of Metamorphosis has given me an award. She says it's because I inspire her -- well, the truth is, we inspire and support each other. Thank you, Silke, for this recognition. Your friendship is the best gift of all!
I'd also like to take a moment to share a photo (above) that I took last night in downtown Portland (Maine) of geraniums on a doorstep, all dressed up for the Fourth, and to wish everyone a happy holiday weekend!
I went to Portland to view the Call of the Coast exhibit at the Portland Museum of Art. I always find it so inspiring and uplifting to see great works of art, such as those by Edward Hopper, Childe Hassam, and Rockwell Kent, among others. I was not able to take any photos of the exhibit, but I did snap one outside the museum. It is a view of the museum garden, which contains this unusual piece of art crafted of wire and filled with stones. (Sorry, I don't know the name of the piece or the artist.) Beyond, you can see some of the American Neoclassical Sculpture exhibit through the window.
Last Saturday, my friend Julie and I traveled to Western Maine in search of my roots. OK, not in search of them, exactly. It was more like a trip down memory lane for me and a chance for Julie to see where I come from. My father's family is from the Fryeburg area, and there is a farmhouse and 2 summer cabins there that used to be in my family. We took our time driving around, with me pointing out the highpoints. We also went up into Evans Notch, part of the White Mountain National Forest that overlaps the Maine-New Hampshire border.
[This is Julie at the Cold River Overlook in Evans Notch]
Although we had a gray and rainy June, Julie and I were treated to some sunshine and big puffy clouds as we made our way around the beautiful backroads of Maine and New Hampshire.
We also glimpsed some wonderful wildlife, including a beautiful deer dashing into the woods at the side of the road and a family of wild turkeys. Neither of us had ever seen baby wild turkeys before -- they were really quite a sight! Once we got up into the mountains, we seemed to see butterflies everywhere we went. I wish I had photos of these special animals and insects, but they were all too quick for me to capture with my camera. [The ferns are huge now, due to all the rain we've had.]
Driving from Stow to Chatham, we came across the remains of a yard sale outside the lovely Hidden Meadow Farm. Among the odd's and end's marked free were these two items: a vintage bread box that someone had repainted and a shabby wooden chair. I scooped both of them up. I have a project in mind for the chair. The bread box I may try to decoupage, or it may end up being donated to Goodwill. We'll see. I'll undoubtedly have more photos of Western Maine for you later in the summer... It's one of the areas of Maine that will never stop calling me home.
I'm participating in French Lique's Wordless Wednesday. This week's theme is red, white, and blue - so appropriate for our upcoming Independence Day celebrations! I wish you all a wonderful weekend. Don't forget to take time to appreciate the freedom that we Americans enjoy.
[I took this photo outside Pennsylvania Station in NYC]
Beth is a creative Mainer, constant dreamer, retired writer, passionate beader, positive thinker, and cancer survivor. "I am a woman who feels blessed to live in the great state of Maine. I enjoy being creative in many ways: making bracelets, taking pictures, creating unique greeting cards, making monoprints, and much more."