The Beauty Around Us

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Posts from the ‘New Hampshire’ category

Our Thanksgiving Holiday – The Last 3 Days

We spent Thanksgiving Day and two days afterward in New Hampshire. The activities of our first three days of our Thanksgiving holiday are provided here.

On Saturday (November 27th) the only plans we had for the day were to meet up with a blogging friend and her husband, to go shopping at the Merrimack Premium Outlets and to pack in preparation for our drive back home the next day.

We met Dorothy and Patrick at the 99 Restaurant, located on our hotel grounds, at 11:30 am.  Dorothy and I are blogging friends.  We have been blogging friends for at least 8 years.  This was the first time we met in person.  Dorothy’s blog is called “The Frog and PenguINN”.   Our visit lasted about 2 hours. Our lunch choices were delicious.  Conversation flowed naturally and pretty much non stop.  I am happy that we met and hope that the opportunity presents itself to meet again.

Dorothy and Patrick
Dorothy and me
(photo by Patrick)
The four of us

After lunch we went our separate ways.  Bob and I went to the Merrimack Premium Outlets

Bob and I at the Merrimack Premium Outlets
This is the only moose we saw, while in NH.

Merrimack Premium Outlets was hopping; people everywhere!  Most people carried at least one bag; many people carried several bags. It was a good shopping day for the outlet stores! We found what we were looking for, and we got some exercise.  We have been doing way too much sitting since Wednesday morning.

[NOTE: When we returned home, we discovered that Bob’s purchases at Merrimack Premium Outlets turned out not to be what Bob thought he purchased.  The PJ set was a woman’s PJ set, not a man’s set.  The PJ set is too big for me. We offered the PJ set to someone in our local Facebook Helping Hands group, who is gathering Christmas items for those in need.  The two Under Armour shirts are short sleeves, not long sleeves.  Bob will keep the shirts. I helped Bob with both of these selections. I guess, after 20 months of avoiding shopping in stores, we are not good at in-store shopping any more!]

We returned to the hotel around 3:15 pm, where we stayed for rest of the afternoon / evening.

On Sunday we started our drive back home.  We checked out of the hotel.  Then, we ate a filling breakfast at a Denny’s Restaurant near our hotel. 

Breakfast at Denny’s Restaurant

This breakfast was the best since arriving in NH. 

Shortly after 8:00 am we were on our way back home.  When we left Nashua, the sky was partly sunny. It wasn’t long, though, until the sky became overcast. On our way to NH we didn’t see any snow.  On our way home, we saw snow on the ground in NH (not far from Nashua); Wilmington, Woodford and Bennington VT; Hoosick NY to Albany NY (very little in Albany; snow flurries falling there but short lived). There was much more traffic on our way home than there was on way to NH!

As we did on our way to New Hampshire, we made a stop at the Hogback Mountain Overlook.

Hogback Mountain Overlook
(Marlboro, VT)
This building is located below the Hogback Mountain Overlook platform.

Here are a few snowy scenes, while driving on the Molly Stark Trail (Route 9).

Woodford VT
Woodford VT

and my favorite …

Woodford Hollow Church
Woodford, VT

The snow returned in Duanesburg NY, where we turned onto I-88. Snow stayed with us from Duanesburg to Owego.  Thankfully the roads were clear of snow for the most part.

We arrived at Best Western Oswego Inn around 2:40 pm and checked into room 108.  This hotel used to be a Holiday Inn Express.  I don’t know when it changed hands.  Our hotel room is spacious.  Its furnishings include two double beds, a chest of drawers with a tv sitting on top of it, desk and chair, two end tables and a kitchenette complete with refrigerator, microwave, two burner stove, Keurig Coffee Maker, a sink and cupboard/drawer storage.  We paid for this room by using reward points.

On Monday we checked out of our hotel and ate breakfast at a nearby Dunkin’ Donuts. We were on our way home by 7:45 am. At that time the sky was overcast; the temperature was 31 degrees; and the trees were lightly frosted.  There was a light dusting of snow on the ground.  The road surface was wet, not icy.

We encountered occasional snow showers most of the way home.  The ground was snow covered along I-86 in the Finger Lakes area (NY); tree branches were snow covered.  The most snow we saw was in Jamestown NY, where there was easily a foot of snow on the ground.  

Before returning home we stopped at Shults Auto in Jamestown to pick up spark plugs that Bob ordered online on Black Friday.  He saved 20% on his purchase. Now, he needs an ”Indian Summer” type of day to install the spark plugs.

We returned home at 11:30 am.  Much less snow was on the ground in Warren than in Jamestown.  There might have been 3 inches of snow on the ground at our house.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with family and friends. It is always good to be back home, though.

Our Thanksgiving Holiday – First 3 Days

We spent Thanksgiving Day and two days afterward in New Hampshire.

We drove from our home in Warren PA to Bennington VT on Wednesday. We left Warren at 7:20 am. It was a gorgeous, but frigid, morning.  The temperature was 18 degrees, when we left home.  

After making a few stops (for fuel, breakfast, stretching and bathroom), we arrived in Bennington VT shortly before 3:00 pm.  Our drive there was smooth sailing all the way.  The weather continued to be gorgeous; the traffic wasn’t bad; and the temperature got warmer.  When we arrived in Bennington, the temperature was 36 degrees. 

We checked into the Best Western Bennington, room 172.  Our hotel room was spacious, with access to an outside deck. 

Our hotel room

The room looks nice on the surface.  If you look closely, though, you will notice a moderate amount of wear and tear.  The room was clean and appeared to have been recently painted.  The refrigerator was turned off, and wouldn’t turn on.  We assumed it was plugged in, but there wasn’t a way to check this as the refrigerator was bolted in place.  We didn’t have anything with us that had to be kept cold. We didn’t say anything about the refrigerator until the next day, when we checked out, only to alert the hotel to the fact that the refrigerator was not working.

At 4:00 pm we ate dinner at Bennington Pizza Plaza, located in a strip mall behind our hotel.  I had baked ziti with meat; Bob had stuffed shells. Both meals came with garlic toast.  Dinner was delicious.  Bennington Pizza Plaza, with its attractive table and chairs for dining in and tasteful seasonal decorative touches, was a notch up from a regular pizza joint.

On Thanksgiving Day we drove from Bennington VT to Bob’s sister and our brother-in-law’s house in Amherst NH. We got up at 6:15 am and went to breakfast about an hour later.  We enjoyed a hot breakfast, with all the selections (waffles, eggs, bacon or sausage, pastries, etc.) normally offered by Best Western hotels. We departed the hotel at 7:45 am, en route Cynthia and Larry’s house. Our route took us on the Molly Stark Trail (Route 9) through the Green Mountain National Forest. 

We stopped for a photo opportunity at the Hogback Mountain Overlook,
a short distance east of Wilmington VT.

Leaving the Green Mountain National Forest, we stopped briefly for a photo opportunity in West Brattleboro at the Creamery Covered Bridge

Creamery Covered Bridge

Cynthia and Larry were not expecting us until after 11:00 am. In order to kill some time we drove into Nashua.  We parked below Water Street at the entrance to Le Parc De Notre Renaissance Franchise.


These art murals are located where we parked.
The art murals appeared to be 3-D.

We walked a short way along the Nashua River, in Le Parc De Notre Renaissance Franchise. The first thing to catch my eye was a sculpture of a woman and a child.


This sculpture pays tribute to the women and children who worked in the textile mills during the first half of the 20th century.

Later in the week we would meet up with a blogging friend and her husband. My blogging friend and her husband live in what used to be a textile mill.

Clocktower Place, a former textile mill,
is where my blogging friend and her husband live.

From Nashua we drove to Cynthia and Larry’s house, arriving there shortly after noon.  Lunch was served around 1:00 pm. 

Table set for four
(Photo by Cynthia)

We enjoyed a Thanksgiving feast of roast turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, baked squash, green beans, Brussels Sprouts with walnuts baked in maple syrup, and cranberry salad.  For dessert we had a variety of delectable cupcakes to choose from.

Dessert selections
My dessert
The four of us and Weezie

We left Cynthia and Larry’s house for our hotel sometime between 4:00 and 4:30 pm, with plans to meet up again at 1:00 pm the next day. We drove to the Clarion Inn located in Nashua NH.  The hotel is about a 20-minute drive from Cynthia and Larry’s house.  We checked into room 235, which would be our home for the next 3 nights. Our hotel room was spacious with a king-size bed and a couch that would fit three people comfortably. Our room would sleep four people, as the couch pulls out into a bed. The room is equipped with a refrigerator, microwave and coffee maker.

We got up for the day on Friday around 6:30 am, after a good night’s sleep.  The clerk who checked us in the prior night said that our room would be quiet, and it was. The rooms on our side of the hotel are used only as needed in late fall and winter. An hour after awakening we had showered, gotten dressed, had breakfast and were back in our hotel room.  There were less offerings at breakfast here than there were in Vermont.  We could make our own pancakes or waffles; there were cereal and packaged muffins selections; yogurt was available ; and there were juice, coffee and tea selections.  We preferred the breakfast at Best Western Bennington.

We spent Friday afternoon and evening with Cynthia and Larry.  We enjoyed a second Thanksgiving dinner that included open-faced turkey sandwiches with gravy and soup that Larry prepared using leftover turkey, rice and vegetables. Later in the day we left to go to an inaugural outdoor light show, located on The Links at LaBelle Winery golf course in Derry, NH. Unfortunately it was raining, so we didn’t see the display.  We drove by a couple houses in Bedford that are usually lit up for Christmas.  One house had decorations outside, but the lights were not turned on.  The other house didn’t have any decorations on display.  So, we didn’t get to see any Christmas lights. For dinner we had Chinese take-out that Bob and Larry picked up.  After dinner we sat in the living room and chit-chatted for a while.  We left for the hotel around 7:45 pm.  Twenty minutes later we arrived at the hotel.

Thank you, Cynthia and Larry, for a wonderful Thanksgiving! We enjoyed our time with you and look forward to the next time we get together with each other.

**TO BE CONTINUED**

Maine Vacation: Edgecomb ME to Utica NY

We departed Pioneer Motel shortly after 6:00 am this morning, on our way home.

Our first stop was for breakfast at McDonald’s in Bath, ME.  We had our customary bacon, egg and cheese bagel and sausage burritos meals.

Our second stop was at Cynthia and Larry’s house in Amherst, NH.  Cynthia is Bob’s sister.  We arrived at 10:45 am and left shortly after 2:00 pm.  We enjoyed good conversation and a delicious lunch. 

Our Lunch at Cynthia and Larry’s House

Our lunch was steak-lamb-turkey kabobs with potato salad and smoked bay scallops in a salad.  Dessert was brownies and lemon/raspberry bars.  Thank you, Cynthia and Larry, for the wonderful meal!

Shortly before we left to continue our drive home, I took a family picture.

The four of us and Weezie

We stopped for the night in Utica, NY at Red Roof Inn.   It was 7:45 pm, more than enough hours on the go!  After checking in, we drove to the nearby Denny’s Restaurant for dinner.  Shortly before 8:30 pm we returned to Red Roof Inn, where we stayed for rest of the night.

This blog post concludes Day 9 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

Maine Vacation: Peru VT to Edgecomb ME

We got up at 4:45 am this morning, which isn’t surprising as we were in bed by 9:30 pm last night.  I had hoped to see the sunrise.  We had a good vantage point from which to see the sunrise, but it was raining.  We did enjoy sitting outside on our covered balcony, though, while it rained.

The Lodge at Bromley provided a complimentary hot breakfast beginning at 7:00 am.  We were disappointed with breakfast.  We expected scrambled eggs, hot potatoes, a breakfast meat, waffles and a variety of pastries (donuts, muffins, etc.).  I guess Best Western and other chain hotels have spoiled us.  The Lodge at Bromley provided hard boiled eggs, miniature waffles because the amount of batter was insufficient, plain bagels, breads, yogurt, cereal, juices and hot beverages. You would think that the hot water would be hot at 7:00 am.  It was lukewarm.  I had to request hot water, which the staff quickly took care of.  With the exception of breakfast, our stay at The Lodge at Bromley was good.

We checked out of the hotel and was on our way to Edgecomb ME at 7:40 am.  As we did the prior day, we instructed the GPS to avoid highways.

Our first stop was in Springfield VT, where we went for a short walk.  The highlight of our walk was seeing a waterfall.

Black River Falls

Before reaching Springfield I read that the town had a waterfall and that it had been selected to host the premiere of The Simpsons Movie, which, like the Simpsons TV show, is set in a town called Springfield.  I saw a photograph of the Springfield Movie Theater taken on July 21, 2007. The photo showed the marquee displaying the premiere for The Simpsons Movie as well as a giant pink donut.  During our walk I looked for a place resembling the photograph.  I found the movie theater but no marquee.  As we were walking back to our car, I stopped a policeman who was walking towards us.  I asked the policeman about the marquee.  I learned that the marquee and any other memorabilia from the premiere of The Simpsons Movie was on display in the Chamber of Commerce, which was closed when we passed by it.

Sign seen when leaving Springfield … OH, there’s the Simpson marquee!

Our second stop was at the Goode Shoppe Lollipop in New Hampton NH, where I purchased a lawn ornament.

Goode Shoppe Lollipop

Oh my!  So much to choose from!

Goode Shoppe Lollipop

The lawn ornament, though, that prompted a stop here was a lawn ornament that I had spotted in someone’s yard a ways back — a yellow cat on a bicycle spinner.

A new home for Kitty Bike Spinner

 

Our third stop was for lunch at Subway in Moultonboro NH.  We saw a baby bear run across the road, in front of us, less than a mile from Subway!

Our fourth stop was in Standish ME, at the Sebago Lake Overlook.

Lower Bay of Sebago Lake

This is a fairly new overlook. In January 2018 the Standish Town Council voted unanimously to approve a lease agreement with the Portland Water District to allow the overlook to be built on district property and maintained by the town.

The mountains seen beyond the lake are New Hampshire’s White Mountains.

We checked into Pioneer Motel in Edgecomb, ME at 3:30 pm.  We will spend the next 7 nights here, while we explore MidCoast Maine.  Pioneer Motel is a work in progress.  There are three single story buildings of rooms, two buildings in the front and one building in the back.  The two buildings in front have been turned into rental apartments.  The building in the back is the motel.  The owner is actively cleaning up the grounds and renovating motel rooms. 

Pioneer Motel
Our room is the first one on the left.

Pioneer Motel (expanded view)
Our room is the first room on the left.

Three rooms were renovated this Spring.  Our room has a new door, new windows, a patio door, new flooring, new furnishings and is newly painted throughout.  It was tastefully decorated with a white, gray and black theme. 

Our Motel Room
Before (Bottom) and After (photos provided by Pioneer Motel)

Our Motel Room
Before (Bottom) and After (photos provided by Pioneer Motel)

 

This is the view from our room. The two buildings are rental apartments.

I took that previous photograph from the porch. The porch is really LONG!

The owner said that he plans to create a screened-in porch for each of the room, with individual stairs leading to each room.

The owner is in the process of installing decks on the back of each motel room.

The owner said that he plans to place a bistro set (table and two chairs) on each deck.

At a cost of $350.00+tax for the week our room is a real bargain.  

 

We left in search of dinner around 5:00 PM.  We drove the short distance to the town of Damariscotta.  We ate dinner at Schooner Landing Restaurant. 

Schooner Landing Restaurant

We sat outside, on the dock.  Our view was the Damariscotta River.  I had a classic fish fry; Bob had Cajun blackened fish.  Schooner Landing Restaurant was a good choice for dinner.

We returned to Pioneer Motel at 6:00 pm, where we stayed for rest of the evening.

This blog post concludes Day 2 of our 10-day Maine vacation (June 28-July 7, 2019).

– TO BE CONTINUED –

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