Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Recap

2015 was an exciting, challenging, trying, and rewarding year. I thought it would be nice to do a bit of a recap to say good-bye to a year that was chock full of change and major life events.

January-March

During this past winter we joined a new church which has become a huge part of our lives. Right before we left for PAX East we learned that Christopher received a wonderful promotion.Christopher also started his own business, Riverside Computer Services.

First Congregational Church of Brewer
April-June

April, May and June were incredibly trying but ultimately wonderful months. Our apartment in Brewer flooded and we lost many of our belongings. This trial however led us to search for a home of our own and we closed on a remodeled nineteenth-century home in Hampden in early June. To learn more about this experience read here, here, and here. I also celebrated my 25th birthday on June 5th. 



July-September

This past summer was full of academic tribulations and rewards. I attended a conference at St. Lawrence University for the second time in July, defended my thesis and received my Master's degree, visited Canada for the first time for a travel grant (I have a four part series on my travels there), and began my Ph.D. program. We did sneak in some fun and relaxation with an awesome 4th of July weekend, a Red Sox game, and our first time blueberry picking





October-December

On October 11th we celebrated our first wedding anniversary with a trip up to Moosehead Lake. To boot, Christopher also started free-lancing for a tech site and I decided upon a dissertation topic and committee. We were also blessed this season to host guests on Thanksgiving and Christmas. 





How will we ring in the new year? Our plans are a up in the air. We might join in the festivities in downtown Bangor, or we might stay warm and cozy in our lovely home. We wish you a very happy and safe new year! 


Friday, December 18, 2015

Best Restaurants in Bangor Part III- Pubs


Here is the moment you have all been waiting for-the best pubs in Bangor! Everyone loves good food but good drinks even more so.

1. Geaghan's Pub & Craft Brewery 
This place has been opened since 1975 and is run by the descendants of the original owners. It has good old fashioned pub food and excellent beer. I personally like the Bangor Brown.

2. Sea Dog Brewing Company
Sea Dogs was founded in 1993 and now has multiple locations Maine, New Hampshire, and Florida. Their mascot is a dog named Barney who once belonged to the family. The food is fantastic and their drinks are equally so. Both my dad and father-in-law love the Owl's Head beer.

Image from http://www.seadogbrewing.com/beers.php

3. Paddy Murphy's
A small classic Irish pub. Give their awesome Guinness stew a try.

4. Nocturnem Draft Haus
Nocturnem is a German-themed bar. The drink list is VERY extensive. They have also just started a brewery-bus tour which sounds like a blast.

5. Orono Brewing Company
This is actually one of the few breweries I have not been to, but everyone I know loves it. They have a very impressive collection of IPA's.

Image from http://oronobrewing.com/

6. Black Bear Microbrew
This microbrewery has been around since 2008 and is a favorite of the University of Maine student. Their Gearhead beer, a dark amber, is delicious.

7. Penobscot Bay Brewery
Penobscot Bay Brewery is about twenty minutes south of Bangor .They are owned by the same people who run Winterport Winery and Bay Brew Ice Cream. My favorite beer from them is their Brownie-Chocolate Milk Stout.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Best Restaurants in Bangor Part II- Fancy

It is time for part two of the best restaurants in Bangor. These are the types of restaurants to take a date to or treat yourself to. Part Three will cover the best pubs and places to get a drink.

1. Thistles
Thistles draws from recipes from Argentina, Colombia, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and Spain. If you love fusion food, this is the place to go. I personally love their lunches and flan.


Image from http://www.thistlesrestaurant.com/


2. 11 Central
This is one of my favorite restaurants in the area. Their pizzas are awesome and they have a fantastic cocktail menu.

3. Blaze
Blaze has a location in Bangor and in Bar Harbor. They are known for craft beers and their wood fires. I always order BBQ tacos with their jalapeño margarita. 


Image from http://www.blazebangor.com/


4. Taste of India
Bangor has a surprisingly large number of ethnic restaurants and Taste of India is one of the best in the area. They are known for their Tandoori items. I particularly love their tikka marsala. They also do take-out in case you want to eat their delicious food at home.

5. Little Vietnam
Who would have thought that Bangor would have such an authentic Vietnamese restaurant? Their Boba or bubble tea is awesome and I highly recommend their B1 and B2.

6. Fiddlehead
This is an expensive but delicious restaurant. Their menu is seasonal and relies on local ingredients. I am very fond of their cucumber lemonade and I remember drinking about four glasses of it. 


Image from http://www.thefiddleheadrestaurant.com/gallery/

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Best Restaurants in Bangor Part 1- Casual

Christopher and I do not have dinner dates, so when we do it is a really treat! This post will be divided into three, so here our favorite causal restaurants.

Hole-in-the-Wall's

1. Thai-To-Go
This place has some of the freshest, best Thai food I have ever had. This is a to-go only restaurant and everything is made to order Just note that since everything is made to order, it usually takes about 45 minutes. Also, this place is cash only.

2. Jamaican Vybz Take-Out Restaurant
Two professional chefs from Jamaica decided to open a restaurant in Bangor. This place is the real deal.

3. Friar's Bakehouse
Friars from the St. Elizabeth Monastery in Bucksport make some of the most delicious bread and sandwiches in Bangor. Be sure to check their Facebook, because their hours are a little strange.

Image from tripadvisor.com

4. Bagel Central
This place is a Bangor classic and one that no one should miss out on.

5. Angelo's Pizzeria
Angelo's has a location in Hampden and Bangor. The prices are a little higher than most pizza places, but the food is fresh and delicious.

6. Moe's Original BBQ
If you are craving some ribs or pulled pork, this is the place to go. They have restaurants across the country, but it is unique in Bangor.

Diners

1. Dysart's Diner and Truckstop
Dysart's is a Hermon/Bangor classic. Their portions are huge and their breakfast is divine.

Image from Dysarts.com

2. Coffee Break Cafe
This little cafe in Hampden also sells ice cream during the summer.

3. Broadway Coffee Shop and Dairy Freeze
If you love good ol' fashioned greasy diner food, this is the place to go. Cash only.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Life Update 4.0


Eating: Anything BUT candy. I am already so sick of candy and I know the season for all things sweet had just started.

Drinking: Hazelnut coffee. I was drinking pumpkin spice coffee for awhile, but I quickly tired of it. We are also enjoying the variety pack of beers from Hannaford's. One recent favorite was Red Hook's ESB.


Reading: Some good ol' Agatha Christie. I have really been trying check out all our adorable local library has to offer.

Watching: House shows like House Hunters and Fixer Upper on Netflix. It is a good reminder of how lucky Christopher and I were to nab our beauty.


Doing: School is in full swing. When I am not at school, I am at home doing stuff for school. Christopher's computer repair business has really taken off lately and he has been contributing as a freelance writer to hothardware.com

Anticipating: Christopher and I have tickets to see Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band Next week! We are also super excited to see his family for Thanksgiving. It will be the first time we have had someone stay over in our new home!


What have you been up to?

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

McPhetres Farm Forest


I drive through Veazie almost everyday, but only recently took a hike through McPhetres Farm Forest. The forest is a 25 acre lot next to Fairview Cemetery. There are many different trees including white oak and 100 year old white pine trees.


This was an awesome little hike. All the trails are well-marked and several wooden bridges prevent hikers from getting stuck in swampy areas. There are a number of hills, so this is a great place to work those glutes!


You cannot beat an autumn hike. Look at those leaf colors!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Little Moose Mountain Reserved Land


On our way home from our anniversary trip, we stopped for a hike in the Little Moose Mountain Reserved Land.  This area has several trails of varying difficulty. Our particular hike took us around Big Moose Pond. We loved this hike and would do it again in a heartbeat.




Thursday, October 15, 2015

Brassua Dam


Brassua Dam was a hop, skip, and a jump away from our campsite. Brassua Lake was once composed of two lakes- Little and Big Brassua Lake. The Brassua Dam was constructed in 1925 which caused the water to rise 30 feet and form one large lake. The lake is known for its fisheries and fishing opportunities. We also spotted a number of enthusiastic kayakers.

 If you are in the area, it is definitely worth a look-see.






Tuesday, October 13, 2015

A Little Country, A Little Rockwood (Maine)



Christopher and I just celebrated our first anniversary! In honor of our anniversary, we took a trip to Moosehead Lake. We stayed in a cabin in Rockwood, one of the prime places to spot a moose and the location of the dock from the mainland to Mount Kineo. Our cabin was on the Moose River, a waterway which connects Moosehead and Brassua Lake. Our cabin was also at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains. We were surrounded by some gorgeous scenery to say the least!

Some tips about Rockwood:

1. This area has a ton of ATV trails, ski trails, and fishing spots. There are not however, a ton of designated hiking trails. We had a tough time finding a lot of the trail heads.

2. Mt. Kineo can ONLY be reached by boat. The ferry from Rockwood is $10 per person, round trip and the ferry leaves every hour on the hour until dusk. Mt. Kineo also has a golf course and a snack stand for golfers and hikers.

3. Rockwood is rather isolated. Stop for groceries in Greenville or you will resort to pillaging the small grocery section of the local gas station.


We already have a ton of plans to explore more of Moosehead Lake. Barrows Falls is definitely on our list next!


Friday, October 2, 2015

Best Inexpensive Date Ideas in Bangor, Maine


Many people complain that there is nothing to do in Bangor, but I have found that this simply is not true. Here are my best inexpensive (even free) date ideas in Bangor! Keep your eyes peeled for later posts, about best restaurants, parks, etc.

Image Courtesy of CinemaTreasures.org

Movies
  • River City Cinema offers free movies in the summer at Pickering Square.
  • The Bangor Drive-In just re-opened in Hermon! They charge $27 per car and $20 per car on Tuesday's or for members of the military.
  • There are several movie theaters in the area, but the cheapest one is Hollywood Cinemas. Regular admission is $5 before 6pm and $7 after 6pm. Tickets are $3 all day on Tuesdays.
Music
 
Image Courtesy of TripAdvisor.com

Sports
  • If you love horse-racing, the Bangor Raceway is free. You can find the schedule here
  • The Bangor Sports Arena has pool tables, bowling, mini-golf and an arcade. Check out this website for more details and individual pricing. 
  • Nine-pin bowling is a big deal in New England. Check out the Family Fun Bowling Center in Bangor or the Old Town Bowling Center
  • Ski or tube on the Hermon Hill. A full day of skiing is $27 per adult.
History and Science

Image Courtesy of CityProfile.com
Arts
Wine and Beer Tasting

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Canada Quirks

First off, some province signs! Whenever Christopher and I passed into a new state on our US road trips, we always made sure to snap a picture. I felt compelled to do the same thing in Canada.

T
This was the first place I attempted to us Canadian cash. I felt like Arthur Weasley with muggle money. Why is it multi-colored? Why does it feel like plastic? What the heck are loonies and toonies?


I never got used to measuring in liters. Or reading kilometers. I always had to mentally convert while driving. MPH forever!


Apparently Canadian Lay's needed their own marketing.


I had a Keith's Amber beer at a library-themed called The Library Pub and Merchant Tavern. It was delicious.


Saturday, September 26, 2015

Digby, Nova Scotia and a Short Ferry Ride

I decided to take the Digby-Saint John ferry on my way home to the states. I missed the morning ferry which means I got to know Digby, Nova Scotia really, really well. It is a itty bitty seaside town with a good bit of history.





Admiral Digby was the main person of importance during Digby's early history.



There was also a lovely Anglican church with a large, old graveyard and a church cat.


Saint John was gorgeous at sunset from the ferry.