Sunday, September 27, 2009

Proof That Maine is Beautiful

Every state has its own set of perks. Maine has quite a few.

My husband and I used to live in the mountain region. He worked at a ski resort. Every morning his commute lead him toward and up the mountains.

We are famous for our foliage in Maine.

We have fields and forests. My mother owns over fifty acres, much of which is covered in an almost mystical, dense woods. It was a delight to grow up with.

Our streams and lakes are good for fishing, swimming and boating.

Lobsters are $3.99 per pound this summer in Maine. Unfortunately, the lobster men here are not doing well in this economy. There are turf wars and even violence is breaking out. But you can't beat that price for lobsters.

And we have the ocean. We have a large shoreline, many lighthouses and historic forts. I love being close to the ocean.

My husband's school is just down the street from one of the state parks, Two Lights. He has a day where he is in school all day, and another day where he goes in for just one class. When he goes for just one class, we go with him. We run errands in Maine's largest city and go to the park.
First, we go to the playground.
Then, there are trails down to the ocean, where the waves crash violently against the rocks. We used to climb all over the rocks when I was a kid. It will be a few years before I'm comfortable with my kids going near the rocks. For now, they are content to watch the mighty waves on a bench, from a distance.The perks of our state are free perks, well, not the lobster, or the state park, as we had a pass that was given to us, but the ocean is free. What are your favorite perks that your state offers?


Captain Cleavage said...

I live in florida so our perks consist also of the ocean. I love the beaches here. I have never been any farther north than tennesse (which lets face it...thats still like..south! lol) but I do know our beaches are diffrent. We don't have the rocks and crashing waves. Being from orlando a lot of people do not realize that there is stuff to do besides theme parks which aren't free at all (even if you know someone who can get you free tickets...although I have to admite i have been able to do a 2 day disney adventure so to speak on an amazing 40 dollars for hubs and i) But you do have to do your reaserch and find the best the city has to offer no matter what or where you are :)

p.s.I am all kinds of jealous of you living in main..I bet the weather is nice and cool...right now florida is so hot and muggy you can barley breath and sometimes I think it would just be better for all floridians to wear diving gear in the summer! lol

Scottish Twins said...

My husband and I got engaged in Maine. We think it is one of the most beautiful places in the country (despite the fact that it rained the entire time we were there). I would love to live there, but would be too scared of the winters. The winters in Ohio are bad enough!

The biggest perk to living in rural Ohio is the insanely low cost of living. The other perk for us is that there are so many local farmers, that we can get our food for a lot cheaper that you could in other areas.

The weather is wonderful in the fall - and the trees are beautiful as they begin to change colors. Something always seems to bother me about the other seasons - spring is too rainy, summer is way too humid, winter is cold. And we also have to deal with tornadoes.

But other natural disasters don't happen here, so I like not having to worry about fires, hurricanes, etc.

Petite Mum said...

I'm in NSW Australia, and would definitely have to say our spectacular beaches!

We do have to worry about bushfires from time to time, and we just had a major dust storm, but it's home, and I wouldn't live anywhere else.

Carol said...

I live in Northern Nevada, which is one of the most beautiful places in America (And I have pretty much travelled coast to coast) We have great hiking, tons of parks, Lake Tahoe is 40 minutes away as is Pyramid Lake and the Truckee River. The cities of Sparks and Reno built parks at on the river's edge with easy places to swim. Sparks has a Marina.

BUt most of all I love the views and the mountains.

DarcyLee said...

I live in Indiana, the land of cornfields. And we do have the best summer sweet corn I've ever tasted. Although I don't live anywhere near a cornfield, I do have access to some of the best farmer's markets at good prices. We also live fairly close to Amish country and understanding the simplicity and harmony of their lives is very fascinating to me.

One of my dream vacations is to go back to Maine and spend a week by the ocean and the lighthouses. I was there once when I was a teenager and have always wanted to go back.

Marie said...

I live in Ontario (Canada). I love that the province is huge (I'm not even close to have visited it all). I love that during the summer there will be many farmers markets in this city with cheap, local produce. In the fall, I'll be able to go apple picking at some point. In my city (Ottawa) I live by one main river, and there is another one, plus the Rideau canal, so lots of water, and TONS of pathways for biking and walking. Also, in Ontario, if one likes to visit, there is a lot of attractions.

The only thing I dislike is the alcohol distribution system because alcohol isn't available in every store, and is more expensive than in Quebec for example. (I realize that for some people this might be a plus)

Nydia said...

Hi! I think I just found my new favorite blog...yours, I cant wait until I have more time to read, but just from browsing...Im so excited, I freqent a cloth diapering forum and your blog sparked a new thread in the Thrifty section!! I love new ideas on saving money. I love a simple life style, and although I am a coupon queen, I think I can learn alot here on saving money just by simplifying...although I will never give up my coupons!!! BTW I am a sahm of 4 ages 5 and under, and live in VA.

Penny Saver said...

I'm in the San Francisco Bay Area (where $1000 won't even get you a studio apartment!) We have stunning natural landscapes and are within a few hours of the beach (and good surfing), the bay, the mountains, valleys, marshes, lakes, and giant redwoods you can drive through. You can't beat the mild weather; there was snow once in our town in the 1970's. We're in the breadbasket of America and local, sustainable produce is available year round.

There are so many great cultural activities that are inexpensive and free, like free museum days in San Francisco and San Jose, visiting the missions, concerts, plays, etc. We're very close to Stanford University and there are lots of free festivals and events there that welcome neighbors.

We've talked about moving because the cost of living here is pretty outrageous, but the benefits are so great that we stay put. Also, we're in an amazing school district and want our kids to have the advantage of that!

joyofcooking said...

I live in Los Angeles, California. I've also lived in Chicago (grew up there) and Nashville (lived there for 5 years). Los Angeles can definitely not be considered budget friendly--but there are a lot of great things about living here (and frankly, my salary is much higher here than elsewhere--so they pay you to live in a high cost of living area). Here are a few of my favorite things:
1. the weather---you can enjoy time outside all year round
2. the beaches--and they are free, you can simply park alongside the road and head to a gorgeous beach
3. the mountains--lots of great hiking and places to picnic--for only a few dollars in parking
4. inexpensive produce and wine--since we grow so much of it locally in California, you can find great deals on quality produce
5. so many great places to travel by car---within 5-7 hours you can travel to so many great places: San Francisco, San Diego, Las Vegas, Big Sur/Monterey/Carmel, Santa Barbara--you don't even have to leave California to see some great places and get away---you can go camping as well.

Anna said...

We live in Illinois, in a small laketown. My absolute favorite part of our home is the proximity of the lake, just a short walk down the road. We have access to four private beaches with free fishing, swimming, boating, and exploring.

We have a local water ski team, which was actually number one in the state. They have shows every Friday night or Sunday for free. They also open up the team to children of all ages, from the time they can walk and parents are comfortable of course. There is no fee, but a small donation recommended for gas for the many boats the team uses.

One of our favorite things to do is to take a Sunday drive around the Lake, checking out all the cool houses, Lookout Point, the damn, and driving out on the peninsula or the island.

We are also surrounded by cornfields here in Illinois and our house backs up to farmland. Terrible for mice, but great for four-wheeling.

We have two four-wheelers, dirt bikes, mopeds, and the like that were all given to us free, because my husband can fix anything. Hours of endless fun in the fields, which for some reason are not used to farm on right now.

A typical Saturday dinner, will consist of numerous boys knocking on our door looking for our kboys. If you peek out the window? A line-up of five to six kids on four-wheelers and dirt bikes, sitting in our driveway all waiting for dinner to be over so they can hit the field again. LOL, I guess the midwest is not so boring after all.

Lyn said...

I'm a New Englander, just like yourself. I've previously lived on the west coast, in the south (not deep south), and in the midwest. I always have come back here.

On the positive side, I enjoy the 4 seasons (just when you get tired of one another one comes around). Our fall season is fabulous of course, can't beat the foliage and crisp weather. I love the beach but don't get there so often as I'm not as close as you are. Love our seafood too (yet the $3.99/lb. lobster price has not sadly traveled here). On the challenging side, our state is not doing so well economically, cost of living is very high, and winters are expensive and cold (home is all-electric). But otherwise it's pretty good and I love that one can go to different states and places and it doesn't take forever to get there. :)

mom4him said...

I'm am so jealous! I love your blog but I almost didn't read this one when I saw the title. I've wanted to move to Maine for years. I live in Temecula, California, north east of San Diego. I'm originally from Massachusetts and still miss the seasons changing, fall leaves (my favorite!) and the green. Green trees, green grass, green hills, aahhhh. Here it's the desert, dead, brown, with a few palm trees. You spend a fortune to keep grass watered enough to live.
I will admit there are many great amenities here like the beaches, cultural offerings, and mountains within driving distance. Then there is the weather, sunny, sunny and then sunny! Unfortunately that brings with it the "sunshine tax" on everything. I actually enjoy real weather, you know like wind, rain, an ocassional storm. We visited Maine (the Lakes Region?) the summer before last and it rained and stormed most of the time. Call me crazy but I loved it! I miss thunderstorms which we rarely get here.
I've done some research on cost of living in other states hoping to persuade my hubby to move and I'm amazed at how much cheaper everything is elsewhere. I do appreciate having year round local produce but it usually is more expensive than the grocery store.
Thank you posting and thanks to all the commenters. It's nice to get a personal "look" at what living in other states might really be like!

Lisa Marie said...

We love the national parks here, they are free! And the rivers... we spend a large portion of our free time there! Great Blog!

Treva said...

I just moved to Indiana 3 months ago and I grew up in Virgina not too far from Williamsburg and VA Beach. As a kid we did a lot of camping in the Shenandoah Valley; the drive through the mountains in the fall is one of the most beautiful sights I've ever seen. I was close, maybe 20 minutes on a bad day, to the beach and a small boardwalk. Used to take DD there just about every Saturday morning from May to September. There were some very nice museums (including the largest maritime museum in the whole world and a "living" museum) and for history buffs it is THE place to visit to understand some of how this country started. Oh, and there were 7 military bases -- I <3 jet noise!

Indiana is the home of festivals; there are over 500 festivals a year just in this state. We've only been to 1 so far, but it was worth it. Not only that but there are farmer's markets everywhere and multiple CSAs. I've researched and picked out one I like so I'm excited to get started with that next year. Where I live in Indiana Indianapolis is 60-90 minutes away, depending on traffic and where in the city you're going. I told DH that we should make it a point to check out The Children's Museum, which is supposed to be *very* cool. The events here seem very family friendly; in VA they seemed geared towards kids or towards adults, but rarely both. Here family friendly is really for the whole family. I like that.

In VA I was surrounded by more than 1.3 million people. Now I live in a town of 978. BIG difference, but I love it out here. Yes, I miss home, but I also love the different, slower-paced life we have made for ourselves out here. And I love the small community and knowing every single one of my neighbors by name and walking to school & the post office and, my favorite, porch talkin'.

Barbara said...

We live in Vermont. I love the change in the seasons. Lot of trails to go hiking. Deer, moose, wild turkeys. Farmers markets, pick you own orchards for berries and apples. Church and Grange suppers. Sugar on snow in the spring. so happy that God planted us in this place.

Lisa said...

Hi, Emily! I live in Ohio. It has much natural beauty. There is Lake Erie, Wayne National Forest& many lakes & natural areas to camp or just hike & enjoy.We have many historical sites & festivals.There is always something to find to do for free here. Someone else said Ohio's prices are low, but not really, as our wages aren't very high either.I love the diversity of the weather here. Winter & Fall are my favorite times of the year.We have everything from tornadoes, floods , blizzards to years ago earthquakes. Last night we had severe lightening, thunder & rain. I love storms the best of all. The thunder literally made the house shake& wondered , if something else had happened a t first. Ohio is a good place to live, just not good on being able to find a job here now.We have the largest Amish / Mennonite population.

Carla said...

I live a little pond hop over from you in Nova Scotia, Canada :). We have many of the benefits that you have. Most of our friends have moved out west for better jobs but I would never trade my ocean for the mountains. I practically grew up on the beach as it was right in front of my house as a child. I love how it smells as I still live right off the ocean (but not as close to any beaches).

I live relatively close to where a lot of food is produced and I love supporting our farmers (even though it's hard on our pocketbook). I love taking the kids on trips to show them where our food comes from. We had cheap lobster here too this summer at around $4 a pound (my dad was able get them off the wharf from the fishermen for $3.50 or less when the price was it's lowest; still have some in the freezer).

I love having seasons (although some would beg to differ, that we have summer and winter, lol!). I especially love autumn so I am in my glory right now. I love the colours, the sights, the sounds, the smells, the feel of the cooler air, everything!

I am so blessed to where I live and I thank God every day for where I live!

Anonymous said...

As a single dad, your posts are beyond inspiring and doing what you are able to with what you have fits my buddhist interested to a T. I did choose the organic path but renting small apartments and using public transportation and bicycles has helped me make ends meet. Keep up the witty ingenious (crock pot!!) posts. Brilliant!


crabcakes said...

We live on Cape Cod but have bounced around Massachusetts quite a bit. We have tons of beaches here and also some nice parks and forests. For indoor fun, just about any library I've ever been too offers free passes to things like local children's museums and also discounts at some of the bigger museums.

mary bailey said...

I'm in rural South Carolina where we enjoy a reasonable cost of living. The summers are HOT and the winters are mild, with very pretty springs and falls. We are within driving distance of the beach and the mountains. We like history and we can always find historic sites that are fun and cheap or free.

I've enjoyed this post. Though I enjoy everything you write, this one is a nice change.

Rachel said...

I am a life long Florida resident. A PBS special called Florida "the most Jurassic place on earth". In my yard I see turtles, snakes, and frogs, and other wildlife is all around. We sometimes see a coyote at night or early morning. What is amazing is that animals love the towns as much as the woods. one nearby neighborhood has a wild boar living in its park. When I say park, this is not a mowed down urban, landscaped park, but a wild, natural place. No one bothers the boar, and he bothers no one.

Growing up we lived three blocks from the bay,where we swam and crabbed. We took out crabs home to be boiled for supper, and they were so good! It is very humid, but I guess it suits me. The saddest thing is the development of our local beaches. There are huge condos everywhere, and you can no longer even see the gulf. We have beautiful state parks and springs. i love cold weather, and here is north Florida we don't get that much, but more than the southern part of the state. I have visited out Texas, Nevada, Colorado, New York, New Jersey, Missouri, and most of the southern states, and the only other place I think I would truly like to live is coastal Georgia.

Atheist Mama said...

I'm in Oregon, but I have a friend that lives in Maine - doesn't Maine have tons of wild blueberries? *jealous*

I totally LOVE living in Oregon! I love the trees, lakes, rivers, having the ocean near by. I love that we are generally a pretty liberal state and that I live in a town that is very eco-friendly with tons of bike paths and health food stores, etc. I love all the wild black berries and various pear, apple and plum trees that are around.

I also love not having sales tax!

Okay - and I apologize for typos and whatnot...I don't have much time this morning!

Anonymous said...

I live in Indiana, and I second Treva.

Also, Treva, I don't know where you live, but Nashville, Indiana is beautiful this time of year...absolutely gorgeous. The Children's Museum is amazing to me, still to this day. I also think the Indianapolis Zoo is pretty spectacular. Some cheaper things I love in Indiana would be Spring Mill State Park in Mitchell. They have events throughout the year that require nothing more than the regular car fee to get into the state park. We frequently go there when the village is open and pack a picnic lunch. The candlelight tour of the village is really nice, but it was just last weekend. They're having a Halloween event pretty soon. The park also has great trails, camping sites, and a nice lake.

I think one of the greatest things about Indiana is the low cost of living and the state parks. A lot of the larger state parks have nature centers and free events, so it's affordable, good exercise, and fun...all rolled into one. Almost every town also has a festival, and they're always free to get into, so that's nice. New Albany has a great fall festival that spans multiple streets.

Meg- too lazy to sign into Google.

stella said...

I live in Nashville now, but I go to Maine once a year to visit friends. I LOVE Two Lights, and have a photo of all of our children sitting on the rocks (looks like your first photo above). I refer to that photo as the time they were watching,"Ocean TV." It was mesmerizing.

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