Monday, August 25, 2008

our weekend Aug 22-Aug 24, 2008

Jim and I decided yesterday to take off for the day and go do "Maine stuff" with the kids. Unfortunately, Kristin had to work. Jesse really didnt want to go at first, he (and I) have bad colds and he just wanted to stay home. In the end, he decided making Mom happy was a good thing. So we headed to Belfast. Jim has been wanting to check out Reny's dept store, and so we did.

He was able to buy quite a few things for his "Man Room", which is what we call the new space he has built for himself in the garage.

He closed half of our 2 car garage off and finished it all in pine and real trees, built a bar, and hung all of his deer mounts and stuff down there. We are waiting for the furniture to arrive, and then we will get him a big screen TV.
We had a birthday party for him Friday night, big gang of friends, and most of them brought MAN ROOM presents, so he is well on his way. The party was a blast. I am SO grateful to Kristin, Andrea, Ciarra and Jesse for the help they were getting the room ready and cleaned. Kristin (and Ciarra heeeheee) decorated the whole room, it was a HUGE load off my shoulders.

So, we did Reny's, then we hit a flea market. In Maine, every weekend they have flea markets near here, and mostly it is just STUFF, a lot of other people's junk, mostly the kind of junk you would find at a bad yardsale. But some treasures, too. He happened to find some old posters and ads for hunting/fishing/guns, and they were perfect for his room.

Next, we headed to Moose Point State park, where we played on the rocky beach for awhile.

The kids and Jim looked for shells in the rocks, Ciarra came home with a little pile.

It was actually pretty chilly there, and no place to swim,

so we headed to our next stop...Crosbys!

Crosbys is a really neat little summer lunch place that sells seafood in a little shack, with picnic tables under a gazebo and a small play area.

Ciarra got to swing for a bit while our food was prepared.

We go a few times every summer, the food is delicious! The kids had chicken fingers, Jim had a huge lobster roll, and I had a haddock basket..yum!

After ice creams,we headed back into Bucksport, to visit the new observatory over the bridge at Fort Knox, officially called the Penobscot Narrows Bridge.
The Penobscot Bridge site also is home to the Penobscot Narrows Observatory, the first bridge observation tower in the United States and the tallest public bridge observatory in the world. The tower reaches 420 feet (128 m) into the air and allows visitors to view the bridge, the nearby Fort Knox State Historic Site and the Penobscot River and Bay.

The old bridge (The Waldo-Hancock Bridge) was a very narrow 2 lane bridge, with chunks of concrete falling out and plywood reinforcers, it always felt high, but in reality it wasnt. It was RICKETY, driving across it in a stuff wind could be very much like a rollercoaster ride. The state put in a new bridge last year, and it is HUGE by comparison!

The Penobscot Narrows Bridge is a cable-stayed bridge over the Penobscot River near Bucksport, Maine. It replaces the Waldo-Hancock Bridge, built in 1931. The new bridge is 2,120 feet (646 m) long. It is one of two bridges in the U.S. constructed recently to utilize a cradle system that carries the strands within the stays from bridge deck to bridge deck, as a continuous element, eliminating anchorages in the pylons.[1] Each epoxy-coated steel strand is carried inside the cradle in a one-inch steel tube. Each strand acts independently, allowing for removal, inspection and replacement of individual strands. The cable-stay system was designed with a system that uses pressurized nitrogen gas to defend against corrosion. Additionally, in June of 2007, six reference strands within three stays were replaced with carbon fiber strands - a first in the U.S. Monitoring on the strands will evaluate this material for future use in bridge designs. These engineering innovations helped the bridge appear in the December 2006 edition of Popular Science as one of the 100 best innovations of the year. The total project cost was $85 million. The bridge was designed as an emergency replacement for the Waldo-Hancock Bridge and from conception to completion, just 42 months elapsed. A unique project delivery method, referred to as 'owner facilitated design/build' partnered Maine DOT with FIGG as the designer and Cianbro/Reed & Reed LLC as the contractor.

From the top, you can see just about everywhere, even Cadillac Mountain! It is a little nerve-wracking, you are in effect inside a glass room 42 stories high, and you can see straight down. The old bridge is dwarfed by this thing. You can see the Bucksport paper mill,
Fort Knox (we skipped the Fort today, but it is an awesome old fort!) and the very New England town of Bucksport. The kids loved it, and Jim did too.

I am a little scared of heights, but I kinda enjoyed it too...if I didnt look down too much!

By the way! This place is fully handicapped-accessible! It has every feature of Universal Design you could imagine, including a wheelchair elevator shaft! Neat!

Arent they sweet together? I just adore these guys.

We had a really busy, fun weekend. The kids start back to school Wed, and I am going to really miss the time with them, even if all we do is hang out. Sometimes, I really want to homeschool. :(


Chris said...

Wow, what wonderful time you guys had! Thanks for sharing all of those great pictures...makes me want to get in the car and drive to Maine!

Chris said...

Wow, what wonderful time you guys had! Thanks for sharing all of those great pictures...makes me want to get in the car and drive to Maine!