Thursday, August 30, 2012

Maine Trip; Day 4; Back to the 90's

It was an early start to what was going to be a long day that I did not want to end.  I jumped in the rental car and headed to Bridgeton Maine where I would pick up my long time friend Pat.  I have played in a number of bands with Pat and he is a great guy whom I had not seen in nearly a decade.  As soon as I saw him, I felt great, like I was home.  I knew the day was going to be something special.

Pat and I threw some Crass on the stereo and were off to Falmouth to pic up another old friend.  When we arrived, our friend Matt showed us the cabin he lives in and we chatted for a few.  Matt set up a lot of shows in the Portland area and worked on a number of projects.  I think a lot of us saw what he was doing as an extension of the political work we were doing in central Maine.  It was another warm feeling to hug my old friend.  Piling in the car, the three of us headed to Portland to pick up another two friends.

Cal was first on the list.  Cal has always been a character.  As kids, he was the youngest of the group and he was often getting into awkward situations.  Always forgiving, Cal has been a great friend that I had not seen in about 5 years.  A long embrace and we were on the way to get our other friend Dugan.  I met Dugan at a show in Waterville Maine in the late 90's.  Soon after, he was in Portland working on a lot of the same projects Matt was involved in.

Within minutes, we were all off to Biddeford Maine for the South Street Festival.  This first show with this group of friends in what might be 14 years.  It felt amazing.  It was like we never missed a step in all these years.  A family of choice that persevered through time and circumstance, a love unconditional.

The festival was a bazaar turn of events but once Mischief Brew started playing it livened up.  It was a great show and a lot of fun.  It was just like old times, watching bands with good friends.

We packed into the car and headed to a place recommended bu Dugan, Chicago Dogs.  It was a great choice of vegan hot dogs.  Collectively, we destroyed baskets of veggie dogs and fries, I even had a locally brewed root beer.  Then it was off to a place called Reds for some vegan soft serve.  There vegan flavor was pineapple and we all got a cone full and enjoyed the Maine weather before taking some silly photos.

We dropped both Cal and Dugan off back in Portland before heading to the 2nd show of the night.  Cal's band was playing a show later that night and Dugan had some other obligations.  Matt, Pat and I walked around Portland for a bit talking and sharing stories of the years.

Around 8pm Mischief Brew played their 2nd show of the day.  It was an acoustic show and was fantastic.  Our good friend Westie arrived just in time to catch most of the Mischief Brew set.  Dugan show up just as the show ended to see us off but we actually had decided to head over and catch Cal's band play.  Cal was thrilled and we even saw several old friend at the show.

The rides to drop folks off and the long ride home were a little saddening but the day was one of the best I can recall in years.  There was a comfort of friends and settings.  I really miss that part of my life.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Maine Trip; Day 3: Lunch, Reid, Dinner

Friday was a lax day.  I woke up at my dad's house and hung out for awhile as they worked on the house.  I was supposed to meet my mum for lunch but as I got back into town she called to say she would not be able to get the time away from work but my sister, Cait, was off.

Cait and I got together for lunch at Bagel Mainea.  They have a wide variety of bagels with numerous spreads (including vegan options) and veggies.  I always enjoy my lunch there.

After lunch, Cait and I did some errands and then I dropped her back off in time for her to pick her kids up from school.  My mum was out of work then and we opted to go to Reid State Park, off to the beach!

We climbed on the rocks, took pictures, looked in the tide pools, chatted, and watched the waves crash against the rocks.  It was a nice afternoon.  It is nice to be only 45 minutes from the coast.

My mum and I went to dinner at a hot spot in Augusta.  I had a nice veggie wrap with their amazing fresh cut homemade fries.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Maine 2012; Day 2: Dad's House

After waking up and playing with the dogs at my mum's house for a bit on Thursday, I headed out to my dad's.  My dad's is always a fun place as we typically play games and relax.  He was off for the week to get some construction done on the house but fortunately for me, it was raining.

We watched a movie, played pool, played some video games, and simply relaxed.  It was a calm day and I even got to meet the new dog that lives with him, Roscoe.  For dinner, we got some Chinese food from a local spot with several tofu dishes.  My sister came by and we played some cards for awhile.

The weather cleared up a bit later in the evening and I was able to play outside with Roscoe.  It was a really relaxing day, just what i needed.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Maine 2012; Day 1: Pemaquid Point

I flew in on Wed and my mum picked me up at the airport.  It was great to see here.  I got to see her a few months prior in Florida but it had still been to long.  We drove back to Augusta and took care of getting my rental car.  She headed back to work and I drove around my old home town and let the memories overwhelm me.

After my mum got out of work, we took a trip to Savory Maine for dinner.  It is the second time I have been there and it was again, very good.  I had a dulce, tomato, and lettuce sandwich with a side of roasted potatoes, salad, and ratatouille.  It was a nice evening to sit out on their back deck and enjoy the ocean breeze.

After dinner we went to Pemaquid Point.  We were there for a few hours, walking the rocks and talking.  I really enjoy Pemaquid and this trip was no different.  It was good to have a break from Atlanta.  The waves crashing against the rocky coast of Maine was the perfect getaway.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Ashley had a Birthday

Due to some unexpected and unforeseen circumstances I was unable to write a blog prior to leave for my Maine trip.  This was one of the blogs that should have been posted before I left.  The usual trip day summaries will follow shortly.

Ashley had a birthday!  We kept it low-key and stayed in Atlanta, however we had a great day and kept it moving.  We got started around 1100am and our first stop was Village Pizza.  Neither of us had been there before so it was a nice change.  They had a "village vegan" style pizza that is kid of like a vegan meat lovers.  It had pepperoni, sausage, and veggies.  The pizza was huge and after a big lunch,  we took some to go but not after a grueling game of scrabble.

From there we went to the north side of Atlanta to play laser tag.  Again, I had never been and was fairly skeptical.  I did not really know what to expect, even as we all went into the course.  It was Ashley and I, three teenage boys, and about fifteen 10 year old kids.  Shortly after entering, I was gunning kids down and having a blast!  It was great!  I took 2nd place and we immediately signed up for the next run.  This time Ashley and I tried to stick together but lost sight of each other shortly after.  I was still ruining kids and racking up points!  Another 2nd place finish.  Great fun and score cards to boot!

The next stop was a mini-golf place in north west Atalanta.  It was indoors and had a glow in the dark monster theme.  It was a good time, although packed.  We shot the course out of order to avoid the crowds at the harder holes.  It was a pretty cool place and we had a good time.

In a time crunch, we zipped over to a comedy club.  We saw John Heffron who won a TV comedy competition.  Unfortunately, they did not allow photography in the club so I have no pictures for the blog world.  He was pretty funny and we split a basket of fries to hold us over until a late dinner. 

After the comedy club we headed back to Decatur where Ashley was surprised to see some of her family had met us at Burnt Fork.  This classic Bar B-Que place has some nice tofu dishes and some vegan sides.  It was a nice dinner and a great way to wrap up an eventful day.  It was good to see her on her birthday!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

I am a Winner!

I recently was the winner of a giveaway on Just the Food.  I was super excited when I discovered that i had one.  Honestly, Joni had to come tell me because I forgot to check back on the give-away post.  I opted for the 500 Vegan Recipes book.  The shipping was super fast and I got it yesterday.

I hope to go through the book today and pick out some things to try.  I always enjoy looking through new cookbooks.  They generally inspire me to make some new dishes.  I have been slacking on posting my own recipes recently but I hope, after a rejuvenating trip to Maine, that will change.  Until then, I have 500 recipes to read!  Thanks Just the Food!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Pizza for Me Day!

After being told that I should do my own thing yesterday, I did.  I mowed the lawn, got some Real Estate business done, did some errands, cleaned a bathroom, wrote a bit, played some games, and even made myself a pizza!

I went with a new favorite, BBQ chickin pizza.  A southern treat before I head back to Maine for a bit.  Sometimes I just want a few slices of pizza, it can be such a comfort food.  I do not make it often but maybe I should...

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Worthless Word Wednesday

Life has caught up with me in a major way.  I have been overwhelmed with a slew of work and personal situations.  Fortunately, I am due for some time off from the jobby job and the Real Estate is settled enough that I can disappear for a short amount of time.  Enough time to separate from some of the stress and enjoy some time around my friends and family.  I am going to Maine for a week.

The kitchen has been seeing too many one-player foods recently.  Quick foods and foods on the go have been the story for a couple weeks.  I have not made much to share with the blog world.  However, the readers of this blog are getting the treat of some old pictures of foods I made and never got around to blogging about.

Let me know your favorite and ill try to re-make it and post a recipe!

strange whoppie pie like item

sweet chili tofu

famous fries

fruit heavy salad

roasted potatoes and cauliflower

delicious lentil veggie mess

roasted red pepper hummus

butternut squash stir-fry with soy chickin

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Leftovers? Shepherds Pie!

When I make seitan I seem to always have leftovers.  It is generally a good thing as I am able to do some fun things with what remains.  This time I used the left over seitan from the dinner with the cracks last week to make an old favorite of mine.

Growing up in New England, I had a very specific definition of shepherds pie.  It was always (and generally only) meat, potatoes and corn.  For the most part, that is how I have always made it, although I often toss in a bit of kale if I have it.  This time I did not.  It was straight up, old-school shepherds pie.

I only made a few servings to take to work for the long week.  It was perfect.  Shamefully, I often forget how much I really like this dish.  In the back of my head I was thinking it as going to take a long time but I made it in about an hour and it was fantastic!