Thursday, December 04, 2008

Our Thanksgiving in Maine & Sky Watch Friday

Megan and I decided to go to Maine for thanksgiving this year to be with her family and we had fun. We woke up at 3:30 on Thanksgiving morning to get ready for our 5:50 flight. As we were in the air somewhere between Columbus, Ohio and John F. Kennedy Airport, I captured the first light above this city. Would it not be cool if someone could identify this locale? I guess I could take a look at our flight route that day on flightview, and look at the time the photo was taken, and figure it out. I should do that.
With a quick stop in JFK, we left to go to Maine. We arrived about little pond at noon. Since Maine is so far east, the sun goes down very early there. The sun is clearly behind the trees here, but it was only 4:08 p.m. Amazing? By 5:00 it is pitch black.

And as you can see, it has been plenty cold in Maine already this season, and there was about an inch of ice on the pond when we arrived, but no snow on the ground.

Thanksgiving was served and we had a mighty feast. Everyone, including Dublin, wanted a piece.

What a great meal. But alas, we were tired, having been up since 3:30, and the early sunset makes it seem that much later.

So it was off to bed. What would the next day bring?

Well, the next morning everything was quite frosty. I managed to take a picture of this snail and some lichens with my new panasonic LX8 camera that I picked up at at Big Lots for under 100 bucks. Finally, I have a pocketable camera.

While I was taking these shots, Megan and her parents donned their blaze orange to make a trip down to the outlet of Little Pond to see if Beavers had blocked the flow of water.

The two ladies and myself walked while Megan's dad drove their Expedition. Although Beavers had not dammed the outlet, the chicken wire installed by the road crew to deter beavers had actually collected debris, so Kate and Glen went at it with their garden tools, eventually removing the grate.

There were plenty of fresh beaver cuts on the alders however, they had been active on little pond this fall.

In this area of the pond, there is plenty of winterberry, a member of the holly family whose bright red fruits really pop on a gray day.

After clearing the culvert, Kate decided to check out the other side of the pipe. Apparently, she found some debris blocking the stream on that side of the road as well. Here she balances precariously attempting to pull out some clear plastic, and endeavor at which she was ultimately successful.

Just after we were done clearing the stream, it began to snow. How perfect for the day after Thanksgiving. The pond, bog, and stream was quickly blanketed with white.

On our way down, we noticed tons of trash alongside the road. On our way back to the house, we decided to pick that trash up and toss it in the expedition as Glen drove it along the berm.

When everything had been picked up, the back of the Expedition was full of roadside waste.

Our jobs being done, it was time for fun. I challenged Megan to a snowflake-catching-with-your mouth- contest. I'm not sure who won.

Still following? Were still on Friday the day after thanksgiving. In the afternoon it was time to go down to the Dentist's office (glen, my father in law, is a denist) to have my new mouth guard /bite plain thing made. I didn't capture that part, but I did take a picture of Megan's belly at the office. Amazing that we will soon be parents. It is very real though, as I can even now feel the baby kick. Megan says that the baby can kick hard enough to make here shirt move.

After the dentist, we stopped at a few stores and then it was back to Little Pond. The snow had stopped, but it really changed the landscape at the pond. The gray afternoon was almost totally devoid of color, really creating an interesting mood and I was able to capture images unlike any others I had taken there before.

And that is a brief look at the first day and half of our trip to Maine. We were there for 24 more hours, and I'll have more photos soon.


P.S. I almost forgot- for more Sky Watch images, go here.


  1. Nice sky pictures. The yawn, made me yawn. Now I am sleepy. I like the snow pictures too.

  2. I love this photo diary! What a great trip- relaxing, fun, comfortable with no travel issues. :-)

  3. I love the photo with the creek flowing center! Seems like you both had a great time. That is NOT a Little Pond as the name suggests! Now, I'm yawning.

  4. Very nice shots, I especially like the first one.

    Regina In Pictures

  5. Great photo from the plane - let us know if you figure out where you were.

  6. What a great trip and I'm impressed with the photos that little camera took. Megan looks happy and healthy and baby, too :-) I like the snail cool at this time of year. And of course the shots of the snowflake catching contest. Next winter you can teach baby to do that.

  7. Your pictures of Maine are beautiful! It really makes me want to go there! I too had to yawn when I saw the picture of Megan yawn!
    Tom - can I ask permission to paint the picture of the stream, doing a demo with full credit of your work and site? I would like to give you guys a copy of the painting when finished.
    Thanks so much - Chris

  8. Fun spending Thanksgiving with you and the family. Your father-in-law looks like Wilford Brimley.

    Okay, question...the orange vests???

    That is an amazing aerial shot from the plane. It would be cool to find out where you were when you snapped it.

  9. That first picture is amazing. Great series of shots. This island of mine rarely gets snow.

  10. loved your post...amazing how we cram so much into short periods of time, isn't it?
    the photo from the plane was awesome...thanks for sharing.

  11. Tom: Neat sky captures and some neat photos of your trip to Maine.

  12. Looks like you had a wonderful time! Good for you to help clean up the earth like that. Too many people seem to forget it's up to all of us.

  13. Connie- Thank you. There is no shortage of snow or slumber in Maine. We always get great sleep when we visit. There is something about being in the Maine woods that is calming and provides for R & R.

    Thanks Megan- Our travel was smooth, wasn't it? Sure, layovers suck, but Delta and US Airways came through for us this time.

    Thank you Sandy.

    Jack- Taking pictures from airplanes is something I relish everytime I fly. I hope for clean windows.

    Spooky- In Ohio, a pond basically equals a human made tiny puddle. In Maine, they have real ponds. Little Pond is actually a little pond at under 30 acres. I think the threshold between pond and Lake in Maine is probably around several hundred acres or so.

    Wren- I will. I need to do some research.

    Mary- Thank you. The Panasonic LX8 is a fairly capable little camera. I think it will be a few more years before our baby has a chance at beating us in a snowflake catching contest, but you can be sure that we will start coaching it up right away.

    Guy- Thanks, that was a great view from the plane. Kudos to Megan for booking such an early flight!

    Hi Chris- That sounds great. I'll be in touch.

    Earthmother- The orange vests are so that we don't get shot by hunters thinking that we were deer!

    Hi Babooshka. It snows feet at a time in western Maine!

    Hi Tom- Yes, we did have a very nice time. And we had some snow, which was fun.

    Gretchen- Picking up the trash was viral. It just kept going and going, and I just wanted to pick up more and more. It was quite surprising how much trash there was along the road here in rural western Maine, but this is a major state route.


  14. On the orange vests... In Maine, in the wilderness, in November... You betcha! I've never hunted a day in my life but I have an orange hunter's cap. I wouldn't walk in or near the woods without it!