Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Oh My Gourd! Maine Girls Weekend

I got in late Thursday night for a girls weekend in Maine with some of my oldest and dearest friends. Remember this post from three years ago. We got the band back together. I went to bed that first night to find a painting I did in Traverse City during our friend Andy's wedding on the bedside table. Mary sure knows how to make a girl feel welcome.

We added a fifth band member, Bridget who got in Friday morning. We were all a little unclear of when, so the whole crew welcomed her with hilarious laughter waiting for the slowest turning door to open in the Portland airport. Notice Shannon's bling booty pockets.

Seriously, slowest door ever.

We headed straight to Gritty's for lunch, hand holding, many group photos, a few drinks and laughter. I love this photo so much.

Shannon and Mary are my two oldest and best friends from middle school. Too funny how different we are. Shan is sporting her bling jeans straight from the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Mary in her Chucks. I was told specifically not to wear white jeans and Tory Burch flats on this trip. So I brought my favorite Boden boots to make Mary happy.

Our waiter wanted no part of the paparazzi. 

We did some major carb loading in preparation for our girl bonding. Notice the butter pat with the mac and cheese. Good move Gritty's.  This was all BEFORE I locked the keys in Mary's car. Whoopsies. 

Notice the difference in the facial expressions?  We had to be separated in the car. Thank goodness for Holly's cool calmness and Bridget's reminder phrase, "It's all good." Shannon and I caused little to no trouble sitting together in the back seat with Bridget. We just seat danced to Rihanna's "Drink to That" ,our unofficial theme song for these weekends.

The tow truck arrived in 20 minutes and all was saved. He had the most beautiful Irish Sheep Dogs too that were a perfect welcome to lighten the mood.

I will never be able to live this down. We couldn't really talk about it during the weekend. Too fresh. But my guess is we will laugh one day about it. (I'm kidding, we laughed about it once we were in the car.)

We got back to Bath, Maine on that chilly Friday afternoon, went to a coffee tasting at the greatest kitchen shop Now You're Cooking where the proprietor is from Bath, England. Something in the window said, "Oh my Gourd!" and it became a phrase of the weekend. I found new buffet plates for my collection. I'm seriously, seriously becoming my mother. The leaves were in full frontal fall mode.

Downtown Bath is my favorite. I could wander through the little streets, stare at the charming homes, pop in and out of shops, and sit by the water for hours.

Sexy leaf peeping.

Self timer camera hilarity. The dog is goosing Holly.

We snuggled into Mary's cozy house before heading out for dinner. 

It was fun being around things and photos I grew up with as well. Like this picture. I love this wedding photo of her parents probably as much as I love my own parent's wedding photo. 

And I had to take a photo of this cute photo of Mary and her siblings. I mean look at how cute that little girl is on the lower left? That's our Mare!

I can't remember who shared this video over the weekend but this is seriously the funniest thing on the internet! And if you have time click here for more laughs. Girls weekends. Aren't they just the limit?

That night we had a fantastic meal at Frontier in Brunswick, Maine. 

It's funny to me that the photo our volunteer photographer took is clearer of our a$$es shot than the group shot. We just wanted to see Shannon's bling jeans again. We were after all, all about that bass.

We ended up back in Bath for karaoke, selfies through tears and dancing with good old boys at the bar. There are videos of Shannon and I dancing together when two 75 year old gentleman broke in to ask both of us to dance. We shagged liked the best of them. It was an absolute blast. 

I made Cinnamon Baked French Toast late that night so we could have a lovely breakfast on Saturday morning. I may have been a little tipsy making it but it is so easy, you just have to do everything the night before. Afterwards, I force read everyone Ruth Reichl's review of Le Cirque from Garlic and Sapphires. It was a wild and crazy night.
Read more at:IngredientsFrench Toast:Butter, for greasing1 loaf crusty sourdough or French bread8 whole eggs2 cups whole milk1/2 cup whipping (heavy) cream1/2 cup granulated sugar1/2 cup brown sugar2 tablespoons vanilla extractTopping:1/2 cup all-purpose flour1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar1 teaspoon ground cinnamon1/4 teaspoon saltFreshly grated nutmeg1 stick cold butter, cut into pieces, plus more for servingWarm pancake syrup, for serving1 cup fresh blueberries, for servingSpecial equipment: 9-by-13-inch baking panDirectionsFor the French toast: Grease the baking pan with butter. Tear the bread into chunks, or cut into cubes, and evenly distribute in the pan. Crack the eggs in a big bowl. Whisk together the eggs, milk, cream, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. Pour evenly over the bread. Cover the pan tightly and store in the fridge until needed (overnight preferably).
For the topping: Mix the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and some nutmeg in a separate bowl. Stir together using a fork. Add the butter and with a pastry cutter, and mix it all together until the mixture resembles fine pebbles. Store in a re-sealable plastic bag in the fridge.
When you're ready to bake the casserole, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the casserole from the fridge and sprinkle the topping over the top. Bake for 45 minutes for a softer, more bread pudding texture or for 1 hour or more for a firmer, crisper texture.
Scoop out individual portions. Top with butter and drizzle with warm pancake syrup and sprinkle with blueberries.
2012 Ree Drummond, All Rights Reserved --ALL CREDIT GOES TO REE. This is one of my favorites so I want to cut and paste it so I'll never loose it!

Breakfast on Mary's great grandmother's china with REAL maple syrup, Saturday morning.

Day two couldn't have been more beautiful. The sun came out, it was 20 degrees warmer and we had to take Shannon to the airport in Portland so hit the long rocky beaches first to walk the dog. Mary's woodpile is pretty swoon worthy. 

We drove down to Popham Beach State Park. If this isn't the most idyllic New England scene.

There is an awesome old fort there on the Kenebec River. 

Notice the kayakers. It was 70 degrees.

 Martin house.

Gotta love the filters on Instagram! In my memory it looked just as bright blue as this photo.

I was expecting to see Edward Hopper on the beach with his easel. This is my favorite, favorite photo of the whole weekend. I want to blow it up and frame it. The light. The red roof. The blue sky. The sea grass. It is such a pretty place. 

Every home had a weather vane that was more awesome than the last.

I was capturing the day, being very slow and present and I saw a seal here while the girls were way ahead on the walk, tiring out the dog.

Another bookshelf treasure at Mary's house.

Lily running.

Bridget, Holly, Mary and Shannon went to Xavier together in Cincinnati. Mary, Shannon and I went to grade school and high school together in Kalamazoo. It was fun seeing everyone after a 9 year gap of time. Like no time had passed. We laughed our faces off. Some of us pushed each others buttons (namely me to Mary), out of love. It was so much fun just having a break in the busy fall to be able to get away to this beautiful part of the country with old friends.

The album cover.

Mary dropped us in Freeport while she took Shannon to the airport. We had a great time having lunch, some had lobster, and hit the LLBean store.

There was a pumpkin festival for Halloween and this precious doctor wanted to hear the heartbeat of the baseball mascot. I mean is that darling?

We drove to Boothbay for the sunset. What a piece of heaven on earth.

The light was just perfect. Mary and I became friends again and all was right with the world. 

Lobster bait net. 

Two lighthouses in the distance.

Holly gave me the idea for this shot. There were stacked stones all over this area. Very zen. A perfect place to pray.

Pink sky at night. 

Thanks so much for the fun weekend Mary! It was great seeing everyone. Love your face.