Thursday, January 9, 2014


Nicole's parents
The terminus of our northward and eastward travel was, of course, Maine.  We were planning on spending Christmas with Nicole's family, with a side trip to Bar Harbor at some point in our stay so we could visit with friends there as well.
Nicole and Madeline
with brother John and Colleen
Once we arrived at Nicole's folks in Auburn, ME we got a chance to relax and give Madeline time to visit with her grandparents.  After a few days there we headed about a half hour away to visit Nicole's brother.  John and his wife Rose have a daughter, Colleen, that is ten days older than Madeline, so they got to know each other and played for the couple of days we stayed there.  During our visit with Nicole's brother, Maine got hit with a winter storm and we ended up with about a foot and a half of new snow.  We took advantage of the new snow to let the girls play outside a bit, and by the time we headed back to Nicole's parents the roads were pretty much clear.  We spent a few more days in Auburn and then took off for Bar Harbor.
We had a nice visit with Nicole's old boss Sean, then headed over to our friend Judy's house.  About this time the area got hit with an ice storm, and we decided the wood stove and beautiful view of the mountains on Mount Desert Island won out over the idea of a three hour drive on highways resembling skating rinks.  By the time we left the next afternoon they had most of the roads plowed and salted and except for a short icy section of highway the trip went fine.  We returned to Nicole's parents to find the power out.  Their house, along with about 100,000 other people, lost power during the ice storm.  A real bummer two days before Xmas.  Thankfully the power went back on for us just a couple of hours after we returned.
Our Christmas eve, Christmas day and the day after was all about spending time with Nicole's family.  That and a lot of eating.  We opened gifts, with the majority of the packages going to the two little girls.  As usual, the wrapping and boxes were just as entertaining as the gifts themselves.  Madeline got to meet cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, great-aunts and uncles, and even her great-grandmother.  It was an exciting, entertaining, and exhausting couple of days.
Madeline with her great-grandmother
We were just getting used to the cold and snow when it was time to pack up all our stuff and head out.  We were planning on being in Philadelphia to spend New Years with my aunt so we had some miles ahead of us.

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