the cost of living in Maine is OUTRAGEOUS, people. Here is why... the take-out food is incredible and the yarn stores are a-plenty. Seriously!? How can 'they' expect us to get by when the food and the fiber is so irresistible!? ;)
We're fortunate to have the best food in the world right here in our town. The babe and I split a cinnamon roll from Maine Bean once a week when I pick up a pound of the best coffee evar. (Sebago Sunrise) Gilbert's Chowderhouse has the best fish nuggets and fishy fries... Eric and I split an order for lunch on his day off. Rose's has the best pizza in the world... seriously... oh how we've missed New England pizza the sauce is tangy and the crust is perfect... thin but still chewy.
There are plenty of ethnic restaurants around, too. We have to shoot for pleasing the whole family hence the fish and pizza. But I'm eager to try some Thai which is my favorite... Thai Paradise in Brunswick keeps catching my eye on my way home from Purl Diva and The Knitting Experience.
I'm so over the whole Dunkin Donuts thing. We loved DD coffee when we lived in CT years ago. I was excited to be near a good, cheap cuppa coffee again but I'm not to thrilled with it anymore. I prefer my own from home I guess.
Starbucks is downright awful out here. I think they put one less shot of espresso in their Grande... I've only had a couple and don't care enough to go back to find out.
Also -- the grocery stores are amazing. The organic produce sections are huge and very affordable. The chicken - ohh - the chicken! I know I talked somewhere about how bad the chicken seemed to be getting in Iowa. Here the split brea sts are huge and juicy and cheap! $1.99 for 5 huge brea sts!? However, the ground beef is suspect. I didn't like GB much to begin with. I've considered getting the meat grinding attachment for my kitchenaid and just grinding our own but it just seems so unsanitary (like there would be some possible part of the gadget I wouldn't be able to clean), and like a chore. Honestly, beef could slip off of our regular menu in this house and no one would really care.
I wasn't as wow'd by Whole Foods as I thought I would be. The take-out section is huge and if you can catch it when everything is fresh I'm sure it's great but everything looked skinned over and like it had been sitting out for hours and hours... not exactly appetizing. The brick-oven pizza looked good though and they had a section for custom burritos which also looked tasty. All of the specialty counters are amazing -- the bakery, the coffee roasting station, the chocolates, the cheeses, the fish section was amazing, too. It just didn't feel like an ordinary grocery store where I'd shop on a regular basis... not that it matters because it's a half hour away from me anyway. It felt more like a destination -- a homemakers amusement park maybe!? Haha. I did get some good granola, a super cute fair-trade bracelet, organic mangoes and some of their own honey lip balm which I lurve more than Burts Bees.
Also -- there are so many farmer's market signs everywhere... I'm excited to visit all of these. I'm eager for warmer weather because I think that this entire area is going to change so much. It'll be so different from the overwhelming snow-covered tundra that greeted us here not even a month ago.
... and don't get me started on the yarn stores! I have been to many and wow. I'm overwhelmed by the abundance of fibery goodness out here. Knitting and all fibery culture is so much more mainstream out here. Yarn stores abound and everyone knits it seems. I still haven't found a knitting group but honestly I'm not really actively looking right now. I'm content with knitting on my own for now. I am looking forward to all of the fiber festivals coming up in the warmer months. I also really want to learn how to spin. I've been entranced by spinning wheels and the zen of it all for a long time... maybe a wheel for my birthday? We'll see. I'm kind of intimidated by all of the spinning stuff... and I can't keep up with my knitting as it is.