Monday, October 18, 2021

Monday, October 18, 2021, MN

A cold spell has caused me to go through winter clothing and reorganize my closet this week. Other than needing a couple of pairs of wool socks, I am in good shape for the long, cold winter.

I had a first-time haircut appointment Thursday afternoon with Shirley and I really like her. She did a great job on my hair and we found lots of very interesting topics to talk about. I will definitely be seeing her again. It’s not that I wasn’t happy with the haircuts that I had been getting from Jeanell but she is almost 20 miles away from me now.  Shirley’s salon is within walking distance.

Kathy (lives in my building) and I got to talking last week and since we both enjoy walking, we met up on Sunday morning and walked and talked for 3.5 miles. I had well over 10,000 steps in by the time we got back home. It is so nice to have someone to walk with - it just makes it go so quickly.

Lois called me yesterday morning to see if I was interested in joining them and Ben’s family to celebrate Dennis’ birthday. It was a beautiful fall day and I wasn’t about to turn down an invitation to be around people, especially family. It was a great afternoon that included a walk to a nearby playground, sitting around a campfire, and having some great chili, cornbread, and apple crisp for dinner.

When I got back home, I walked Frisco and then Tom and I had a very nice Duo video chat. He is back home in Apache Junction, getting settled in and reconnecting with friends and family. We had an enjoyable visit - to be continued next week.

By the end of the day, I had walked seven miles and had almost 17,000 steps in for the day. I was tired and ready for bed early.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Monday, October 11, 2021, MN

After making a batch of chili yesterday and some Happy Birthday Brownies for Roger, I headed out this afternoon to meet up with them at Rochester KOA. I feel like it is always nice to not have to cook dinner after a day’s drive. They have started their trek to Arizona where they will be spending the winter and I really wanted to see them again before the spring rolls around. We had a very nice visit for a few hours and then I headed back home again.  Happy Trails, you guys!

Monday, October 11, 2021

Sunday, October 11, 2021, MN

We had our family celebration of Camille and Norah’s 8th birthday today and it is so great to see what kind, loving, talented and appreciative girls they are becoming. They both designed their birthday cakes and baked them with the help of Mom and Dad and they decorated them by themselves.  Norah’s request was for a Chocolate Caramel Monkey Face cake and Camille’s was for a Tie-dye Rainbow Cake.  Here are the results:

We hung around, opened gifts and managed to get some good family photos. It was a very enjoyable afternoon.

Saturday, October 9, 2021

Saturday, October 9, 2021, MN

Life is good! As I walked Frisco this morning, not fully awake, with my head in the clouds, a Bald Eagle took off from the treetops and flew right over my head. What a beautiful, graceful bird! A great way to start the day.

Our weather for the last few weeks has been unseasonably warm and beautiful with temps in the mid to upper 70s.  It looks like today might be the last we see for a while, as we will be dropping below 70 for the first time in a long time.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Wednesday, October 6, 2021, MN, WI

Way back on Saturday morning, I met Ben and Charlotte when the twins were dropped off for their Gymnastics classes. Charlotte had already been to swimming, so there she was with a wet back and butt because she forgot to bring underwear with her.  She was feeling a bit cold, so I gave her my raincoat and that did the trick.  We walked over to the farmer’s market and sampled a few things, picked up a few items (apples, corn, and eggs for me - carrots, apples, and honey sticks for Ben), and grabbed a hot dog for Charlotte before we had to get back to pick up Norah and Camille.

On Wednesday morning, I picked Mavis up and we headed out on a road trip in hopes of finding some brilliant fall colors, some places to shop and some good eats. The colors were not quite as brilliant as we had hoped but we did see some scattered patches. 

In Osceola, we parked along the street and checked out a few shops and the waterfalls, then stopped at The Watershed Cafe for a tasty brunch.  After leaving there, we went to Interstate State Park on the Minnesota side of the St Croix River and walked some of the trails around the Potholes.  The park has over 200 potholes of various sizes, all were formed when the powerful water and sand from the St Croix River swirled and formed the potholes, the deepest one is 60-feet deep but there are many that are quite small.

I ‘borrowed’ this photo from the website-hope it’s ok.

Trees really do grow out of rocks. Amazing!

A friendly passerby offered to take a photo of us.

From there, we headed south on MN95 that ran along the St Croix River. It is along that stretch that we saw the most color.  I spotted a sculpture garden alongside the road and had to do a U-turn and go back to check it out. It is a place that I might want to stop at another time, as we just didn’t feel like doing that much walking.

It was just a short driver farther south to the sweet town of Stillwater. We found a place to park and checked out a few shops before heading back home. It was a very nice day in good company.

Thursday, September 30, 2021

Thursday, September 30, 2021, MN

As I was heading out for my walk yesterday morning, I saw a large flock of White Pelicans flying in a southern direction. The migration is a true sign of fall and because of the summer drought, we are seeing the leaves turning colors much sooner. I’m feeling like I need to take a long drive up north to see the colors.

This tree is at the entrance to my parking lot.

The girls schools had their annual fundraiser, Dragon Dash, this week - they get donations for the school, then have to run around a track, doing at least 30-35 laps. I wasn’t able to make it to Norah and Camille’s event but did go and watch Charlotte run her laps on Wednesday. She said she ran 90 laps, but I think she might have miscounted, although she was quite driven at times.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Sunday, September 26, 2021, MN

Since my refrigerator had no fresh produce in it, I decided to find a farmer’s market nearby and headed to Savage to stock up on fruit and veggies. It was a rather small market but there were plenty of choices and lots of late summer goodies available. I spent $25 and came home with 2 ears of sweet corn, a head of cabbage and broccoli, a bunch of radishes, kale, and spinach, 3 tomatoes, 3 onions, a small melon, about 8 Honeycrisp apples, and a large flower bouquet - it seems like a lot for that money.

When I got back home, Frisco and I went for a nice walk on this beautiful fall day. Temps are in the upper 60s and will warm up to a perfect 80 degrees today.  I fixed myself a healthy egg scramble with onion, spinach and cheddar cheese when I got back home.

The fans that I have used all summer have a heavy coat of dust on them, so I took one apart and gave it a much needed cleaning. By the time I finished, I was ready to lay down, do some reading, and take a rest. I no more than laid down and the phone rang and Ben invited me to meet him, Charlotte, Norah, and Yoshi at Minnehaha dog park for a walk. It was sure nice to be on the trails along the Mississippi River again and to just hang out with Ben and the girls.  Yoshi had a blast running around among all of the other dogs and taking frequent dips in the water.  I didn’t let Frisco off the leash, as I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to catch him if we wandered off, and he seemed to be content being on the leash.

I just got a call from my brother, Ron, and he has successfully relocated to Kansas City where he will live at Rita and Denny’s Stadium View Apartments and become their after hour’s maintenance guy. He is feeling good and positive about his life change and I’m wishing the best for him.

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Saturday, September 25, 2021, IA, MN

After breakfast and a walk this morning, I loaded up my car and Frisco and I heading back home. It was an easy 3.5 hour uneventful drive and we were back at home by 2:30.  The farther north I drive, the more fall color I saw on the trees off in the distance. The next few weeks might be a good time to take a drive up north.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Wednesday, September 22, 2021, IA

On Sunday, we left Cedar Falls and headed southwest to Griff’s RV Park near Altoona, IA, not much more than 100 miles and a 2-hour drive. The park is very large, with 150+ sites and we are in the older part of the park where the sites are much smaller, gravel with a concrete pad, and among the worker bees.  The newer parts have beautiful lawns, a fountain in a small pond, and much bigger sites - I guess that is where the longer term guests get to stay. We do have a nice grassy area, a horse pasture, and a couple of very nice evergreen trees behind us, so we are good for another week.  The nicely paved Chichaqua Valley Trailhead (20+miles long) is adjacent to the RV park and we have walked it several times.

The Bridges of Madison County was our destination on Tuesday, after breakfast and a walk. It was after 11:00 when we left the RV park and we had a 50 mile drive south to get to St. Charles where the visitor center and the first of the six covered bridges were located.  The Imes Bridge was the first that we saw.  We chatted with a sweet little old lady at the visitor center who shared some great tips about what to see in the area.

From there, we headed west to Winterset and saw the Holliwell and Cutler-Donohoe Bridges, then farther west to the Roseman Bridge (the one that was featured in the 1995 movie, “Bridges of Madison County” with Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep.  A side road led us to the Pammel Park Campground (we were not impressed) and the Harmon Tunnel (we were impressed) that was built by a man and his 4 sons in 1925.

Back in town, we walked around the 1876 Courthouse that was under major construction and centered the town square.  The friendly lady that we had spoken with in St Charles suggested that we visit the Montrose Pharmacy that had an old fashioned soda fountain that has been run by Cathy for the last 32 years.  I opted for a cup of  Cheddar Potato Soup and a piece of apple pie.  Tom and I shared an old-time Cherry Coke.  We then drove north on US 169 to the Hogback Bridge before heading back to our home at the campground.  

The bridges were all painted red and the inside walls were covered in graffiti, mostly initials and dates. Surprisingly, we didn’t see many dates earlier than 1995 - I guess people had more respect for property back then and were not interested in defacing the bridges. Several of them were built by the same man out of massive boards and different structural arrangements, designed to withstand the severe winters and be able to carry people and goods across the rivers.  The water levels in the Middle and North Rivers were all pretty low, I don’t believe a canoe or kayak could float down them right now.  We saw all but one of the six bridges.

It was an all afternoon excursion that took us through some beautiful parts of Iowa and was a good way to spend an afternoon.  For years, whenever I passed through the area, I would see the signs and say “some day I will come back and see the bridges” - now I can add them to the list of places that I have been to see. 

While walking on the Chichauqua Trail that runs along the RV Park, we noticed a huge construction site with 3 large cranes and after doing some research, I learned that it is an expansion of Facebook’s Data Storage Center. There are already several large Facebook buildings nearby.

Tom spotted this guy on the concrete trail - haven’t seen a Praying Mantis in a while.

The last few days of my stay were spent taking long walks, doing some shopping, taking naps, and hanging around the campsite.

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Saturday, September 18, 2021, IA

We have managed to get at least two miles of walking in each day, but many days more like four.  The last two days have been around Big Woods Lake - such a pretty walk.  We’ve done a bit of shopping - one trip to town for new towels for Tom and one for a few groceries. I was going to pull the grill out of the trunk of my car the other day so we could grill some steaks but the wind was going to have an effect, so I opted to cook them on the stovetop. That turned out to not work very well either because of the fans and the air conditioner running (had an effect on keeping the pan from getting hot enough), so I ended up with a steak that didn’t get nice and brown and was not rare enough for me.  It was fine with Tom but things like that bother me - I expect my steak to be perfectly browned and cooked to the right doneness to give me a rewarding feeling of a yummy steak dinner.

Last night we went to Cedar Falls for some Mexican food and live music. I really like this area and the downtown is really nice with a nice assortment of restaurants and shops. We had a beer and ate our food on an outdoor seating area, then walked to the little park where the music was. There just happened to be a brewery right across the street, so we sat at a table and drank a beef and listened to the music, then walked some of the path along the river.  

Just a couple of photos from downtown Cedar Falls. There are several nice sculptures on the corners and many of these great black and white photo murals on the sides of building.

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Tuesday, September 14, 2021 - MN, IA

I was up and had walked Frisco, had coffee, loaded the car and was on the road by 9 am on Sunday morning, heading to Cedar Falls, IA where I would be meeting Tom at the Big Woods Lake County Park and we would spend the next week. We were unable to reserve a site in advance so wanted to get there early to get an available site.  Tom got there before I did and called to say there wasn’t going to be a problem getting a spot. I arrived shortly after he did and we drove around and picked out Site 12 that backed up to the lake, a beautiful spot to call home for the next week.

Yesterday, after our walk, we drove to George Wyth State Park and Blackhawk County Park to check them out, then stopped at a little bar for a beer on our way home.  Today, we went to the Cedar Valley Arboretum and walked the paths, strolled through the gardens, and had the park to ourselves until we were ready to leave. The park is beautiful and the plants were identified well. The topiary was great!

I just love this pretty Water Lily!

We stopped for a Papa Murphy’s pizza on the way home and had a late lunch/early dinner, then picked up some firewood and sat around the campfire for a while. Neither of us could remember the last time we had a campfire.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Saturday, September 11, 2021, MN

Today is the 20th anniversary of the four terrorist attacks against the United States that took the twin towers in New York City, crashed into the Pentagon, and forced Flight 93 that crashed into a field in Pennsylvania.  All planes were hijacked and taken control by al-Queda terrorists. 

It was also the day that Ben was returning to the US from a vacation in Tokyo. He was on a Thai Airways plane that took off that morning and was enroute at the time of the attacks. His flight was diverted from Los Angeles to San Francisco (just where he needed to be). Mike and I were focused on the terrorist attacks and fearful that our son might not make it home safely. Mike spent hours on the phone with the FAA and Thai Airways trying to get information and learned that Ben was on the plane, but he was unable to find out where he would land.  Flights were grounded and being diverted all over the world and many airports had shut down and were being monitored by the military.  His flight was allowed to land at San Francisco, escorted by military fighters that had been scrambled as a precautionary measure.  The passengers didn’t know anything about the attacks until they landed and found the airport deserted as they were escorted out by police and security.  Needless to say, we were elated when we heard that he was safe on US grounds.

This has been another busy week.  I spent Tuesday with the girls and we went to the zoo. It was kind of a bust because we didn’t go in any of the indoor exhibits (except to see the fruit bats) as we wanted to keep our distance from others and there weren’t many animals in the outdoor exhibits. The girls had more fun at the playground than anywhere else at the zoo. All of the concession stands were closed, so no ice cream treats until we stopped at Wendy’s for a Frosty.  They started back to school on Wednesday.

Bob and Penny arrived for a few days vacation on Wednesday and are staying in a downtown hotel.  I picked them up and we went to Mancini’s in St Paul for a delicious Walleye dinner. It sure was nice to see them again!

On Thursday morning, they came over here and saw my apartment and then we walked the 9 Mile Creek trail. After that, I met them at their hotel and we went to the Farmer’s Kitchen Restaurant for some lunch and then walked the trail to the Stone Arch Bridge.  We parted and later that evening they came back to my place and we walked to Willy McCoy’s for dinner. It seems like all we do is eat.

Friday night we met at Ben and Jill’s, ordered dinner from Broder’s, and had some wine and lots of good conversation. It’s been about seven years since they have seen Ben and his family. We had a great visit!

They head back home today and I will spend the day getting ready for my 2-week camping trip with Tom in Iowa.  The summer is coming to an end and he will start his trek back to Arizona after our time together.

Monday, September 6, 2021

Monday, September 6, 2021, MN

My cousin Jo came for a visit on Thursday and stayed until Saturday. Friday was a misty day - not raining, but not dry either, so we didn’t do any outdoor stuff, but went to my favorite consignment store, Turnstyle and the Arc Thrift Store.

Charlotte attended a Camp Innovation at the Bakken Museum this week where the children design and building their own inventions, practice creating thinking skills, and make magic tricks. At the end of the week, they had a Big Show where they could show their families their inventions (had to incorporate electronics). She made a diorama of a bat cave and outside the cave was a moon that lit up. They demonstrated their inventions to many visitors. I know she was nervous but she did well. It was well attended by her parents, sisters, grandparents and cousin Jo.

After the Big Show, we all gathered at their house to have pizza and give Charlotte her gifts. We then had Great Grandma Quinn’s Green Dessert.

Jo left late in the morning yesterday and Frisco and I went for a nice walk around the neighborhood. I took a nap in the afternoon and finally got around the hanging my glass balls in the living room window.

Today, we walked a good stretch of the Nine Mile Creek - such a beautiful place with the paved path going through heavy hardwood forest, tall hills, and the fast moving creek providing the soundtrack. I feel fortunate to have this nearby and I think it will be very nice to walk in the winter.  Today, there was some white debris on the path and I thought it might be paper mache, but later discovered these huge puff balls on the forest floor. Apparently, some kids decided to break them on the pathway. 

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Wednesday, September 1, 2021, MN

I spent the day with Camille and Norah and they were not interested in going to a playground, preferring to just stay at home and play with their toys, jump on the trampoline and do crafts with me. We made lots of origami nesting boxes that they decorated with emojis.

I sold my dining room table tonight - to a gal that sure seemed to have an appreciation for the age, quality, and beautiful wood. I’m posting a picture of it, so I will never forget that it came from my good friend Marty and belonged to her Grandmother. It has had a special place in my home for years, there is no longer enough room for it in my small apartment.  

She is an avid canoe paddler and spends a lot of time in the Boundary Waters, so she may also be interested in buying my Loonworks canoe or know of someone who might want it.  Little by little, my load gets lightened.

Sunday, August 29, 2021

Sunday, August 29, 2021, MN

It took me two days to recover from last week, taking it easy, catching up on laundry, going for walks, getting a few groceries. And then I was ready for Wednesday when I spent the day with the girls.  I considered taking them to the St Louis Park pool, it was the last day they would be open for the season, but they suggested going to Veterans Park. We did that and all was well until two of them had to go to the bathroom and the porta-potties there grossed them out. We went back home and had some lunch and went to Wood Lake Nature Center in the afternoon.

The nature center has lots of taxidermy animals and they were fascinated with the fact that they were real animals that were stuffed like their favorite stuffies. The great thing was that they were able to touch each and every one of them and they also liked the interactive displays. We had the place all to ourselves.

On Thursday, Lois and I took the girls to Eagle Eye Farm in River Falls, WI for a tour of their farm that has more unusual animals; Alpaca (several babies), Llama, Kune Kune Pigs from Australia, Highlander cattle, Shetland Ponies, and several breeds of Sheep.  We got to go in the pens and feed and pet most of them, but the ponies were too feisty and the cattle had horns. The farm is spotless, as the pens for the Llamas and Alpacas were artificial turf to keep their hair clean as they only get shorn once a year. By that time, their wool is 6-7” long and it is sent to a processing plant for cleaning and spinning into wool. The products that were sold in the shop were just beautiful - soft and luxurious.

After that we went to a nearby park with a playground and had lunch and played until the girls were tired of it and we headed back home. Just in time as the storms that were predicted for the next two days hit hard about an hour after we got back home. In fact, it rained so hard on my way back home that I had to pull over and wait a few minutes until it slowed down a bit.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Last week was such a delight! It was so nice to be in Stoughton and to connect with so many great family and friends. I spent the entire day with Pat on his birthday and we had sort of planned to go fishing, but it was a hot and humid day, so we changed the plan and went to Delaney’s Junk Shop in Baraboo - the great thing about Delaney’s is that Dr Evermore’s Sculpture Garden is behind it.  I never get tired of admiring those amazing creations.

The picture is the ‘Amythic Obsession’ at the entrance to the garden with the Forevertron in back. Darn, the tree branch is blocking the top of the rocket ship that will take him to the heavens when he dies (he died in 2020). There is more information and photos on the website:  World of Dr Evermore

From there, we drove around Baraboo and Madison and I got to see several of the buildings that Pat has worked on this summer. He has amazing plastering skills, that son of mine!  In most cases, the projects are repairs of old stucco and structures. The Wilmer Neighborhood Center (bottom left) had crumbling brick and mortar in the corners and the arch above the window was deteriorated. After our drive, we hung out at their house and I made Collard Greens with Bacon and Ham for dinner - it was a big hit for their keto diet.

On Friday, after coffee with Pat, Dawn and I got a nice walk in, although we left a bit late and it was starting to get hot and humid again. I hung out with her and Pat and Tracey until it was time to meet Patty at the new Tru Hotel in Stoughton for our 55th class reunion activities.  We managed to get a little pool time in before the Friday night informal gathering that was held on the lovely patio by the river at Nauti Norse. We got there early so we could have their tasty fish fry. Folks started trickling in and we probably had a turnout of about 30-35 classmates.  There was a lot of story telling and laughter going on and we were back at the motel by 10:30 - we are getting old!

On Saturday, Susan picked us up at 8:30 and we headed to Mandt Park for the annual Coffee Break Festival and Car Show. I saw three of my Starr School Road neighbors just as I was walking in and also saw all of the members of my cousin Larry’s family. We strolled around looking at cars and some of the vendor booths before heading to Livsreise.  There, we met a few other classmates to tour the Norwegian History Museum. The building is beautiful and many of the displays are interactive, so you can learn the stories of individual immigrants, what their journey from Norway was like, how long it took them to get here, and then what life was like when they got settled.

Next on our list was Bill Amundson’s (a local Norwegian story teller and artist) house where he sells his Rosemalled Yard signs. You see the colorful squares all over Stoughton and parts in between. Now there will be one in Ben’s yard in Minneapolis.
After that, we headed to the flea market at Madison Speedway, but there was not a car in the parking lot and not a flea in sight. We went back into Stoughton and had some lunch at Sugar and Spice and then toured the Stoughton History Museum.  Then it was back to the motel for some down time before the reunion.  It sure was nice to hang out with my besties from high school and it’s so nice that we have remained besties all through our lives.  About 70 people (45 classmates) attended the event at the Country Club and it was a lovely night with finger foods and a very brief program with drawings for door prizes.  Again, we were cleared out by 10:30.

On Sunday morning, after coffee, Pat and I got a nice walk in before packing up for our return trips back home.  I had several stops to make before heading out of town; Dawn’s for zucchini, Swiss chard, and tomatoes, Pat’s for final hugs from him and Tracey, Doug’s to give him one of Mike’s Navy mugs, and a stop to say hello to Karen, Nan, and Dale and to deliver a gift for Monica’s baby shower (the blanket that I crocheted). I was off and headed for Minneapolis, a 4.5 hour drive on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.  I did see some signs of fall along the interstate - the Sumac is starting to turn orange and red. 

Frisco was happy to see me and I got to see the girls’ new trampoline and have dinner with the family - a nice topper to a great week!

Yesterday was Mike’s birthday and he would be 74 this year. I spent some time looking at photos and stumbled across this goofy one, so I posted it on Facebook and got lots of good responses.  Happy heavenly Birthday to my husband of 45 years and a character who really made life interesting.

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Earlier this week, on Monday, I had my annual physical and all is good with my health except my thyroid is now producing too much TSH so my medication needs to be reduced a bit which means a new prescription (I have 180 pills on hand due to a screw-up) and a follow-up check on the TSH level every 6-8 weeks for a while. Again, I will blame it on the aging process, as I have taken the same dose for 30+ years.

After my appointment, I stopped by Ben’s house and we went for a walk around his neighborhood during his lunch break. It is always nice to have that one-on-one time with him where we can talk without interruption.

When I got back home, I started laundry and packing for my trip to Stoughton.  Poor Frisco is upset again, wondering if he will be included in the plan. Since he doesn’t hear any more, I had a face to face conversation with him, telling him that all is okay - I hope he can read my body language.

Yesterday, I dropped Frisco off at Ben’s at 9:00 and hit the road. Since I had recently read a book called “Driftless” by David Rhodes - a story about the driftless geological area (not affected by the glaciers) that covers northeast Iowa, southeast Minnesota and southwest Wisconsin, I decided to take the scenic route. The scenery made the additional time worth the extra hour of travel. The road meanders through the beautiful forest-covered hillsides, many with rock walls facing the roadsideand several small towns. All through the Kickapoo Valley,  I saw cows and horses grazing in picturesque pastures with squiggly creeks winding their way through the valley floor.  Before I got to Richland Center, I took a detour through Boaz so I could go past ‘The Land’ where Mike and I and our kids had many wonderful camping outings with our contingent of Milwaukee friends.

The Scenic Route

Highway Q, heading toward The Land.

I arrived at Dawn’s and got setup in my room, we chatted a bit, and then I walked over to Pat’s house to say hello and to meet their two new kittens, Ally and Cass. They are rambunctious and cute little kittens.

Dawn and I sat up and talked and drank wine until 10:30 and then it was time for me to hit the sack.

This afternoon, I met my dear friend, Leslie at Deak’s Tavern for lunch and that was so nice to get together with her again. I think it’s been two years, at least.

Some of Dawn’s beautiful flowers.

Sunday, August 15, 2021

Sunday, August 15, 2021

I’ve got a lot of catching up to do.  Monday was the weirdest day for me.  I was up early and I decided to get some laundry going, so I put 2 loads in the washers at about 7:30. At 8:00, I went back to switch to dryers and realized that I had forgotten to push the START button and I was right back where I was at 7:30. I pushed the START buttons and came back at 8:30 and realized that I had only started one of the machines, apparently not holding the START button down hard enough. So…one load went to a dryer and the other got started on washing. Long story short - I was finished by 10:00.  

When I proceeded to get ready for my upcoming haircut appointment at 1:30. I checked my calendar and realized that my haircut appointment was actually at 10:00. I called Jeanell, apologized, and rescheduled for Thursday. 

As the day went on, I was really feeling ‘out of sorts’; stomach upset, feeling tired and wanted to do nothing more than be lazy and take a nap. I was supposed to pick the girls up after camp but Jill said that she could do it, so I was off the hook on that one.  I proceeded to be lazy the rest of the day and woke up feeling much more clear headed and energetic on Tuesday.

The week went on with a couple of appointments and I accomplished a few things around the apartment like hanging pictures, doing laundry, and some cleaning. Mavis and I met for a late lunch at Yankee Doodle Tavern on Thursday and we had a really enjoyable visit.

Frisco and I managed to walk along the Nine Mile Creek from two different access points on Saturday and Sunday. It is a really beautiful trail with lots of sandbars with quick moving water where Frisco could walk in and slurp.  At one point, from the 112th & Queen access, there is a small bridge crossing the creek and there was a family with two little kids playing in the water.  Going east from that access gets you to the Minnesota River and a friendly couple told me that there are also trails all along the river.  Today, we accessed the trail from Moir Park and walked a 1.5 mile stretch along that section. It is beautiful and only a short distance from my new home.

The marsh is really dry - the entire state is under drought conditions. I did see a couple of Great Snowy Egrets at the marsh and a Bald Eagle soaring through the sky.

There was a group of about 50 people heading to the creek for a Baptism this morning.  I was invited to join them, but continued on with my walk instead.

The rest of my day was spent grooming Frisco and starting to get things organized for my trip to Stoughton next week. I’m really looking forward to seeing Pat and Tracey again, meeting their new kittens, connecting with friends and family, and attending my 55-year class reunion. It should be a good week!

Saturday, August 7, 2021

Saturday, August 7, 2021

We are having a much needed rainy Saturday morning. The air smells clean and fresh and the grass, plants, and trees are soaking it all in. It is lovely!

Now to reconstruct my week’s highlights. Norah and Camille had a sleepover on Tuesday night after being with Granny and Poppa for the previous two nights.  He dropped them off at my place and we walked to the school playground for a starter, giving them an opportunity to burn off some energy.  Of course, they were interested in makeup and here is the result of that afternoon activity.

Of course, sleeping together in my bed (I slept on the couch) they couldn’t keep their hands off each other, so the wrestling and giggling started. We read and I rubbed their back and that settled them in for the night.

Wednesday’s activity was a trip to the Richardson Nature Center where we had some lunch, hiked the trails, explored the nature center, and played.  I got them back home by about 5:00 and had a nice, quiet evening by myself after that.

Yesterday, I drove to Osseo, WI and met my cousins JoAnne and Jonnie for lunch. It was a 2-hour drive for each of us, coming from opposite directions and meeting in the middle.  We had lunch at the Norske Nook, known for their Norwegian foods, bakery, and pies.  Jo was the only one who ordered traditional and she had a lefsa wrap with Norwegian meatballs. I had fish fry and Jonnie had shrimp. I brought a piece of apple lingonberry pie home for dinner - it was yummy!

We went through photos that Jonnie brought, as they are still going through Fran’s boxes of pictures. It was a great visit - so nice to stay in touch!