So, I’m back home after two plus months of traveling, and was it ever busy. I’ll give you a rundown, but it’s the special moments I really want to share.
Buckle your seatbelt, here we go…I flew into Colorado on April 29th and was picked up by my husband, Dan, who had driven there two weeks earlier. We spent a couple of days with my stepdaughter and family. Next stop was Shawano, Wisconsin for one night with more family, the Murdock’s (not blood-related, but we love them as if they were), then to Gladstone, Michigan for three nights with my sister-in-law, Bev, and her husband, Steve. Next stop was Newaygo, Michigan, where we stayed one night with Jack, a dear old family friend. Then headed to Brunswick, Ohio for my stepdaughter, Jessica’s, college graduation, which you can read about in my blogged posted 5/19/16, titled From Tragedy to Triumph. After a week we headed back to Escanaba, Michigan. However, while in Ohio I picked up a virus, and with a temp of 101.5 I slept for over ten hours straight while Dan drove us to Escanaba. I think he was silently rejoicing that he had many hours of quiet after a busy week of visiting…lol. When we got to Escanaba, he visited with his brother, Joe, and sister, Bev. Since it was only one night we camped at Walmart before heading back to Shawano, Wisconsin. We spent a week in Shawano, then back to Escanaba for a week, back to Shawano a week, back to Escanaba for a week, then Shawano for a week, and then wrapped up our trip back in Colorado……whew, are you tired yet? After three days in Milliken, Colorado, I was back on a plane heading home. But with all that driving, packing, and unpacking, hugs and laughs, some highlights shine in my mind.
During our time in Michigan (back and forth), there were the nights of laughing over card games with my sister-in-law, Bev, and her husband, Steve. If you’ve never played “Buffoon” or “Sevens” you should give them a go…so much fun. We parked and set up our pop-up camper on our property that sits on the Escanaba River since we’d be back and forth over the next few months. We had great visits with Dan’s cousins Tim and Tom Arbour, along with a couple of their boys, who came up to stay on their river property for Memorial weekend. Then enjoyed a big family BBQ at Bev and Steve’s for the holiday. Back on the property, Dan and I staked out where our future cabin will go…not an easy thing to do. There were time I simply watched Dan and his brother, Joe, interact over what to do and not do for the building process. More than once we had a deer watching Dan drawknife logs on our property…literally twenty feet away. We went with Bev and Steve up to Munice, Michigan for the best pasties ever at Muldoon’s Pasties & Gifts, took a stroll on the beach of Lake Superior where there are balls of weeds (I guess) scattered about the beach. They look like balls of yarn…amazing what Mother Nature creates for us to enjoy. We ended the day stopping at a couple of water falls…amazing. There was one day Dan and I drove to Crystal Falls, Michigan where they have a Catholic church built in 1890…a thing of beauty still. At lunch we ate at Barb’s Café in Florence, Wisconsin on our way back to the property…such good food.
While in Wisconsin, we drove to Appleton to meet Dan’s cousins, Geri Petersen, Geralyn Budde, and her husband, Dan. Visiting through memory lane filled with lots of laughs, along with a few tears over lost lives. Another stop in Appleton, for a visit with Dan’s oldest sister, Maryanne, and her husband, John. Back in Shawano, my Murdock family took us to the Sun Drop Museum. This soda pop is only distributed in Wisconsin. If you ever get to Shawano, Wisconsin, stop for a visit, it’s free and worth the time. They even have a flavor tasting room…so many different ones…loved it. I watched Jen Murdock’s three girls play their last soccer games of the season (only one child, Jordon, got a bad bonk on the head). Two of her daughters played against each other while the youngest played in the field next door…it was so much fun going from one game to the other. There was the Flea Market to visit filled with amazing antiques and goodies. Not to mention the huge Green Bay Farmer’s Market where Dan’s cousin, Tom Arbour, had a booth for his Chiropractic practice. Another day I watched silage mounding for cattle feed…that’s quite a process. We watched goose banding where they corral the geese into a large pen. Each goose is checked for sex and age (mature/immature) and banded accordingly…it’s quite a process too. There was the trip to the strawberry fields where we drove through a town called Embarrass…had to get a shot of that town sign. There was the morning I went off by myself to Main Street in Shawano and spent a couple of hours visiting with the owner, Cindy Van Belkon, of Anew Tea Emporium. If you ever get a chance, please stop by…she is awesome, and so is her store. It’s not just teas; she has wine, olive oils, balsamic vinegar and more. Then there were the times spent watching Trevor and Jen’s house building project (the main reason for us being in Shawano).
Of course, what would a traveling vacation be without mishaps…we had another trailer tire blow…which, mind you, is so powerful that it rips the fender right off and sends it sailing down the road…scaring the you-know-what out of me. We took two wrong turns heading back to Colorado from Wisconsin. Who manages those highway signs anyhow (insert frustrated face here). But I’ve saved the best for last, so here it is…the morning we were going goose banding, I felt something in my rubber boot. Mind you we had to get up at 4:30 am for this experience, so I wasn’t quite awake. Anyhow, I put my hand in my boot and yelped as my fingers came in contact with something quite swishy and mushy…YUCK!!! Once I recovered, I was able to pound my boot enough to have a tree frog pop out. Yes, that is the little guy there in the photo. He usually is around the outdoor shower we use while staying at Todd Murdock’s…yes, an outdoor shower where you not only enjoy the fresh air while you suds up, but you get to look over acres of beautiful land. Well, I hope you enjoyed my journey; it was a very adventurous time. I’ll post other photos on Facebook as time allows.
So, until my next blog, check your boots my friends…you never know what might be lurking there.