Monday, October 22, 2007

Eli has a friend

When we visited Touch the Earth Farm on the trip Eli and Jules really bonded. Eli also fell in love with one of Jules' Pokemon toys. Imagine her surprise and delight when Jules decided to send her the Pokemon and a pretty dress to wear! Thank you Julia! Plusle hasn't left Eli's side since she arrived.

Saturday, October 20, 2007


Since arriving home we have been enjoying the orchard tremendously. We have a bumper crop of apples this year and we have been eating, baking, and pressing apples. The cider is heavenly.

The cows always take notice when we visit the orchard. Yum!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Homeward Bound

We took five days to leisurely drive home from Minneapolis. Cashing in on the rest of our credit card rewards, we stayed in nice hotels along the way for free!

Here are some photos of our last night, ending the trip as it began with Beth and Emma six weeks before at the Courtyard in Amarillo, TX.

Once again we ate at Joe's Crab Shack, where Eliza got to paint a crab again and really wished that Emma was there with her.

And this time I even managed to get a photo of the Texas shaped waffle! We never saw anything like this in any of the other 19 states we visited. That's Texas for you! Sorry it was upside down on the plate--I guess if I really wanted to I could flip it but I'm not going to.

We returned home on a Monday afternoon and when we passed the school near our house the odometer read 6,292 miles. Now that's an education!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Lovely Minneapolis

As I write this a month later, I consider our time in Minneapolis as the perfect ending to a great journey. Both of my sisters live in fair Mpls but only one of them was home when we visited. Although I was sad not to see Mik and Mac while we were there, it was also our good fortune that she was away because we were able to stay in her apartment just a block away from the Dunks (sister Ali and brother in law Rob, cousins Alex and Gracie). I have a lot of photos from this time but for once those aren't as important as what actually happened, which was a whole lot of Not Much. We spent ten days in Mik's apartment, usually joining the Dunks in the evening but not always. They have busy lives and we were definitely a disruption, but our time together was wonderful. We caught the zoo and the science museum and IKEA and watched lots of movies at home. For me, our time in Mpls was very valuable because I was able to slow waaaaaay down and spend a lot of time just thinking, being, and processing everything that had come before. I gained some insights into what I needed and wanted to do when I returned home and by the time we left all three of us were centered and ready to return. I'll always have fond memories of my morning dash out for Caribou coffee while the kids watched videos in the apartment and the late night movie watching at the Dunks. An unremarkable, quite remarkable time.

This here is something that only happens to me and my sister. On our first night we tried to open a bottle of wine and the whole neck broke off! We had to strain it through the coffee strainer to drink it (you didn't think we would pour it down the drain, did you?)

The girls got along pretty well, although Eli was more interested in her big cousin Alex than in playing with Gracie, who is only 16 days older.

The boys had a good time comparing their Photo Booth creations.

A rare photo op where the whole gang was together.

Museum visit. It was 89 degrees that day and two days later it was in the low 50's. Ahh, the Midwest.