We had a great weekend! My husband had off on Friday so we spent the day doing errands and yard work which maybe doesn’t sound “fun” per se but definitely gave us a feeling of accomplishment at the end of the day. Plus we refueled with a very fun lunch that involved cheddar bacon fries!
On Saturday I got up early to chop veggies and whip up a dip–luckily there were so bleary eyed 5 AM and I have yet to consume any coffee accidents with the chef’s knife! We then packed up the baby, the dog and my dip and headed to Richland Center, WI. A 2 and a half hour trip–a real rural adventure as RC at 5500 residents is truly a small town and is not terribly close to any place of size. Jeff and I relish a road trip and this one was fun as he had never been to Richland Center nor had he ever been on the highway leading to it. I’ve been to RC countless times growing up as it is where my now deceased paternal grandparents lived. But I had not had occasion to return since my grandfather’s funeral 6 years ago. We passed through many small towns: Cross Plains, Mazomanie, Arena, Black Earth–which allowed us to play one of our favorite games as a couple: imagine living in said town as we pass through. We drive slowly and point out the ‘attractions’–“Babe that is the archery range you would go to!” (he would first of course have to take up archery).
The occasion for our return was my great-uncle’s 90th birthday party held at an assisted living facility. But it was more enjoyable than what it sounds–got to see lots of relatives who I don’t see often enough and many got to meet Miss Julia for the very first time. My great uncle reminds me so much of his brother (my late grandpa) as he has the same dry humor. Example? He took a look at me and my long maxi dress balanced out with very tall wedges and declared that he was happy to meet someone he felt confident he could beat in a foot race 😉 Anyway the food was excellent (we all brought something), my mom had baked 2 fantastic cakes–one was a lemon layer cake with layers of fresh blackberry filling which was life changingly delicious. The downside was only decaf coffee was available but it WAS a 90th birthday party 😉
After the party wrapped up we headed to my parents’ land which is just outside of town–it was once part of my grandparents’ farm. My parents have 93 acres so plenty to explore. What I like about it is the variety found in the acreage–hills and valleys, some pasture, some forest, a stream and the best part would be the tall sandstone rock formation that are nicknamed the ‘rattlesnake dens’ as local lore states thta they were once home to rattlesnakes but seriously the snakes have been gone for decades (if they ever existed). Some of the land is rented out to a local farmer so we had the surreal experience of pushing Julia in her stroller through waist high corn! We only explored for a short time as we all had a long journey home and it was pretty hot out. Jeff and I plan to return next spring when we have a less scheduled day. I also got to drive Jeff past my grandparents old house (my grandpa and great-grandpa built it themselves!). It is under new non-family ownership so it was simply a drive by–one unique feature is that it is located on a hill and in the valley below is a picturesque white county church with a small cemetary. My grandparents are now buried in that cemetary and what was surreal is that during their burial I could look up from their grave and see the house they spent 50 years in perched above us on the hill.
Sunday was a ‘catch up’ day. We had church in the morning which was bittersweet as we learned thta the assistant pastor who we are incredibly fond of, is leaving. He has been appointed a chair at Southern Methodist University in Dallas which is incredib;y prestigious and well deserved but we will miss him terribly. After church we did more yard work–it is embarrassing how many lawn bags we have filled up!!! We also did lots of other things not particularly blog worthy–washed the dog, did laundry together, etc. Jeff and I are a great team!