Thursday, September 14, 2017

August 16-21, 2017 Cumberland, WI

After returning to Cumberland, Dave and I drove to Amery, WI, about 30 miles south, to spend the evening visiting with sailing friends.  We met Nancy and Mike Magnine in St Mary’s, GA last summer.  They sailed from GA, to the Bahamas and down the Caribbean to Grenada and left their boat there for the summer.  We spent about 6 hours talking about their experience and our boats.  Great to see them again. 

We hung out with family Thursday and Friday.  Dave’s brother, Dean, arrived in Cumberland Thursday night.  On Friday, all of Dave’s family drove to Stone Lake, WI to eat at the Pine Ridge Fish Fry.  Every Friday night, they have a fish fry served family style.  It was delicious.  You had a choice of fried or grilled fish and a baked potato vs french fries.  That came out in baskets.  They also served fried chicken, coleslaw, fried bread and a free glass of wine.  It was about an hour’s drive from Cumberland, but worth the drive.  The family consisted of Alice, Dave’s brother Dean, sister Debbie, her “spice” Randy, her son David and his “spice” Cindy, Dave, Peter and me. 
Alice, Debbie, Randy, Cindy, Dave, Pete, Dean, David

Dave, Mary, Pete (may end up being our Christmas picture)

top-Randy, Dean, David, middle-Dave, Debbie, Cindy, bottom-Mary, Pete, Alice
Saturday was Alice’s 86th birthday.  Debbie made a white cake with red food coloring.  She put chocolate chips in the mix.  Then she frosted it with green watermelon flavored frosting.  It looked like a slice of watermelon. 

Alice's door when we arrived on her birthday
Alice and Dave with Alice's birthday present, a toaster oven.  we also brought her a conch shell horn from the Bahamas, but forgot to take any pictures or videos of her blowing it.

Debbie and Randy
David and Debbie

Pete taking requests
Alice and Debbie with her cake
 About 4:00, we left for Minneapolis.  We spent the evening with Joe and Erin Clausen.  They made pork loin for us at their home.  On Sunday, we met our niece, Dena and 2 of her kids, Malachi and Julianna, at 3rd Lair, a skate board park.  Malachi will be competing at the state fair on his skate board and was practicing.
Malachi, Dave, Dena, Julianna, Pete
We met my brother, Jerry, and his wife, Barb, for breakfast before heading to the airport on Monday.  We watched the full eclipse of the sun on the TV at the airport. 
Mary, Pete, Dave saying good-bye
We had a great 3 weeks visiting family and friends.  Seemed strange not to go to Rapid City this summer, but we didn't miss the drive across the state of South Dakota.  And having Pete with us for 10 days made it a special vacation. 

August 8-16, 2017 Moose Lake, MN and Sand Lake

On Tuesday Aug 8, we drove to Cumberland, WI and arrived early afternoon. We picked up Alice, Dave’s mother, stopped at Louie’s meat market to pick up bratwursts, etc.  Then we headed to Moose Lake, MN to stay at a cabin on Sand Lake, MN. 

My friend, Stephanie Larson Stec, owns a cabin there.  It has been in her family for years.  She has been doing some work to it this summer.  We offered to help her if we could stay at the cabin.  It was built in the early 1900’s and her father bought it in 1950.  It was a log cabin with a fireplace.  We were here over 30 years ago while Stephanie and I were in dental school together.

Alice with view of the cabin from the road
rainy day view of Sand Lake when we arrived at cabin

Alice loved the cabin

 Stephanie joined us on Wed, Aug 9.  She, Dave and I went to work (mostly Dave and Stephanie).  We let Alice just enjoy the cabin.   They also have a small cabin across the road that has electricity, but no bathroom.  On Friday, we enjoyed a ride around the lake on the pontoon boat.  It ended up being a nice afternoon after a couple days of rain.  We stopped at the Moose Lake country club with the pontoon and enjoyed drinks on the deck.
Mary, Stephanie, Alice on Sand Lake

Steph, Alice and Mary at the country club

Dave and Steph with Buddy

early morning fog on Sand Lake

early morning light in the cabin

gotta love a man in the kitchen

enjoying the deck

Dave, Alice and Steph
awesome fire everyday

On Saturday, I drove into Minneapolis/St Paul.  I met a couple of my dental school classmates in St Paul, Chris Swanson at Tammy Meister and Chris Shirber’s home.  Always great to see them.  I picked up our son, Peter, at the airport about 2:30 and we headed back to the cabin.  He was able to join us for 10 days.  On the way back to the cabin, we stopped in Wyoming, MN to pick up Stephanie’s 2 son’s, Andrew and Tobie.  We had a fun night together.
Mary, Tammy Meister, Chris Swanson

Sunday, I drove to the neighboring town for church in Sturgeon Lake.  When I returned, we all went into Moose Lake for breakfast at the local diner, Art’s cafe.  I highly recommend it.  We spent the day playing games.  And Pete pulled out his guitar and sang for us.  Really miss hearing him sing in our kitchen.  Steph’s family left late afternoon.  One son had to work and one was starting soccer practice along with work.  Her husband, Ed, and daughter, Hannah, were on a vacation together in Indonesia. 
Pete and Alice at Art's Cafe

Pete's serenade
Andy, Steph and Tobie

Hannah and Ed Stec
back Andy, Steph, Tobie, Alice, Pete, front Mary and Dave
 On Monday, after working on a few more projects, we took the pontoon around the lake and ended up at the golf course again.  Earlier this year, we thought we might go to Maine this summer and had asked Alice to meet us there.  Now that we don’t plan to make it, we had frozen lobster tails flown to Alice’s.  We had a great lobster dinner tonight.  We have been enjoying the local corn on the cob, too. 
Steph's dock looking up at the cabin

Dave, Alice, Pete
Mary and Dave enjoying being chauffeured

Mary and Pete enjoying Bloody Mary's with a beer chaser at the yacht club

Maine lobster in MN
On Tuesday, we had to  make sure the golf cart was working properly.  The property is the fifth cabin down a dead end road past the golf course.  Alice took it for a cruise first.  Then Pete and I headed to the golf course and enjoyed their bloody Mary’s on the deck. 
Alice taking Pete for a spin
On Wednesday, we closed up the cabins and headed into town to have breakfast at Art’s again.  Since we were only 40 miles from Duluth, we drove into town and spent about an hour at Canal park.  There is a light house and a long channel that ships come through and under the lift bridge.  We timed our visit perfect to catch a ship coming through.
Mary, Pete, Dave and Alice leaving the cabin

ship passing under the lift bridge in Duluth, MN

Pete in Duluth
Pete, Dave and Alice enjoying a windy day

After leaving Duluth, we headed back to Cumberland, WI.  Pete works for a private camp ground selling memberships for RV camping (besides having his own Irish band).  Their company had a property on the St Croix River, which is the MN/WI border.   We took the back roads and checked it out.  Beautiful place.

We really enjoyed our time at Stephanie's cabin.  We even told her to line up some things for next year.  Thank you so much, Stephanie!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

July 31-August 7, 2017 week in South Dakota

birthday picture before leaving the marina

Our flights originated in Brunswick, GA.  We were at the airport early and were able to visit with the ticket agent.  We didn’t have any seat assignments, even though we booked the flights in April or May.  Dave and the ticket agent said it was because I booked through Travelocity.  Hmmm.  He could give us seats for this flight, but not the Atlanta to Minneapolis flight.  We had to see the gate agent in Atlanta, but this guy put in a request for us.  We only had an hour layover, so we figured we’d be lucky if we had a seat.  Dave hates being at the back of the plane by the bathroom.  If you are on the isle, everyone stands in line with heat radiating off of their back side.  So he says. 

When we landed in Atlanta, our Delta phone apps showed that we had seats assigned.  Cool!  Well, our buddy in Brunswick got us seats in “comfort plus”.  Great selection of snacks, including bananas, selection of about 20 movies on our own screen, and maybe free drinks.  I didn’t catch that, which was a good thing.  Those of you that travel a lot probably think this was no big deal, but we loved it.

We arrived in Minneapolis/St Paul and rented a car at the airport in the late afternoon.  We met Dave’s niece, Dena, and her three kids for dinner.  Always fun to see them and see how much they are growing and changing.  We don’t see them enough.  For those of you who know Dena, her cancer is in remission and she’s doing great.  Dena supplied a cake for us to celebrate Dave’s birthday.  Happy Birthday Dave!!  Bring on the Social Security checks!
Dave, Dena, Julianna
Malachi and Mateo (aka John Belushi)
Julianna, Malachi, Mateo, Dena

After dinner, we drove to Maple Lake, MN to spend the evening with my cousins Vern and Ruth Schaefer at their lake home.  My sister, Beverly, met us there, too.  We made it just in time for a pontoon ride on their lake with a fun rum drink in hand. 
Vern and Ruth Schaefer, Beverly Krause
view of the lake from their cabin

On Tuesday, August 1, Bev and I drove to Aberdeen, SD together and let Dave have some alone time.  We arrived at our sister, Janice and Jim Moore’s house before dinner.  Always nice to return there.  They make everyone feel welcome.
Janice, Mary and Beverly

Janice and Jim their home on the market, so they had a showing Wednesday morning.  We picked up the house and headed out for breakfast.  We had wonderful ribeye steaks for dinner.  Jim has made a tradition of grilling juicy South Dakota ribeye steaks for us when we return.  That’s something we don’t get anywhere else.  Thanks, Jim.

We played cards and triominoes and had a fun night.  We decided to leave our mess and clean up in the morning.  Well, in the morning, we found out about 9:00 am that the house showing was TODAY at 10:00 and not yesterday.  So we all scurried around helping clean up and headed out for breakfast again. 

Friday, our brother, Don from Pierre, SD arrived with his two grandchildren, Garrett and Claire Crawford.  They had been spending the week with him.  They returned to Aberdeen and their parents, Heidi and Glen Crawford.  We had fun playing croquet, badminton, football, and cribbage with everyone.  Then we had about 12 family and friends at their home for dinner. 

Claire holding her own in cribbage
Saturday, our other brother, Jerry and Barb from Minneapolis, arrived.  That night we had about 20 people for dinner with extended family.  Great time.

On Sunday, all the siblings and relatives headed to Faulkton, SD.  Our mother’s last living sibling, Julie Bowar, was celebrating her 90th birthday.  She also has one sister-in-law, Maylou Oakley, who was also there.  We were able to visit with many of our relatives all afternoon.  It was such a nice gathering.  18 of the 31 first cousins of my generation were present.  The only family of a sibling not represented were the ones that live in California.
Julie and Maylou with my generation of first cousins
Julie Bowar's family
Julie Bowar and Maylou Schaefer Oakley
siblings Don, Janice, Mary, Beverly, Jerry

After leaving the celebration, we stopped downtown Faulkton to check out their carousel.  It has been there for many years and runs on 2 nights a week.  So several of us thought we should go for a ride.  It was my sister Bev’s birthday.  So of course we had to get a picture of her and post it on Facebook.  Happy Birthday, Bev.  
Happy Birthday Bev
Faulkton carousel

On Monday, we drove to Watertown and visited our long time friends, Tom and Lesa Franken.  We met almost 40 years ago in Germany while Tom and Dave were in the Air Force.  We will both be celebrating our 40th wedding anniversaries this year.  They were married the day before us in Brookings, SD.  Then all 4 of us had a 2 year honeymoon in Germany.
Tom and Lesa Franken with Dave and Mary

That ends our SD tour.  We saw a lot of people in a short time, but we always wish for more.

beautiful SD sunset on the prairie