3 Crazy Weekends

Milw zoo - elephants, Mama and Little Chick

I haven’t been very good about updating the blog the last few weeks, but we’ve been home so little since mid-July!

July 20th was Papa’s 35th class reunion weekend.  We were fortunate that his sister and brother-in-law live in the same hometown so we were able to stay with them.  In fact, Papa pretty much dropped Little Chick and I off and we saw very little of him for the next 36 hours.

35th class reunion - friends

Papa went to the night-before get-together by himself on Friday night to see some of the classmates.  We were all up bright and early Saturday morning, but then he was off to play golf with a small group of them – and met up with others afterwards.  He also has friends in Platteville that were not in his class, so he made a point to see a few of them – including one of his groomsmen that we get to see only about every 5 years or so.

You already got to see the adorable picture of Little Chick and Piper, the Great Dane.  They also have two little dogs, so we didn’t miss Finley much those few days – he stayed with his former mama for the weekend.

Saturday evening we had a nice dinner at the Elks Lodge in town while Little Chick stayed with her aunt and uncle.

35th class reunion - Platteville High School

We honestly were ready to leave by 9pm but then they wanted to take a group picture of those that were still left … and we found more people to talk to, so our early-to-bed turned into 11pm instead.

We learned on that trip that our daughter is a squirmy sleeper, she’s not fond of going to bed without her parents (as she told her auntie “you’re not Mama”) and nap-time is difficult when you’re traveling.  But that was just the first weekend…

The next weekend we traveled to the Milwaukee area.   We spent the first part of the weekend helping Grandma fix up a flower bed and clean out part of her pantry.  We stayed until Monday and then took Little Chick and Grandma N to the zoo.  It was great weather – mid 70° temps. Much better that the super-hot and humid we had a few weeks earlier.

Milwaukee zoo with Little Chick, Papa and Grandma

This wasn’t her first trip to the zoo.  She got to go to the one in Naples last February, but she’s older now, knows more animals, and we were much more rested versus trying to go to the zoo the day after we arrived in Florida.  Little Chick had a great time!  She didn’t seem overly interested in the primates and kept pushing us to go see the “yawin”s (lions).

Milwaukee zoo - elephants, Mama and Little Chick

She really liked the elephants, all the big felines, and the “pennin”s (penguins).  Some animals were a little hard to see and some were new to her so she didn’t know what to think of them.

Milwaukee zoo - hippo

The hippo was a cross between fascinating and scary.  We went back to him at least four times – but only for a short time.  Little Chick had to move away after a few minutes.  One of the times we were watching him, he opened his jaws to the full extent in a big yawn.  I wish we had gotten that on camera – it was incredible.

After three more days of running around, lots of fresh air and little sleep, our vehicle was rather quiet on the way home … at least in the back seat.

Milwaukee zoo - the ride home

We were home for TWO FULL DAYS … so I could get some work done, and then we were off again for our annual Potato Lake camping trip.  We always go from Thursday through Sunday – it’s long enough for a nice getaway, but we’re always glad to get home.

This is the third year that Little Chick has gone, but I’m willing to bet she doesn’t remember the first two because she was so little.  I was excited to see her go fishing for the first time.

Potato Lake - off to go fishing

We borrowed a small life jacket for her and I purchased the shortest fishing rod I could find that didn’t have a reel attached.  She’d just play with the reel and get it all tangled so we opted to tie fishing line directly to the pole to help prevent problems – at least for a year or two.

Potato Lake - first fish

It didn’t take long and she had her first fish!  Isn’t he cute?  No, we did not keep him.  He went back to become a bigger fish – or fish bait for the large muskies that are in these waters.

She didn’t do as much fishing as I thought she might.  But I suppose when you’re only 2 1/2 it gets old fast.  Especially when you don’t catch any for a while.

Potato Lake - bored with fishing already

See?  She’s bored already.  She and Papa went a couple of times but only ended up catching a total of 8 fish.  Not a lot.  Fishing was rough for the big kids too.  The older girls (~8-9) had a tough time catching little bass and crappies.  Usually they’re pulling them in left and right.  And the bigger “kids” (guys) caught a total of 2 Northern and 1 Muskie (maybe there were a couple of large-mouth bass in there too)..  Not much for 4 days of fishing.

Everyone kept asking Little Chick if she wanted to touch the fish they caught.  Check out this expression.  “Are you crazy?”

Potato Lake - northern pike

Our Potato Lake weekends always start out slow – just a couple of families, but by the time Friday night rolls around we usually have around 20+ people there.  This year due to other commitments we “only” had 17.  Still it’s quite the crew.  We’ve known all these people for anywhere between 5 to 23 years.  It’s a great bunch and we always have a wonderful time.

Just because our friend Pat was being a snot, here’s a goofy picture of him 🙂

Potato Lake - our friend Pat

The weather was absolutely perfect this year.  Some years it’s pretty hot – it is August after all, but this year was in the lower-to-mid 70’s all weekend.  Most years it seems like it rains at least one day – if not just overnight, but we had perfectly dry weather this year too.  The nights were cool – perfect for sitting around the campfire.  Little Chick and I slept together in the camper and used the electric blanket (yeah, we’re “roughing it”) the last night – but it was in the lower 50’s/upper 40’s that night!  Even the bugs weren’t too bad this year.

We had one little incident on Saturday evening.  Little Chick wanted to go for a walk, which I thought would be a good idea; wear off some energy before bedtime.  The walk turned into running with Mama.  She went barreling down the sloped road and I thought she might wipe out.  She didn’t … until we got to a flat surface closer to the campground that had loose gravel on the pavement.  Skinned up her nose pretty good and one knee just a little.  This is a picture Papa snapped on the way home on Sunday.  One dirty, grumpy and very tired little girl.

Potato Lake - dirty, grumpy and tired

It wasn’t long after this picture was taken she finally succumbed to sleep.  Finley, on the other hand, slept the whole way home.  They were both rather sedate and cuddly yesterday.

I’m looking forward to some “normal” days at home for a while…

One Reply to “3 Crazy Weekends”

  1. It looks like she had an wonderful time back then.
    It’s always great spend some QT with families and do some adventure.
    As a fishing lover my alltime fav activity is fishing. Despite having a smaller rod you guys catch pretty big fish.
    Congrats on that 🙂

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