Monday September 21- We knew we had to get up early so our inner alarm clock took over. We both were up before our 5:30 a.m. alarm went off. Since the dogs weren't around less things to take care of. We were on our way to Seth's at 6:15 a.m. We couldn't have ordered any better weather. This trip is courtesy of our son Seth and his wife Katie. We went just for the fun. We drove to our hotel which is within walking distance of the United Center. We grabbed a taxi and went downtown for a bit of shopping. Seth took us to the new Blackhawks Store. We didn't buy anything but did get this cool picture. We did some walking around downtown. It was great because the weather was so nice. I got to go to Garrett's Popcorn Store, now that's my kind of shopping. They have the best caramel corn ever.
Were went for lunch at PF Chang's......the kids love that place we had the lettuce wraps which were good we just aren't sure what was in it. We got a taxi back to the hotel and regrouped and took off for the United Center. It was a nice walk. Made a stop at Billy Goat's, a bar that is a tradition in Chicago.
If any of you watch Saturday night live you might recognize this. They did a sketch about this place cheeseburger, cheeseburger, pepsi, pepsi no coke. We just had drinks and then we continued to the United Center. We are on our way to the Chicago Blackhawks training camp. They have activities across from the United Center. They also have live music, games and lots to look at. First I noticed the Oscar Mayer Weiner mobile.....I love that, so had to get a picture of that.
Then we saw the Planter's Nut Mobile, have never seen that before. Along with that was Mr. Peanut, who can pass a up picture with him....not us.
Then Katie and I noticed something that peaked both of our attention...It was those clear orbs that you get in and run. You know like you are a gerbil. We both ran over to see if we could do it. I noticed that most everyone in line was a kid, but then a grown up jumped in so we knew we were going to get our turn. It was pretty funny, that's for sure.
Well it was getting late and we needed to get in line. When you get your tickets, which cost $5.00 its general admission. We got in line and luckily the doors opened early, before the scheduled 5 o'clock.
The draw to get there early is to get good seats and the first 10,000 get a Jonathan Toew's bobble head. Well good news we all got our bobble heads. Seth got us some really good seats. Then he told me the bad news, all the players I know aren't going to be playing. That was a little disappointing but it still was very exciting and fun.
The building was really full of excitement and everyone was ready to see there Blackhawks. They do everything like its a real game. I told my son since the team just split into 2 teams that we probably wouldn't see a fight. That was wrong, I guess the guys are still competing for positions, and are really working for them. We did see a fight and it was a good one.
After the 3 periods, they ended it up with a 5 minute 3 on 3 play. That was really exciting. After all the festivities we walked back to our hotel. We did make another stop at Billy Goat's. This time we had a sandwich, we shared a double hamborger which was really tastee. We decided to treat ourselves. We continued back to our hotel. Let me tell you after all that walking that was the most comfortable bed ever. What a fun day.
Tuesday September 22- We both slept really good. Jeff wasn't sure how he would sleep. He has gotten used to his bed and wasn't sure how the bed would be. It was wonderful. We got dressed and walked across the street to Eggperience. It was a really good restaurant. The food was super good, the help was very helpful and polite. To top it off the coffee....so good. We finished up and went back to load up and head toward home. We had to stop at Total Hockey to get everyone's skates sharpened. Then we stopped at an outlet mall. We did a little shopping and came on home. We talked to the kids for awhile then we had to go by and pick up the dogs at Justin's. You would think we had been gone for a month. It's nice to be missed. We really had a wonderful time with Seth and Katie. It's good to be home. Funny how that rig feels so comfortable to us. It's home.
Wednesday September 23- It felt good to sleep in our own bed. We found out that Ashton will be skating out with the Cedar Rapids Roughriders for there opening game on Saturday. That's exciting because we had been looking forward to the game anyway. Now its going to be extra special. Good news all around. We went in to town today to pick up some tickets. There is a concert coming that we want to see. It's going to be in the Paramount Theater which is something special to see. The concert is The Fab Four, a tribute band of the Beatles. We made a few stops before heading back. It's so easy to piddle a day away.
Thursday September 24- Today was free pancake day at Perkins. They give you free pancakes and ask that you donate to a children's fund. Well we can do that. The pancakes were good as usual.
Friday September 25-Big weekend.....Judy is coming up to join us. She got up here before noon. Her and I went shopping. We used to do that quite a bit. We went to one of our favorite places, Tanger Outlets in Willimsburg. We found some really good bargains we couldn't live without. We came back home and fixed some supper. Then we went into Cedar Rapids to meet everyone at the movie theater. We went to see Everest in 3-D. The movie was really good the theater was really not. What's with the cleaning people? The just don't take care of the place. That will be the last time we go there. There are plenty of really nice theaters around here. We will be using them. Another thing was the amount of money they charged. It was an expensive movie. We usually attend the movie at a discounted time. Not only is it a better deal the place is usually not as busy. But we had great company. It was a real fun day and night.
Saturday September 25- After cleaning the shower house Jeff had a great campfire going. We sat outside and enjoyed our coffee. It is another great fall day, cooler temperatures and blue sky.
Judy and I went on a nice long walk to the other side of the park. We really just enjoyed the day outside. We had lunch here. Then we went to town, we had a hockey game to attend. The home opener of the Roughriders. We left early to get some supper and I was called that my new glasses were in. We picked up my glasses, ate and then headed to the Stable...(ice arena). Ashton was really excited about being able to skate out with the players. We were excited to watch him.
He had quite the cheering section to watch him. I think we had 10 people there. The place was really full and the excitement was electric. It was a great game to watch and the Rough Riders pulled out a victory. One of the best games we have been to.
After the victory they let people on the ice to skate with the players. Ashton wanted to do that so we watched for a little while. Another thing they do here to bring in the families.
What a great night....had all my family there and my best friend. A really fun time. These games I will miss when we head south.
Sunday September 27- All of us here were slow to get started. Jeff made us another campfire to enjoy. We watched the campers start to pull out. Judy and I took another walk, a great day for that. When we got back we looked through pictures that Judy brought up. She had 2 grandkids graduate this year and I told her I would make them scrapbooks if she would get the pictures. I don't know I love to look at pictures, she had some old ones of us too. We have shared a lot of memories together. We were just sitting outside and I got a message on phone. A friend of Jeff and I's is traveling back from Minnesota and wanted to know if they could stop by for a visit. So of course we said yes. Judy left for home at about 3 o'clock, her usual time. We did some cleaning up and before we knew it her comes Robert and Diane Fairchild and his mother. It was nice to see them, it had been awhile. We sat and caught up with each others lives. He just retired about 3 months ago. They couldn't stay too long but it was sure nice of them to think of us. After they left we just had some supper and relaxed. Our sons both called to tell us about there hockey game. Seth had a couple goals and Justin got his first goal. We had thought about going to the game but since Robert had called we thought we could catch the next one. What a crazy busy weekend....it was super fun!!
Monday September 28- We both slept in a bit today. Monday's are kind of our cleaning days. We do some extra cleaning at the shower house. I got my walk in. I had to get some new tennis shoes because I wore my last ones out. We both got ready to go into Cedar Rapids. Jeff has a doctor appointment with an eyes, ears, nose and throat doctor. He has been having a lot of nose bleeds for no reason. Someone told him that you can get cauterized. So we went in to a new doctor. Again we were pleasantly surprised. They were friendly, prompt, and took care of the problem without any hassles. Next I went back to try and get my new glasses adjusted. There is definitely a problem. At first I was getting perturbed, they acted like I was crazy. Then they did some adjusting to get the angle right. They are no line bifocals but I have had them for years. I don't remember this problem with the other ones, just the first pair. Well I think they are better but I will wear them a bit to make sure. It's been really perfect Fall weather here. I needed to give Belle a haircut so I got that done today. We had to gather up stuff because tomorrow the road across the dam will be closed because they need to get a crane in there to replace a huge valve. They are in the process of draining the lake about 12 feet for some shore line restoration. The previous valve had froze up. We are spending the day in at the kids house.
Tuesday September 29- Up early to get out of here before 7:30 a.m. They are suppose to start the job. We headed to Seth's house. I had stuff I could do there. I used there washer and dryer. Then I got the kid's Christmas presents wrapped and hid. Jeff was gonna wash the truck and change the oil. It was rainy to start. We went for breakfast but that wasn't a good idea. It was a mom and pop place and they didn't have anything even halfway healthy. We learned that we will have to stay with what we know. When we got back from breakfast the weather has cleared up. Jeff got busy changing the oil and I worked on the blog. I had let it get away from me and had a lot of catching up to do. When the kids got home Jeff helped them put in a request for a vacation with the time share we had passed on to them. Jeff used to take care of all that and the kids weren't sure how to take care of that. We had received a phone call from the park manager telling us that the road will be closed again tomorrow. It seems they didn't get the job done. When we got back we let the campers know what was going on.
Wednesday September 30- It was really cold this morning it got down in the 40's last night, its slow to warm up. Since it was so cool out I worked inside on purging our stuff. I went through drawers and closets. We usually do that before we take off. We also have a very special occasion coming up. Our grand daughter is turning 5 on October 6th. Her party is on the 4th. I need to draw her cake out. She is a hard one to pick out what she wants. She keeps changing her mind. We think we have her pinned down with a decision. I got that done today. We also walked down to see what was going on with the work.
They have had wonderful weather to work in. I think they underestimated the size of the job. We went in to watch Hailey at her tumbling class, again a phone call that they hadn't finished the job. The road will be closed again tomorrow. It is closed from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. After that traffic can use the road. We had fun at Hailey's class, she is really into it and is very serious.
After class we gathered up Hailey's stuff because she was coming home with us. Mom and Dad have a job fair tomorrow so instead of picking her up from daycare tomorrow, we would get her for the whole day. She's fun to have around. She wanted grammy to paint her toes. She wanted papa to play memory and old maid with her. All very easy requests. We even got a couple potholders made.
Thursday October 1- Wow, cant believe its October already. Hailey and I went for a walk. She seems to notice everything around her. Another perfect day for a walk, and the company I had was wonderful.
The day seemed to really fly by. We had to go back to town because we needed to get Ashton to his hockey practice. They were still working on the road and it looks like tomorrow they will finally finish it up. We got Ashton a bite to eat before going to the rink. He did really well. I think his listening skills are improving. He used to have a big problem with that. We are very proud of him.
After practice we took them home. When there parents got home we took off for ours.
Friday October 2- I went for a walk this morning and I noticed something in the water....it looked like a shark but I know that isn't so. It's a muskie hunting for food.
The crowd was a bit small but the game was very big. I never saw so many penalty's. They had 2 people get ejected. There were lots of goals by the roughriders....yeah! They won 6-1.
Another great night with the family. Another victory for the Roughriders!!!!!
Saturday October 3- Oh boy its really cold this morning. After checking the shower house I came back and worked on the blog. We decided to go to town. Jeff has been waiting for the movie the Martian, and its finally here so here we go. Went for lunch first at Hurricanes. At the hockey game last night they handed out coupons, $10.00 off of $30.00. Our lunch started off a little scarey but when the food arrived our concerns were put to rest. Jeff had the mahi mahi tacos, I had a crispy chicken sandwich with homemade potatoe chips. All was excellent. We splurged with dessert. They had a salted caramel cheesecake. YUM that was really good. After eating we went to the movie theatre. This time we went to the Galaxy Theater, a lot cleaner. This was another 3-D moviIe. It was really awesome. Both of us liked the show. We came home and I got busy frosting Hailey's birthday cake and cupcakes. She picked a Shopkins cake, for any of you with young girls you will know what this is. She is just crazy about these things. I spent about 4 hours frosting the cake. I cleaned up the mess and headed to bed.
Sunday October 4-It's party day...I made us brunch before we went in. The party started at 1 o'clock but we went in a little early.
When we arrived the kids weren't there yet because they had stayed at there other grandparents house. I put the cake up on the counter thinking it was safe there. When nana and papa Ron showed up he decided to accidently put his hand in the cake.....needless to say I was a bit upset but I bit my tongue. I think I was the only one upset about it. Hailey didn't even notice so that's all that matters. The weather was a bit cloudy and cool. We were outside visiting. Then it was time to open presents. Hailey is so fun to watch open gifts because she absolutely loves every gift she gets.
After she opened all her gifts she wanted cake and ice cream. So we lit the candles and sang her Happy Birthday...I still cant believe she is 5. The cake, cupcakes and ice cream was very yummy.
After the cake everyone took part in playing Ashton's new game....pie face. I didn't participate but lots of others did. Pretty funny to watch that's for sure.
Everyone had to do some cleaning up, but they had fun. We left the party and stopped to pick up Jeff's prescription. Jeff had put a turkey breast in the crock pot this morning so when we walked in the door we could smell our yummy supper. It tasted as good as it smelled.
Happy Happy 5th Birthday Hailey Marlin......you always put a smile on our faces...we love you more!!