Saturday, July 18, 2015

Travis Makes Me A Better Person


Sometimes, I judge a situation before I know anything about it. For Travis' family vacation, a family friend came up half way through our family vacation. I wish I could say I welcomed her with open arms, but I didn't. 

As we went to bed that night, Travis mentioned, "You weren't being very nice. You weren't being mean either." I asked him what he meant, and he told me that there was something she mentioned that usually in a conversation I would bring up, but because it wasn't the ideal situation, it was different. "You don't know what she is going through..."

That brought up a point that made me think. So with the idea from Travis, I went and found her before she headed to bed that night. I told her how glad I was that she was there with us. I gave her a hug and she commented on how "sweet" I was. Later on, I found out that her parents died when she was younger and she looked to Trav's family as her part of her own. I believe she was a little depressed in life, because she really missed her own kids, and she was probably hoping that our family could make her feel somewhat better. Travis was right; I didn't know what she was going through. The remanding of the week, she seemed like she had a good time.

A couple of weeks later, we heard that this friend passed away. I'm glad Travis told me to go and tell her that I was glad that she was was there. Maybe that gave her some sort of comfort and it was something that she might have needed to hear that at that point in her life.


Friday, July 17, 2015

Up North 2015: Getting Lost, Meeting a Bear, Getting Stranded...

Our trip up North was a memorial one to say the least. We left early the day before in hopes to getting half way there, and then get a hotel. We were supposed to take the normal travel route that we take to Indiana, but instead we missed a turn. We thought that it would take us to get back on route, but once we seriously started getting on back roads, we questioned where we were at. Not thinking, we saw a couple signs for "Ferry" with an arrow. We thought that was the town name, until our GPS stated, "Take ferry" as we made the last turn to see a literal ferry in front of us.



Are you kidding me?! We went down the road a little further and pulled into a farm to ask where the closest bridge was. Thankfully, they were sweet guys who were willing to help. It went from "take the ferry" to as they speed dialed the number to the ferry place, "naw man, the ferry broke" (in their southern accents). Missing one turn turned into taking us 1.5 hours out of our way! The route was called the "sceneic route", but there wasn't much to see. As soon as we crossed the Mississippi River, we broke out in cheers. We didn't get to go as far as we wanted, only because we couldn't have missed the Cavaliers play. Although, with the outcome of the game, we could have missed it.




The next day we were on the road again. This time we were on track. We planned to meet up with my aunt Meg at a little place called Cheteck. While we were waiting, we ate at the BEST German restaurant EVER.


The owner is from Germany. If I remember correctly, to become a "sausage maker" in Germany, you have to attend an academy for 5 years. For graduation, you have to cook for a couple of people, if one person does not like what you make, you would have to start school all over again. Afterwards, we finally arrived at my aunt and uncle's friends house who we were staying at, where we met up with my parents, Brittany, my uncle David, and my cousin Matt {who I call Matty, regardless if he likes it or not}. 
 






The next morning, I woke up knowing that Travis went to go on the dock to start fishing early. I got out of bed, and before I went outside, I looked at my aunt and uncle's bear rug {that was at their friends house}, and I wondered what it would be like to "touch the bear." I don't know why I didn't touch the bear rug at that point, probably because my ADD kicked in, and I headed out the door. I was half way down the trail from meeting my sister and Travis while they fished, and half way from the house. I heard a loud crash to my left, and about 30 yards away, there was a bear. A live BEAR. I froze, trying to remember what I needed to do after watching a bear attack show on tv. I just looked down at my sister and Travis. Travis wasn't paying attention and all I could do was point in the direction of the bear and tell my sister, "Bear! Bear! Bear!" I really don't know what else was going through my mind at this point except I was worried that the bear might pay them a little visit. It's not fun meeting something where you are not the top of the food chain anymore.


Apparently, in case of meeting a bear, you are supposed to talk to them. I instead, walked {faster than my normal pace, which is saying a lot} back to the house (hoping to redirect the bear in my direction rather than having the bear meet my husband and my sister). As soon as I hit the stairs, I ran into the house. With how much I ran in the house in panic mode, no one in my family woke up. I had no idea what to do. Do I call 911? Do I tell them that there is a bear? In the middle of nowhere where I had no idea where we were at?! And they would be like, "..and your point is?" So I grabbed my camera knowing that Travis would want me to take a picture. Why I didn't grab something else, don't ask me. I mean the bear could be attacking Travis and Brittany at this point and here I am grabbing a camera. Ha.

 

Next thing I knew, here comes Travis on the deck. "You left my sister alone?" I asked as he stepped into the house. "...The bear is gone now." We went back outside to meet my sister at the water, and Trav described to me, that when I went inside, the bear ran to almost the point I was, then went to a stump closer to them, and sat on the stump for a couple seconds, then he went back in the woods. What?!!! Brittany kept saying she wanted him to come back so she could see him again. That crazy girl. That was quite an adventure that I hope never to encounter again, unless I'm in some part of enclosure that will protect all of us. Uncle Marty discovered an area where the long grass was pressed down. "Maybe that's where he slept."

  

Once everyone was up, we finally went out on the boat. We got a little further (not even half way), and the boat turned off. So there we were stranded...


My cute aunt turned on the speaker that she brought on the boat, turned it up, and started dancing. One uncle tried to point out what was wrong with the boat. My other uncle called his friend who owned the boat and the place that we were staying at, to see if there is some other way to start it. While my uncle Marty was on the phone, Trav started fishing. We stayed on the boat for a little while, as the wind was pushing us more into the lake. Matty found the only oar, and started paddling.  Trav then stepped in and started paddling as well - only to break the oar in half. Uncle Marty and Trav took turns paddling with the broken oar to get us closer to shore. There was another guy who was closer to shore who was talking to us, but he couldn't come out and rescue us, because his boat wa broken. Ha. Once we finally reached shore, Matty jumped out and pulled us in.


That night, Matty wanted to see the new Jurassic Park movie, so Brit and I jumped in the car with him. We were a little late (because it was my fault), only to get there to find out that the movie was already sold out. I felt so bad, because I could tell that Matty was disappointed. I tried cheering him up the best way possible {with ice cream}, but I'm not sure if that worked. By the time we got back, Uncle Marty and Trav went to the store, and fixed the boat and were out fishing.


This also happened:

 

The next morning, Brittany found herself fishing again. She loved it and described it as "peaceful".

We were so sad when we had to leave, but we then headed two hours away to go and visit Trav's side for their annual family vacation.


There, it rained and was cold most of the time :( But, it was still fun.

Ashley threw a bridal shower for Libby who is getting married in two weeks. 



























Ashley made a family recipe book for Libby. 
The recipes included family favorites from
Libby and Jordan's side of the family.

We also celebrated Anneke's graduation.


Learned that Chris, Trav's cousin, has a hidden talent. This boy can sing! I was totally not expecting that to come out of his cousins mouth. I love his voice and could listen to a whole album if he would make one.

video


When it was nice, we were able to explore:

 

 

 

 
 








Trav's mom even went on a kayak ride with us.

 

Grandpa loved fishing. Rowan decided she loves fish. Ha.




Found a big musky.


And a bug that I wanted to rescue, because he tried with all his little might, but his wings could not seem to fly. :(


I fed some chipmunks.


We enjoyed hanging out with little Rowan.
 



Played an jelly bean game where you picked had to spin a little thing to see what jelly bean you got to pick to eat. Either it was something good, or something bad. Real BAD - as the taste would still be in your mouth for a long time. It was fun to watch others reactions to rotten egg, puke, etc.


 



 

We just loved visiting with each other.






 



We went on a boat ride:



And we get to see this couple get married next after Libby & Jordan:

We watched eagles:




And even spotted a baby eagle:


We watched and listened to the loons. One loon was nesting. Loons are Trav's favorite:





While mine is the dragonflies:

The cousins swam in the cold water:




Little Lily joined in on the fun:

Watched the cousins look for little creatures:

And spotted fish eggs:

The cousins played a mean game of volleyball:

We enjoyed this couple that will be getting married in a couple of weeks:
 
And took a cousin picture {we are missing: Rowan and Allie}:

It was a nice little get-a-away from Trav's school and clinicals. It was much needed. And we brought back nothing but memories :)