Finally leaving for the SW Thursday 12-12-19

Shoveled snow this morning. Loaded the Equinox and then moved all the food into the motorhome. Finished loading about 3:40 PM. Checked the sump pump. I pulled the plug on it. Terry is going to check the level in the morning

Moved the Equinox out of the garage and the Cherokee into the garage.

Larry helped me hook up the Equinox.

Took a shower and we headed out of Buxton at 5:45 PM.

Stopped at Fleet Farm in Fargo for gas

It took about 52.45 gal

Headed south on I-29. Cathy called the casinos to see if they had overnight parking with electric hookup. Neither did. Decided to stop at Stone’s Tesoro Truck Stop in Watertown, 145 mi from Fargo and about 200 mi from Buxton.

Got to Watertown at 10:00 PM. Started the Equinox and went into truck stop. It is real nice with a hotel and restaurant.

Stone’s Truck Stop

Started generator and furnace. It is 14 F outside. Will try to leave about 6:00 AM. Will head down US-81 into Nebraska.

Sunday 11-3-19 Saying Good Bye and Home to Buxton & Grand Forks

Took advantage of time change for an extra hour of sleep. Got David dressed & in his chair and down to lobby for breakfast. David had an omelette and a waffle.

We sat around talking

Just before 11:00 AM checkout time we gathered for a picture. Jeanne’s friend Susan took the picture

We said our goodbyes and headed to Alison’s house to pickup Joy.

We headed out of Hastings on US-61 at Noon.

After getting on I-694 we stopped at Trader Joe’s in Maple Grove

It was busy. Got some Apple Cider Donuts

Also got Baby Arugala and Romaine Lettuce, Cinnamon Spread and 2 bottles of Chianti wine.

Headed out on I-94 for North Dakota.

Stopped at Bush Creek Rest Area

Next stop was Aldi’s in Alexandria

Picked up 1/2 gal of milk for $1.14, green onions and corn chips.

Got to Buxton at 6:00 PM. Unloaded everything but David.

Headed out for David’s apartment. Stopped at Wendy’s to get David a Cheese Burger Jr and fries.

After dropping David off, Cathy and I stopped at Wendy’s on way home. I had chili and Cathy had a chicken wrap.

Saturday 11-2-19 Andrew & Rylee’s Wedding

Overcast cold day in Hastings. Looked out the window and saw what I thought was a white cat, but it was a white squirrel.

The wedding wasn’t until 3:30 PM so there was time to eat and get ready.

Alessandra and Erik came to our room and visited with David

We all left for the rural Welch, MN church for the wedding. The church they selected was Cross of Christ Lutheran about 14 mi south of Hastings on US-61

It is a beautiful church with very easy handicap access. The interior is very nice

David sat in the right hand side

The string quartet was right in front of him

We sat in the pew beside David. The wedding attendents stretched across the church

They were married by their favorite high school English teacher who is a former priest. He shared some of their poems and other stories about them. He quoted Thoreau, which David really liked.

Here is Andrew and Rylee

It was a very enjoyable wedding for everyone and not too long

The wedding party left for the reception in the white limousine

The reception was held at the Hidden Green Event Center, just south of Hastings

It is a beautiful facility

We had a choice of chicken pasta

or beef pasta

catered by their favorite Italian restaurant in St Paul

After talks about the two of them by family members, the Coxmen, a band started up and guests started dancing. Our granddaughter, Alessandra is quite a dancer

We went back to the hotel. I put David on his bed and went to spend some time with family in my son Jay’s room. It is the largest in the hotel.

Friday 11-1-19 River Falls & Prescott

We got a good night’s rest and we’re up fairly early. Cathy got breakfast and got David dressed. I got him in his chair.

At 10:30 AM I headed to River Falls, WI to see my oldest friend Gary. We met in the second grade and went through Boy Scouts together, with a lot of camping near his home in the Missouri River Bottoms. We went to school in Switzerland together our Junior Year of college. Gary’s wife Inez made us great Taco Soup and sent a bowl for David with me. He really enjoyed it.

The drive back to Hastings was enjoyable

Stopped in Prescott

They have an interesting draw bridge

When I got back to Nichol’s Inn, I went to Walmart to pick up some folding camp chairs to supplement the one chair in the room. I got a Critter Chair for Alessandra.

My sister Jeanne from New Jersey checked in and went to Walmart. My son Jay and family from Cold Spring and daughter Kathryn and family from Ft Irwin, CA also got here.

We went to the Spiral Brewery in Historic Downtown Hastings.

They don’t have food, but encourage bringing it in from nearby restaurants. Cathy and David had Mexican. I and several others got food at the Busted Nut across the street. I had a Busted Nut burger with infused bacon, lots of bacon and peanut butter

The brewery is named after the old Spiral Bridge

My granddaughters enjoyed playing together

Went back to Nichol’s Inn and spent some time in pool area. Jay and I ended up in the Lobby until 12:30 AM.

Heading to Andrew’s Wedding Thursday 10-31-19

David, Cathy and I are heading to Hastings, MN for our grandson Andrew’s wedding.We are taking David’s van. Picked David up at 10:00 AM and drove back to Buxton to load up.First the bed

Then the Hoyer lift

Then the mattress

then the suit cases

Then the ramp and laptops

We finally left Buxton at 12:50 PM

We had hardly started when Joy said she had to pee or poop. Stopped at Stamart, now Flying J, in Fargo. She peed and pooped and we filled with gas.

Drove on to Alexandria. Stopped at Holiday for coffee and cookies. Cathy was to drive to Avon. When I went to drink my Cappuccino, the cup collapsed and all came out.

Cathy drove to Avon rest stop. I took over again and we got to Alison’s at 6:45 PM. Dropped off Joy and drove to Nichol’s Inn. Jim and Sean came and helped us unload and set up.

They took one bed out to make room for David’s bed

Got everything thing setup and went to Walmart for a few things. Stopped at McDonald’s for dinner, chicken nuggets and strips.

Going for Lunch with Cathy’s College Classmates Tueday 10-15-19

Left this morning at 9:00 AM for Alexandria, MN 164 miles away. Left in rain and it continued almost to Alexandria.

Got to Lake Carlos Villas about 12:30 PM. Had a great lunch prepared by Mary and Darrell. Soup, salad and sandwiches.

Talked mostly about travel to Europe and Darrell’s trip to Honduras.

Left at 4:30 PM and stopped in Fergus Falls to see my brother Pat and his wife Linda. Saw their beautiful apartment.

Stopped at ALDI and Fleet Farm in Fergus Falls and got home at 10:00 PM.

Tuesday 9-17-19 Getting Motorhome Ready for Next Trip

Got up and mowed the lawn in front of the house.

Had lunch, then pulled motorhome up to sewer clean out in front yard. Dumped the black and grey water tanks

Flushed the black water tank and filled the fresh water tank. Parked the motorhome in the driveway

The motorhome is ready for another trip later this month. We will be visiting friends in Brainerd and Bemidji.

Need to have the brake pads replaced on the motorhome and also get the driver’s side windshield replaced.

Monday 9-16-19 Cold Spring to Buxton

Spent the night at Jay and Becky’s.

Joy was worn out after three days with all of her family, humans, dogs and cats.

Was warm overnight and 77 F when we left at 11:30 AM. Jay didn’t have to be to work until noon, so were able to spend some time with him. He was setting up Savannah and Anya’s new laptop computers.

Drove from Cold Spring to Avon and then west on I-94.

We stopped in Alexandria at ALDI.

It is a convenient stop. They have a system to get the carts returned. You have to insert a quarter to take a cart.

You get the quarter back when you return the cart.

We picked up a lot good things including salami, pasta, vegetables, yogurt, chips and candy.

It is an easy drive over to Mills Fleet Farm

Bought a burger press that does regular burgers, stuffed burgers and sliders. Always make purchase in store to get four cent per gallon discount on gas

$2.419 after discount inside station

It took 56 gallons. We made 7.62 mpg on that tank.

Headed west on I-94 to Fargo. Turned north onto I-29. Stopped at Stamart to dump, but somebody was hogging the dump. After waiting awhile decided to dump at home. It was 89 F in Fargo.

Got home at 5:45 PM. It was 84 F and very humid.

Made mini pizzas we bought at ALDI

They were very tasty and the crust was like what we had in Italy

After dinner, Joy and I went across the street to watch American Ninja Warrior with Larry and Princess. Drew Drechsel won the Million Dollars, first winner in four years.

Will have to dump the tanks and now the lawn tomorrow.

Sunday 9-15-19 Hastings to Cold Spring

Was warm over night. Woke up to a nice sunny day parked at Alison and Jim’s.

After breakfast of bacon and eggs and visiting with Tony, Melissa and Bridgett, we headed out to Cold Spring at noon.

We went up US-61 to I-494 to I-35 to I-694 to I-94.

We stopped at Fuller Lake Rest Area north of Clear Lake

We turned off I-94 at MN-23 and headed west. We stopped at Jay and Becky’s in Cold Spring. We got there at 3:00 PM.

We found Bubbles the cat taking care of the place and greeting us

They were all at their lake place on Big Fish Lake. We drove out to the lake.

It was a perfect day at the lake, 79 F and nice breeze. We just watched the dogs playing.

Jersey had been fishing for the last four hours

We had chicken, pasta salad and hamburger sliders

Jay took Cathy, Joy and me for a ride on the pontoon boat. We saw some nice houses.

Joy really took to riding on a boat

We saw a beautiful sunset on the lake

We docked in the dark. There was a very nice campfire

Went back to Jay and Becky’s. We watched the movie “Miami Vice” and talked

Saturday 9-14-19 Shower for Riley

The reason for going to Hastings was for our grandson Andrew’ fiance Riley’s wedding shower.We slept in late. Cathy showered and went to the shower at 1:00 PM.Andrew picked me up and we went lunch at Philanders Grill and Bar. We each had a tall Spotted Cow and a hamburgerWe then went to St Croix Liquor to buy Spotted CowIt is only available in Wisconsin and lots of Minnesotans flock to Wisconsin to buy it.When we got back to Jim and Alison’s, Jim was home from work. He suggested that we go for a boat ride.We to the marina in downtown HastingsWe got on the boat and Jim started the engines. The starboard engine wouldn’t turn over. Jim had to tap the starter solenoid to get it goingWe headed out in the Mississippi to the St Croix. We went under the new highway bridgePast some bargesUnder the draw bridges into the clean waters of the St CroixWe saw a lot nice swimming beaches and expensive housesWhen we got back home, we ent to eat Wiederholts Supper Club in Miesville, MN. This was the second Supper Club this weekThey have been in business for over 70 years.I had Ham Steak off of the light eaters section of the menuIt was a huge piece of ham with pineapple on top. I brought most of it home.We went back to Alison and Jim’s and had coffee and talked.