Last weekend, Greg and I took Nick up north to his family's farm in Gleason, Wisconsin. We go every year. It was quite a long trip to make for just two days, but it was for a special occasion. Greg's Grandma Marie (that would be Nick's great grandmother) just turned 96 years old. We usually go up there every year for her birthday, to see her and Greg's Uncle Bob and Aunt Mary, who live at the farm, too.
It was a very long car trip (over 6 hours one way), because we were way up, north of Wausau. We left Friday night right after work, and drove all the way to Rockford before we stopped for dinner. It's a good thing we stopped there, because at that point, Nick had been screaming nonstop for a good 45 minutes. It was time to get him out of the car before we all sustained hearing loss. We stopped at a place called Thunder Bay Grille, and the food was pretty good. Nick sure liked it.
After dinner, we changed Nick into his pajamas because we knew we would be travelling long into the night. It was funny because the changing table at this restaurant was really high off the ground, and Nick got really scared. He was clingy and sobbing and truly scared. I haven't seen that side of Nick very often. Apparently, he's afraid of heights. That doesn't seem to apply when he is climbing on the furniture, though.
We didn't get to our hotel (in Merril, Wisconsin) until about 11:30 p.m. Nick had been sleeping for hours by that point, which is why we had decided to travel at night. Containing a screaming child in the car for six hours when he'd rather be running is a nightmare, and we wanted to avoid the trouble. It wasn't a bad plan, even though Greg was extremely tired by the time we arrived.
First thing Saturday morning, we headed straight for the farm. Well, after stopping for coffee at McDonald's. You know you're in the middle of nowhere when the nearest Starbucks is an hour away. Sigh. But we persevered, and Nick loved running around outside on the farm.
It's funny how the weather just one state up can be so very different. We went from 90 degree heat on Thursday in Illinois, to Friday night in the mid-40s at our hotel room in Merril, WI. Good thing we brought our sweaters and jeans!
Everything is so beautiful in this part of Wisconsin--and quiet! You can hear each individual car even if it's a couple of miles away. Nick loved watching the sky for birds and airplanes.
Aunt Mary and Uncle Bob took us all out to dinner at a golf club nearby. I was very glad I'd brought some crayons and some little animals for Nick to play with. He's been getting more snuggly with his toys lately, and he kept hugging and kissing the little zebras.
Great-Grandma Marie watched him play and laughed when he threw his toys.
Nick enjoyed lobster, beef tenderloin, and fried chicken. He also ate salad, french fries, mushrooms, and green beans. Then he had ice cream for dessert. I cannot believe how skinny this child is compared to how much he eats. Here's a picture of Nick with his Great Uncle Bob, Great Aunt Mary, and Great-Grandma Marie. This was after dessert, thus the giant smile on Nick's face.
After dinner, we went back to our hotel for a swim. This was Nick's first time staying in a hotel, and he seemed to like it. He was especially interested in climbing into the drawers, so we had watch him pretty carefully. Stealing things out of our suitcases, screeching randomly, and climbing everything in sight, Nick thought hotel rooms were pretty cool. I don't know what our neighbors thought of all the noise. Nick loved opening the refrigerator. . .
. . . and stealing my sunglasses.
Tomorrow I'll write about Sunday with Great Grandma and our trip through Madison and back to Illinois. :)