Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Tour in the Heartland

I wrote this post on Sunday and meant to put photos in and then post on Monday. Obviously that did not happen because somehow it is already Wednesday evening and this post is still sitting in my drafts. Better late than never! :) 

Ahhh! What a fun weekend I had! Just what I needed after most of July being a bummer.

Friday after getting off work, Bill and I headed about 2 hours north to Clear Lake, Iowa to see a couple of 80s bands play at The Surf Ballroom. Due to The Surf being historic, the entire weekend turned into a mini history tour and I LOVED it!

Why is The Surf historic, you ask? Well, let me tell you.

The Surf is the last place that Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens (lalalalalalala bamba!) and the Big Bopper played before they met their untimely death in a tragic plane crash in 1959. I was always aware that these three musicians died in Iowa in a plane crash, but I did not realize the details. It was very sad!

The day after the concert (Saturday) Bill and I, plus his hilarious family which included his uncle and cousins, deemed the day "Adventure Day" because on the way up to Clear Lake Bill asked me if I had to be back to DSM before Monday and I said no. After that he suggested going on an "adventure" (which means, "let's go do something other than go home) and I latched on to this idea and would NOT let it go. Ha!

Everything we did was "adventure!" What can we say, we like to make things fun cause we're fun people! :)

Saturday morning, Bill and I woke up, went on a nice 4 mile jog around the lake area (one of the only runs I have ever done with Bill because he is faster than me) and then headed back to his grandma's house to get ready and head over to his uncles house for lunch. After lunch, we were trying to decide what to do and it came out that his uncle had never seen the crash site! We all decided then and there that it was absolutely NECESSARY that we go see it!

After some gravel roads, a few detours and then a walk through fields (surprisingly not a cornfield!) we found the site!

Marking the trail to go to the actual site is a statue of Buddy Holly's glasses. After posing with them, we made our way about a quarter of a mile through the field to the site. The sky was absolutely gorgeous with big fluffy clouds meeting farm fields on the horizon

The actual site was a little anti-climactic and we were disappointed that there wasn't something a bit more memorializing than glorified garbage! There was cheap movie theater 3d glasses, beer cans, credit cards, latex gloves, coins, t-shirts... just random crap! You can tell some people left nice things like flowers, but most of it was junky and gross. There were four small headstone type things that someone left (a fourth for the pilot), and those were nice. We couldn't leave without a few tears shed from Bill and his uncle... it was very traumatic for these two old(er) men. :)

After leaving the site, Bill's family decided I need a more appropriate tour of Clear Lake because I had never been there, so we headed down to the beach and park area and found a small art festival going on. So, we looked around for awhile, and resisted our urge to buy stuff! I was SO close to buying a spoon ring, but ultimately resisted since I am on a strict no spending freeze! 

After leaving the festival, we checked out a new meat shop called Louie's Customer Meats and More, where we bought some bacon and hamburgers to head home and grill bacon burgers. Gosh, I wish I had taken more pictures of the food we ate, because we ate WELL this day. Grilled chicken for lunch accompanied with corn (what else?) and enough cheese, crackers and summer sausage before the meal to last us a long while, then grill bacon burgers for dinner. Mmmm, it was all so delish!

Oh, and I didn't mention the ice cream we stopped and got while their cousin was working! This day was so indulgent, lol! Good thing we got in a run at the beginning of the day...

The rest of the day and night we just laid around, relaxing, talking, reading (well, I was the only one reading. I'm weird) and playing games until it was time for Bill and I to head back to DSM. We got home pretty late, but it didn't bother me one bit because we had such a good day! I had so much fun with his family and in a new part of Iowa that I quickly fell in love with!

Do you have friends that can make everything fun and never seem bored? I am so grateful to have found a guy that seems to do just that. He makes everything a good time! :)

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Mid Summer Update

Hello, hello! It has been quite awhile since I have posted. I am still very unsure of where I want this space to go in the future, but for now I hope that you are following me via Twitter, Instagram and even Facebook. I tend to update those accounts regularly, so please feel free to follow me or request me as a friend. :)

I am not going to lie, July has had its ups and downs. Well, I should say ups and one down. That down being that I have been sick all month. Literally, I have been sick the entire month so far. In late June I started to come down with something and had the basic sore throat, stuffed up sinuses and cough. I tried to remedy it on my own (as I usually successfully do) and it did not work. On July 4th I was in urgent care and just miserable. I ended up having bronchitis and spent my 4th of July holiday week IN BED. They gave me amoxicillin and it did NOTHING. Five days later I called back and said I thought I needed the Zpack, which I have never taken before, but knew it would be effective. Thank god I did that because the Zpack did wonders right before I went on vacation to Miami. I was so close to canceling my trip and I am so thankful that I didn't!

My girlfriends and I went on a vacation to Miami, and it was fantastic! We spent hours sitting on the beach soaking up sun and it was just what I needed. I was still blowing my nose and drinking Alka Seltzer like it was my job, but I still had a fantastic time and cannot wait to go back!

My friend Kristi and I doing a jumping pic... I have some work to do before I master the art form of the "jumping pic" :-/ 
I totally ordered pizza on the beach. It sounded good! 
 View from the jetty at the very end of South Beach. I still cannot get over how clear the water was!

Other things that have been going on ... I got into my classroom and did some work. Yes, I got a job! I am the newest fourth grade teacher in a suburban district and a school very close to where I live. I am SO excited and feel so fortunate and blessed!

The main entrance of my building. I love how my school is tucked back behind houses, if you didn't know it was there, nobody would have any idea! :) 
This is where I will spend a ton of time for the next year! I have a lot of work to do, but I could not be more excited! 
 I am so proud of this book collection that I have been collecting for the past two years!

I am juggling three jobs. Yes, three. I am still at the agency and am still on call status so I am choosing my shifts and hours (which, is SO nice). Two days a week I also nanny (ok, babysit) for a friend of my boyfriends from his running group and I the other three days I am working for another friend of a friend that runs an in-home daycare and wanted to move up a level, for which she needed someone with a teaching degree. She has anywhere between 13-17 kids a day and they are ALL under the age of 5... I (lovingly) refer to it as "Toddler Town" because ... well... it IS! I love it :)

I wish I could post pics, but I just cannot because this blog is not private. If you follow me on Instagram, Twitter or even Facebook you will see some pictures of my newest friends under the age of 6 :)

Things with Bill have been going great and our one year anniversary is coming up! I can hardly believe it. That year has flown by and I am so grateful to have him in my life :)
 A little grainy, but this is us at the Art Festival a few weeks ago

I am not sure what will happen with this space. Only time will tell! In the mean time, tell me how your summer has been going! What has been most memorable so far? For me, it has definitely been Miami and setting up my classroom :)