Sunday, January 6, 2013

Trip to Iowa

Once again the trip to Iowa for Christmas was loaded with fun and good memories.   We came up with a list of things that we want to remember from this trip listed in no particular order.

 The 12 hour trip that became a 17 hour trip.  The blizzard that ripped through Central Iowa turned I-80 and I-380 into virtually one-lane roads.  Add an overheated car due to a water pump issue and, well, you have a really, really long trip.

Tipton Family Restaurant.  When the car overheated we took the first exit off I-80 which led us to Tipton, IA.  A wonderful mechanic replaced our water pump in less than an hour while the kids and I enjoyed tasty hot chocolate at the restaurant.  Seth even asked to stop there on the way home!

Chicken soup and Pig-in-the-Blankets at midnight.  Mom planned on us for a late-ish supper, but I don't think she was thinking midnight.  The chicken soup and pigs looked really good as we didn't stop for a supper and snacks can only take you so far.

Aaron Rozeboom and Kim DeJong wedding.  I have some great memories of summer Bible studies in OC with Kim and her friends.  We appreciated being able to share this memorable event in her life.

Pizza Ranch pizza.  We were able to satisfy this craving twice while in Iowa.  Once at the wedding reception which featured a Pizza Ranch buffet and then again the following Saturday night.

Christmas prime rib and Bingo table.  Always a highlight, this year was no different.

Games, Games and more Games.  Settlers of Catan, Citadel, College bowl games (including checking stats to see who is winning the bowl picks), Heartland Strategy, Dutch Blitz, Uno Attack, Capitalism, snooker, foosball, darts, shuffleboard, and ping-pong.  It had been years since I played a good game of Around the World in ping-pong.

ISU Bowl Game.  Although the outcome wasn't what we were looking for the food and fun that accompanied the game were memorable. 

Friendship between Cookie and Zoe.  Initially, Cookie was afraid of Zoe, but as she warmed up to her they provided us lots of entertainment as they became acquainted.

Listening to six sermons from "Pastor" Russ.  Preaching six times doesn't make for an overly relaxing Christmas break, but Russ considers it a privilege to be able to preach God's Word.

Fellowship with friends.  Not only were we able to to fellowship with friends at the Heritage, Harvest, and Immanuel churches, we were also able to visit with friends at the wedding/reception.  We also spent some time with Sarah W before she headed to CA for the Rose Bowl parade.  Caleb invited Clay B to the Hobbit while Lydia played with Emma B.  Nicolas spent an afternoon with Clayton W, Lydia spent an afternoon with Kate W, and Anna spent an afternoon with Sophie S.  We also enjoyed an evening of fellowship with Abe and Amy just days before they added #6 to their family on Jan 2--Ruth Teresa.

Snow and Cold.  Since we had no snow in Michigan it was fun to put on the snowpants/boots/etc and spend some time enjoying the snow in Iowa.  Unfortunately, we forgot how bitterly cold NW Iowa winters can be!

Beautiful Sunrises.  Although I often see the beautiful colors of the sunrise out my Michigan kitchen window in the morning, it does not compare to those in Iowa.

Hobbit.  Seeing this movie was on the boys' agenda.  The plan was to see a matinee sometime.  They didn't realize all the matinees were in 3D, so although they enjoyed seeing the movie with the cute glasses, they didn't save much money.

Stomach Flu.  Poor Finn and Nora.  They had a tough couple of days.  Seth got to take his turn the day before we left.  Since it lasted three days, involved both ends, and only affected the little people we wonder if he had a rotavirus.

He is not sleeping, just lying on the sofa in the basement absolutely miserable.   Seth is so glad Grandma fixed "Duckie."

Ollie Bollen and Stroepwaffles.  We always enjoy these traditions.  Caleb was able to take pictures to document these moments for an upcoming school English project on his heritage.

Nicolas endearing himself to his uncles.  He may not be able to leave them alone or give them much personal space, but I hope they know that he just loves them tons. I am grateful they put up with it and play lots of games with him. 

Breakfast at Casey's Bakery.  Thanks, Dad.  What is a trip to Sioux Center without a trip to Casey's Bakery?

Cousin bonding.  Whether it is racing cars down the ramp, building a Christmas Lego train, decorating a gingerbread train, watching videos, making bead bracelets, playing games or dressing up in old prom and bridesmaid dresses the cousins always have a good time together.

Family Food and Fellowship.  Thanks to B and B and Cora and Marlon who hosted us for meals and all who brought lots of snacks and goodies over for us to enjoy at mom and dad's.  Although the food was awesome, the fellowship/conversation and time spent together was even better.

Baby kittens.  Cuddling baby kittens at Grandpa and Grandma H's farm is always a hit. 

Rage with Grandma Carol.  Not sure what happened here because I was taking care of my sick boy, but evidently Carol's play gave all the boys (including Grandpa and Russ) the giggles that even resulted in tears.

Watching the movie Spirit for at least the 10th time.  I don't know why, but this is one movie I never tire of watching/listening to and it always makes our list of movies to take along on the long trip to Iowa.

There were more memorable moments from the trip but some things you just can't write about or put on a blog--we just have to treasure them in our heart.  We are thankful we had safe travel both directions and are grateful for the blessing of family and friends to visit!

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