Cabin Fever…..This Is Real People!!!

They say a broken heart is a true condition some people suffer from. I also believe that cabin fever should also be on the list of real diagnostic conditions. For me, and I know many others feel this way also, cabin fever is real. And the past two weeks it has been pretty severe. My moods are all over, my energy level I need to dig deep for, and my sleep is some nights great and some nights not so great. And when I listen to the weather…..well, it’s normally best not to listen to the weather.

Even though temps lately have been tolerable, I know living in WI the weather can turn back to full blown winter in a matter of hours so I try not to get to excited too early.  However, that didn’t stop me from taking my whole gang outside to play for the first time in months. Oh, it was glorious!!!! And it also gave me a big case of cabin fever!!!!IMG_0513

Like I said, I have been struggling and I needed to make a snap decision to turn life back around and get some air. All this took was a bit of thought, a quick email to my husband that I needed a break from life, and a few things thrown into an overnight bag…..and I was off on an overnight adventure to find myself again. Saturday morning I quickly threw together a penne pasta casserole for Sunday when I returned home to toss into the oven for dinner. This way I would not need to hurry home for any reason….and walla we were off to find sunshine, fresh air, and hopefully open water and not ice bergs. IMG_0520

Like usual, I chose the destination and I wanted somewhere I had never been before. I also knew I needed to be around water(two places that bring me peace are one around water and  two atop mountains…..WI has a ton of water and no mountains so my options were limited) and I needed everything in walking distance since I hate driving in strange cities. I made some strict rules for my husband to follow since he asked to join me in my 24 hrs. of solitude…..no job talk, I get to choose all the restaurants, I get to walk as far I my body will let me, and I get control of the remote control when we finally do decide to rest. He happily agreed and then was allowed to join me in my adventure.

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My destination ended up being Port Washington,WI. I had never been here and neither had my husband. IMG_0558

Upon arrival, it was sunny, gorgeous, and the ice had all melted and left open water and miles and miles of harbor walk for us to enjoy.

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We walked mostly paved walkways but we also did climb some pretty big boulders to make our way out to some of the lake markers that I don’t know know if we should have but we did anyhow. There were no Do Not Enter signs but clearly no one else was taking this route except us. It felt so good to be alive and breathing fresh air again that I really did not care if we would have found the game warden/or the dock master waiting for us when we returned.

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We explored for miles…..we saw so much beauty and I even got to sit on one of the piers for a bit and just let my mind clear itself.

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We paid tribute to a fellow kayaker by climbing to the top of his memorial gazebo which personally, could not have been placed on a better part of land. It overlooks where he lost his life and this is somewhere that can honor him and his love for paddling forever. Being a kayaker myself, I can truly see why he was paddling the waters of Lake Michigan….so gorgeous.

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After all this walking, more sunshine that I have gotten on my face in over 6 months, and even a bit shopping on the historic street next to our hotel….we were tired. We checked into our hotel located right on the harbor walk and walked to dinner before turning in for the evening. And believe it or not….I could not find a single thing on television to keep my interest so I handed over the remote control to my husband with a kiss goodnight….and that was that.

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I will soon fill you all in on where we all ate and the absolutely fabulous meals we had in this area of the city. We also already have plans to return as a family. Only next time, fishing poles, tackle, cameras, tripods, picnic blankets, and coolers will all be added to the packing list. Maybe even a few kayaks, paddles, and PFD’s.

 

 

It’s Cooler By The Lake

As life would have it high heat and humidity in WI bring the risk of sever thunderstorms which brings a quick change of plans. So what do we do to escape the heat but still be outside, we head to the lake….Lake Michigan that is.

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Originally, we had plans to paddle the chain of Lakes in Waupaca but quickly made a change since the sustained winds were 30mph or higher and thunderstorms were a possibility. We have been there, done that before, and we were not willing to relive this possibility again. However, it was a weekend, the sun was shining, and it was HOT! Which meant I wanted to be outside where I am happiest, so my husband suggested we head lakeside and tour lighthouses and walk the piers since the waves would be fun to see. I was all in!!!

We started in Kewaunee, WI but were quickly disappointed to find the lighthouse was under construction and the pier was closed.

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We did see a wedding just finishing up lakeside. What a gorgeous place to say I love You!

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Being we have been here many times before, we also brought the watermelon rind from the watermelon I cut up before leaving home and grabbed a few carrots to feed to the deer at a local wildlife park in this area. They seemed to enjoy the cool treats.

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Next we headed to Algoma, WI and had lunch at a place my husband has eaten at numerous times for business lunches but I have only visited once with a friend for coffee. Wow, what a fabulous lunch we had. They have an enormous menu, indoor and outdoor seating(with blankets provided since it’s always cooler by the lake), and some wonderful desserts which we did not indulge in sadly.

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After lunch we visited the Algoma pier which waves were crashing over so hard that we were also not able to walk to the end. Although, the view was quite spectacular and it was much colder…..87 at home….64 in Algoma! BRRRRR!!!!

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Even the pelicans seemed to be struggling in the high winds.

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Our last pier of the day was Sturgeon Bay. This is always my favorite. It’s so beautiful.

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While here we even got to witness a “not so wise” family attempt to take on the waves with their boat and quickly decided it was too much to handle when the turned back around shortly after.

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Thankfully, the coast guard boat never had to leave the dock and rescue them. However, whether they know it or not, on shore they had quite the audience watching them attempt this crazy stunt.

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And that was our Saturday…..still spent outside but at times I did have to wear my jacket.So if your looking for a break from the heat and humidity you can never go wrong heading to the lake shore and exploring the area. It has so much to offer… just don’t forget a light jacket.

As for Sunday, much of the same weather was expected so I stayed home and did some things of my own and my husband and son headed out for a quick fishing trip. Successful fishing trip it was…..here is what they brought home. WOW!!!!

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Silver Creek Park Disc Golf- Manitowoc, WI

We have been to many disc golf courses in our area. Recently we visited Silver Creek Park Disc Golf Course for the first time in Manitowoc,WI and I am very happy to announce I have a new favorite.

This place has everything I love. It’s like disc golfing while hiking. Upon arrival you will head to the field house.

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There is a nice parking area here and bathrooms on the side of the field house. I suggest using them as this is a 27 basket course. IMG_1152

Your first basket is located a short walk from the parking area. Take a look at the map provided and watch for a bright yellow donation can at basket #1.

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My first impressions were wonderful. Trees were everywhere and water hazards are located at many of the baskets.

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There are hills around every corner….and when I say hills I mean HILLS. Here is basket #13. If you over throw your disc you are going to be making a long hike down to then again make the long hike back up to finish the round.

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Then you move onto basket #14 to then make the throw across the soccer field from the top of a big hill over across to the the rivers edge. All while making sure you don’t over step the tee pad or you will be taking a tumble down the hill yourself.

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You will eventually cover this entire park from every angle. There are bridges to cross under

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and then over.

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There are baskets that bring you right along the Lake Michigan shore

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with one basket that you will be throwing your disc straight at the lake with very little room for mistakes.

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You may even get lucky and run into some wildlife while playing here….we did.

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All in all I would say this course is one of the very best we have ever played at. The signage is spectacular and the terrain is a great workout.

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There is no doubt that you will enjoy playing here. However, I would make a few suggestion to anyone thinking about visiting. This course is steps from the Lake Michigan shoreline which is always cooler than inland. A light jacket may be appropriate. This is also a very long, strenuous course with numerous hills. You may want to have a snack with you for refueling. We actually played the first 14 baskets which then brought us back near the parking lot where we stopped to have a quick snack before finishing. (we packed some snacks ourselves and had them in our vehicle)

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And one more thing…..if your find yourself searching in the tall grasses/wooded areas watch for poison ivy…..it’s everywhere!

Have you ever tried disc golf?

What’s your favorite place to play?

Weekend Highlights: July 4th. Weekend

Technically, our July 4th weekend started out at 4:30 Thursday night when my last daycare child was picked up from our home. My husband was with our son at the orthopedic surgeons office and I was left home alone with my thoughts of the last few days. And what a few days it was.

First of all, being out of routine with little ones running around does not make life easy! Typically, our son is at work most week days and we do our thing throughout the day. This is not at all what happened this past week. Instead, our son slept most of the day time hours or needed assistance of some kind. I honestly don’t know what injury was worse for me to deal with. His broken clavicle was the one that gave him the worse pain but the head injury gave us the biggest worry. Even the doctors were amazed all the CT scans came back ok because the bump and gash they stapled back together was amazing. So we obviously did not leave him alone for the first few days, which meant after Monday when my husband went back to work it was all me. Thankfully my husband took the overnight hours of checking on him and making sure he did not roll on the head injury and kept his medication on time. I got to sleep through most of the first few nights.

Then our weekend arrived and all original plans of kayaking were cancelled:( I was bummed! We struggled to decide if we should do anything at all with or without him and in the end decided that it would be best to stay together and just take it easy. He was still sleeping a lot of the time and his arm still hurt him quite a bit. So Friday was a relaxing day of getting some things done. I did a little shopping and then we planned a relaxing beach day for Saturday hoping that he would feel up to at least getting out of the house.

Saturday morning was gorgeous. We loaded up the stand up paddle board, one kayak, beach towels,chairs, and headed to the beach. If there is a better place to recover from an accident other than relaxing on a beach I would love to hear it because I believe sunshine can cure almost anything. We had the pleasure of having our neighbors join us for the day and it was quite a pleasant day for everyone. Both our neighbors had the opportunity to try stand up paddle boarding for the first time and did wonderful.

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Even our son was in the water for some of the time. The only part of him that he was not able to get wet was his head so he even attempted to play frisbee with us. Although, it was quite frustrating to throw with the wrong hand and watch it go everywhere other than where he was hoping it would go.

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At the end of our day our neighbor decided it was her time to learn how to wet exit and roll in a whitewater kayak. We had taken her down a river once before in the past but it was too cold to teach this on that day, so this was the perfect place to learn. The beach was a controlled area with no current and lots of assistance.

First, the wet exit was attempted. She got all the advice she needed and we were all close by for help if she needed it. Over she went.

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And out and up she came.

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Success!!!! It’s funny how this is really the biggest fear most people have when in a kayak for the first time. The questions of WILL I BE ABLE TO GET OUT is always scary and the best way to know if you can is to just do it. She did terrific and even said she has a better feeling now knowing she will be able to exit in the event of a rollover on a river.

Then she surprised my husband and son with the request to try and roll. Females are the bravest people we have had on the river by far and she was no different. Request granted and the lesson began.

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Here she is learning the hip action while leaning against my husband as our son watches and gives pointers. (he really felt so useless because normally he teaches the roll very well)

Now, it was her turn to try it and hope for the best. Over she went…

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And no success, she had to wet exit. Although she tried twice, both times were unsuccessful:(  We all have faith that in time she will get it.

After this we were all chilly and agreed it was time to pack up and head to a county park very nearby before heading home. Upon arrival the temperature change was amazing. I grabbed a jacket before heading down to the shoreline.

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We did not spend a whole lot of time here because of high, rough water and it was time to get our son home to rest. He was already sleeping in the car by the time we returned.

Even though it was not the weekend of kayaking we had planned, it was still a great day on the water. We all had a wonderful day at the beach with some fun friends and beautiful weather. I love summer:)

Then Sunday came and the first thing on the agenda was a quick trip to the clinic so our son could get his staples removed. I can’t believe a week has past since the accident. The rest of the day we just sort of did our own things. My husband went fishing, I hung out did some reading and went for a walk and made a pan of no boil lasagna for dinner. And our son had more friends stop in for a visit. I must admit, it was a nice way to end a long weekend.

Did you do anything fun? I’d love to hear about it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekend Happenings

Friday night after a long week of work, and surprise landscaping that my husband decided we needed to do this summer, we went out for dinner. It was a new restaurant to us called Rustique Pizzeria that we actually taste tested at the Feast with the Beast Monday night.

We arrived and saw that they had a great outdoor seating option which we took advantage of on such a nice night.

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Upon arriving, I noticed that almost every table had the same appetizer ordered. Pesto fries, which I had never heard of before. I knew there was no hope what so ever for us to order that, because my husband does not eat pesto. He claims it reminds him too much of the under side of a lawnmower!!! So, while reading the menu I noticed you could get a sandwich and add pesto fries for a small amount extra. (I have not eaten fries in years, but these sounded tasty and I love pesto, so I splurged) He ordered the margarita pizza, and I ordered the veggie sandwich and pesto fries.

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Oh my, I was in heaven. They are everything I imagined, and so was the veggie sandwich. I even tasted his pizza, yum- yum- yum!

I told him anytime he wanted to go out, this would be my top choice of restaurants.

Saturday our son went sailing for the first time with some friends as a last hurrah before they all go their separate ways to college in a few weeks. Which left us alone. We decided to go fish Lake Michigan out of a different port this time.

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We went past some cool tugboats along the way.

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Although we did not have any luck catching fish, the water was perfect and the weather was tolerable. No rain just a little chilly at times.

It ended up being a nice weekend, with some well deserved down time to relax.

Weekend Happenings….

This is the first weekend all summer we have not had preplanned plans. Which left us wondering, what should we do? We have so many upcoming adventures, that laying low and close to home sounded quite nice to me.

Saturday morning we started by sleeping in until 6am.(Yes, normal wake up time for us is 4am, so 6:00am was very nice.) I did a few chores, worked out, ran a few errands, hubby did some of his “honey do” list, and then we thought it was too beautiful to just sit and waste a sunny day. We checked out the Algoma/ Lake Michigan web cam to see what the big lake looked like, and it was sunny, with a little ripple. Exactly what I have been waiting for all summer. We loaded up the paddle board, packed a quick lunch and we were off to the big lake.

My boys brought kayaks to goof around and practice rolling with and I had my board, who could ask for anything more perfect.

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I was so happy to finally have my moment with beautiful blue water, sunny skies and my board.

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Meanwhile, my boys were testing out my kayak, to see who could roll it the best. Doesn’t my husband look so concerned standing there with his arms crossed and our son is upside down in my kayak?

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No need to fret though, we have all come to know how long each one of us is comfortable being upside down. He was up in seconds. My kayak is the easiest to roll of all of them, so each one was over and back up with no problem.

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It was a spectacular day at the beach. Sun, sand and paddling:) Pure Happiness!

Sunday brought a day of tasks we have been wanting to do for some time. With the help of my brother, my husband trimmed dead and hanging branches from our huge tree in the backyard.

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We made a visit to the veggie market in Black Creek.

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I bought $16.00 worth of veggie happiness!

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We came home and immediately lit the grill and started roasting veggies for homemade salsa. Recipe will be posted this week.

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What a terrific weekend. A lot of chores were accomplished with a little added fun in between.