Sunday, September 30, 2007

My first 'Mom' visit to Platteville

Today I drove across the state with Matthew to visit Cassie. I was fortified with gifts of cookies, mugs, t-shirts, pastries and chocolate from our trip to the UP and my kitchen. It was everything a helicopter mom needs to take on an inspection visit. I even provided cookies to Dave and Matthew along with a 21st birthday 4 pack of birch beer (soda) for Dave. :)
We went out for brunch and then went to worship at the local United Methodist church. This day the church was celebrating it's 175th anniversary, YES!!! 175 years in Platteville. The Bishop was even there to give the message. This was quite a celebration.
The pic above is of me with Dave. He was an intern this Summer at work specializing in computer software applications and now is back in school for another 2 years. He is renting the house behind us with a few of his friends. [The land lord has been painting the house and had just finished the blue. It looks like he will get it done by Winter.]
The pics below are of happy happy Cassie and Matthew, in her dorm room and in front of her dorm building.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

25 years road trip VIII

This is the only posting I have of the Lake Michigan side of the U.P. This is Menomonie, Michigan. During the days Wisconsin outlawed yellow coloring in margarine people would head for the border to buy it by the case. My Grandmother would head for Marinette/Menomonie or would place an order with whoever she heard was going there.

I found my way to the marina and took an hour to enjoy the crisp Autumn weather. Unlike Munising Bay Menomonie is a man made shelter from the open water of Lake Michigan. This structure allowed me to view the marina from a number of sides.

Click on this picture to see the boat pulling out of the marina. It was choppy.
This is a view to the South. The beach allows swimming at your own risk. The day was September 10, 2007. It rained from Green Bay South that day. See the clouds in the distance?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

25 years road trip VII

There are back roads to hiking paths in the Pictured Rocks National Forest. They are not wheel chair accessible. They cannot be driven had highway speeds and expect to keep your support system in tact. They are worth the hike. SLOWLY is a good way to hike. The trails have wooden bridges over the swampiest parts, sometimes. Most of the paths are a combination of roots, leaves, sand and pine needles. The mileage seems to be as the crow flies. 1.3 miles is from my front door to Greenfield Park on paved sidewalks. The 1.3 miles in the National park did not include the 45 degree hills and the zig zag paths up and down the hills. The photos do not do justice to the changing elevations on the hikes.
Larry is puddle hopping above the Mosquito Falls on Mosquito River.
Mosquito River Falls.
This is how we got to Mosquito Falls on the Mosquito River. It was a cool day that allowed me to wear long sleeves. Otherwise I may have also had an opportunity to have a first hand experience with the Mosquito River's namesake.
As with the lake tour, these colors are true to the day.

25 years road trip VI

The waterfall is called bridal veil falls. Notice the clouds. A front came through on the later part of the tour with clouds and the cooler weather expected in the Fall. The rest of the pics, except Larry's intrigue with the wake of the boat are of the sunset. It was cold and beautiful.

25 years road trip V

25 years road trip IV

Munising bay is protected by Grand Island. This is located in the middle of the bay. It is what keeps the bay one of the safest on Lake Superior. Above is a light house. It is maintained by people who have Summer homes on the Island. One of the light house workers lived there with his family of 12 children.
Pictured Rocks is a National park of ~ 12 1/2 miles long. From the harbor you see a tree lined ridge. You have to get onto the lake to see the cliffs.
The bedrock is colored by the minerals that seep through with the water escaping the water table of the surrounding land. It is higher than the lake. Black is formed by the manganese and tannin of the forest. The green/tourquoise is from the copper. The white is from Calcium. The reds are from the iron deposits.

Some of the areas were deep enough for the boat to go right up to the cliff. In one area we went into a tight alcove that rose above the top deck of the boat. Some areas the water was only 2 feet deep next to the cliffs.

25 years road trip III

We started out in the morning thinking about making the 10:00 boat trip. Then we realized we were in the central time zone and Munising is in the eastern time zone. Then we aimed at the 1:00 boat trip and got side tracked by a bakery in one of the small towns between Marquette and Munising. We arrived in time to see it leave the dock. There was room on the 4:00 tour.

Above is Larry after we registered at the hotel. It was a warm day. He has on the sweat shirt in anticipation of the cool Lake Superior.
The rail tracks above led into the lake. I don't know if double clicking will show enough to be able to see the underwater tracks through the waves.
These are some of the boats in Munising Bay. Yes, the colors are accurate.

Below is what the high school looks like from the dock. There were some boys playing in the water as we got on board. They started out with shirts on and then had more fun with their shirts off.

25 years road trip II

We spent the Friday night in Norway then drove the rest of the way to Munising the following morning. Above is the view of Lake Superior as we crested a hill. Sky. Lake. Forest.

To get to Munising from Norway we had to go through Christmas. Below is one of the Christmas shops.

Here is the front of the Munising hotel we stayed at. Notice the advertisements behind the hotel sign. This is the place we chose for the tour of the pictured rocks from the Lake Superior side. We were not disappointed. Below is everyone lining up for the ride. All were civilized and a good time was had by all.

Monday, September 10, 2007

25 years road trip

Twenty five years ago Larry and I gathered friends and family in a storefront chapel to declare before all, our desire to live a future together. Most of the anniversary dates were uneventful with a few exceptions. On our first anniversary I learned Phil was on the way. On our 18th anniversary Larry and his brother replaced the south roof shingles on the house. I like to think of that as a metaphore. On our 19th anniversary we had not planned anything special. That date is etched in the memory of every person alive then and in the future. This Tuesday is our 25th wedding anniversary. To celebrate we took the weekend and a day to enjoy a road trip to the upper peninsula of Michigan. AKA God's country.

Wisconsin has it's rolling hills and lakes and ports and forests. The U.P. has all that and steep, hilly forests right up to the lake. There are sloping beaches and cliffs that rise 200 feet above Lake Superior.

These are the first views of Lake Superior East of Marquette.

Below are wild turkeys crossing the road on the small detour we made to visit Larry's family. There were also deer and red squirrel sitings over the 3 days.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Phil and the tennis ball

Larry split a tennis ball to pad the trailer hitch. Phil decided to try it on his nose, first. Too bad there is no after pic. Today is a quiet day.... I did some yard work so Larry could get the ladder up to paint. Phil is experimenting with sticky buns to serve at church next Sunday. My freezer may be full with his experiments. It is quiet. One less person.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Cassie to College

Today we took Cassie to College. Here is what the car looked like. We are transitioning from Huskie green and white to Pioneer blue and orange. She could not sleep last night so an hour in the car is a good thing. Yes, we were at America's most popular restaurant.
All (non-current sports) freshmen HAD to show up today. The drill was to pull up close to the assigned dorm, stack the stuff while the student ran around collecting paperwork and signing other papers. Then I got to find a parking space... 1/4 mile away was pretty good considering there was close to gridlock on the roads.
The pile below is the personal stuff she took to last until Christmas. There is a computer, oboe and a bike. Surprisingly, her's was one of the smaller piles. I saw office chairs with foot stools, futons and big screen TVs.
For the joy of being the 'pile sitter' while daughter and father put together a bed loft I have been awarded a sun burn. I got the better end of the deal. Dorm rooms were occupied via stair wells and students/parents carrying personal contents up said stairs. She lucked out with a 2nd floor room.

This is what 1/2 a dorm room looks like, lofted.
This is the last goodbye with a card that sang, 'Call Me'. I will visit her late this month. Then we will have a lot of new things to talk about.