I realize this update is way past due, but my goal in life is to enjoy each moment and stay in the moment. To do that, I needed to take a bit of a break from posting and just appreciate what was going on in my life.
My last few days in Minnesota were really great.
My dad and I took regular walks with the dogs around the campground across the street from their house. I couldn’t help taking photos of some of the trees.
On Friday, my family and I took a trip into Wisconsin to visit a wild animal park named Fawn-doe-rosa. It’s the type of place where animals roam around and you get to feed them.
I enjoyed feeding the ducks, geese, rabbits and farm animals — especially the rabbits and the cow.
While I did enjoy areas of the park and I understand some of what they are trying to do, I had a very hard time with the fact that they housed predatory animals in small enclosures. I will refrain from going into too much detail but the property also had a bobcat, lynx, wolf, several types of foxes, and a mountain lion.
Many of the other animals roam freely — such as the deer — and they have a large area where they can exercise and get away from the prying eyes of people.
Afterwards, we went to Interstate Park where we took a short hike and saw the St. Croix River. It was beautiful.
We stopped at a grocery store to grab some beer for my dad’s upcoming hunting trip because you can only buy Spotted Cow in Wisconsin — and it’s pretty awesome. The store had the largest selection of beer that I have ever seen, with every kind imaginable. Thank you Wisconsin.
We stopped for dinner at a nice restaurant on the way home and were rewarded with an amazing sunset behind the Twin Cities.
Later that night, I went out to visit my friend Alex’s new house. On the way, I stopped at a gas station for gas and figured I would pick up a 6-pack so I didn’t show up empty-handed. Silly me. I completely forgot that Minnesota totally stinks in this way. No alcohol outside of liquor stores! On the bright side, Alex’s house was awesome and completely fitting for him. I am happy I went to see it.
On Saturday, my sister and I took a drive through my old neighborhood.
My house looks as good as ever; it seems the new owners are treating it well. I was impressed with all the changing leaves still on the trees. It really made me miss living in my old hood.
Afterwards, we stopped by Pappy’s to pick up a Chicago dog and a couple of gyros. They were just as delicious as I remembered!
We headed over to my friends Ali and Jared’s house and started decorating for an epic Halloween party.
We had an awesome time at the party and I was fortunate enough to see just about everyone!
Ali even set it up so that our friend’s band was playing live music for part of the night!
And no party would be complete without lightsabers…wait, what?
It was a night of laughter, fun, creative costumes, and getting to see some of the people that I love.
Ali even gave me a souvenir to bring back home!
When daylight broke, it was time to head back to my parents’ house and our night of costumes and friends was over. I feel like I’ll have to make this trip a tradition…
The next day, we took it easy. Both my sister and I were pretty pooped. We did make sure to carve our pumpkins, however!
My mom dug out this amazing photo of us when we were younger.
It was great to see everyone but I definitely missed Andy and the pets. I flew back to Cali on Halloween and was reminded of just how sunny California is! Man, I didn’t think I missed it that much. Cloudy Minnesota was a nice change and it made me appreciate California even more.
On my first night back, Andy and I took the dogs for a hike and then stopped by a pumpkin patch to pick one out.
We went to a haunted house put on by the Boys and Girls Club in our park and hung out at home. And I finally got to see my actual award in person!
I miss everyone back in Minnesota but our lives truly have improved since going on the road. These experiences are unforgettable and unmatchable. I am just thankful that many of the people in our lives understand that this journey was the right move for us!
Last year, we spent Halloween in a beautiful camping spot in the bluffs of Iowa. This year it’s California. I am excited to see where next year will bring us.