For Memorial Day, Travis, Emma and I flew into Minneapolis and met my parents, brother and sister-in-law for lunch – it was my brother and SIL’s first time meeting Emma. She wasn’t in the greatest mood because she had had a long day of travel and naps being interrupted. We got takeout from Cossetta’s for lunch – I was still doing the non-dairy thing, so I didn’t have much of a selection (but that’s typical for most restaurants). I ended up getting minestrone soup and artichoke salad. It was tasty, but it didn’t fill me up. I think I ate about 5 Larabars that day.
After lunch, Travis, Emma and I headed up to Grand Rapids, where Travis’ parents live. Everyone except Travis’ mom had already gone up to their cabin on Lake Namakan in Voyageurs National Park on the US/Canadian border, but she stayed to go up with us. We stopped about an hour from Grand Rapids to feed Emma, sitting behind a gas station in the minivan we borrowed from my brother – such is the reality of parenthood. We got to Grand Rapids and unloaded our stuff, I fed Emma again and then we all went to bed.
At Travis’ parents’ house, there are 2 bedrooms downstairs. When it was just us down there, we put Emma in one room while we stayed in the other, so that we didn’t hear every little sound she made. But for part of our time there, someone was using the other bedroom so we had Emma in the room with us. Probably the worst part about having her in the same room was that the door on that bedroom is the squeakiest one ever. After putting Emma down a couple of times and her waking up shortly afterward, I asked Travis and his dad to please fix it – which apparently required them to take the door off its hinges and make all kinds of noise while I waited in the dark bathroom with a sleeping Emma.
On Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, Travis, my mother-in-law Beth, Emma and I made the 2 hour drive north to Crane Lake, to Handberg’s Marine where they launch their boats, and pick up/drop off people going to the cabin – the only way to get to their cabin is a 30-minute boat ride. We put all our stuff in the boat, and put Emma in her infant life vest. It was a little big.
The boat ride there was very uneventful, thanks to Travis’ brother Matthew’s good driving. \
For the next 3 days, we spent a lot of time outside, holding Emma.
Even though having a baby meant I spent a lot of time in our room feeding her, I got to go on a boat ride, walk to “Whiskey Point” near their cabin where a bunch of empty booze bottles have collected over the years, play bocce ball, sit around the campfire, and shoot a .22 rifle at pop cans (I missed though). Things are always pretty low-key up at the cabin.
On Wednesday, we made the trip back down to Grand Rapids for the ‘weekend of Matthew’ – his birthday was Thursday, graduation on Friday and open house on Saturday.
We went out to eat for Matthew’s birthday with his girlfriend and girlfriend’s family. Emma fussed a bit at the beginning but Travis got her to sleep and everything went smoothly then. At this point, I was still doing the no-dairy thing and man, it is hard to find stuff in restaurants that don’t have dairy and still sound appetizing. But I made it work. I got a grilled chicken sandwich and fries (At that point, I wasn’t worried about any trace dairy ingredients.)
Saturday was the open house. It ended up being cold, rainy and windy, which was a bummer, but it was fun to see some of Travis’ relatives again and have them meet Emma. I had her in the Baby Bjorn again for the first part of the party because she was being fussy and everyone was busy getting stuff ready, but later she got a bottle and others got to hold her.
Sunday morning, Travis, Emma and I drove back down to the Twin Cities because Travis was flying back to Denver and I was meeting up with my parents to go down to Rochester for a week. Emma had a very rough start to the car ride but she finally fell asleep.
My time in Rochester was pretty low-key too. My mom and I sat around and talked a lot, played with Emma, watched Scandal (I’m now officially hooked!), organized their basement a bit, and went shopping at the grocery store, Trader Joe’s, and the mall. I also got out on a couple of more runs, which was really nice. AND for Mother’s Day, my awesome mom treated me to a haircut, highlights and some new clothes.
We also tried some new stuff from Trader Joe’s:
So how did Emma do with being away from home for so long? Really well overall. She LOVES being held and there were lots of people willing to do that – so she lived it up but might have gotten a little bit too used to it. She’ll only sleep about 45 minutes in her bassinet for a nap right now. But she still consistently sleeps between 5 and 7 hours for a stretch at night in her bassinet, which is awesome and has helped me feel more human.
And that was our trip to Minnesota!