Road trip to Missouri

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Missouri’s rolling hills

 

After our brief beach vacation, Paul had to fly home back to Pittsburgh.  I was on leave of absence from school, so I decided to extend my travels a bit and partake in a road trip with my parents from Florida to Wisconsin, all while nice and pregnant.  We loaded into the truck and started North. On the way back to Wisconsin were going to stop in Missouri to see our dear friends, the Erwin family.  We took off in the afternoon and split the drive to Missouri into two days, of course I found us a cheap motel to stay in.  Despite the price, it wasn’t terrible – two beds and breakfast, what more can you ask for?

Evening chores.
Evening chores.
Hello beautiful.
Hello beautiful.

We arrived at the Erwin residence late in the afternoon as we trusted our GPS to take us into the back country!  We were greeted with hugs and smiles an enjoyed excellent company.  We caught my dad stealing their home decorations.  Hahah, Curty played a trick on mom and I and waltzed into the kitchen, saying, wow isn’t this cool, with a wall sign in his hand.  Mom and I looked at each other with big eyes, and immediately told him to put it back on the wall.  Turns out it was a gift, and he was pulling our leg, as usual! The Erwins also gave me a baby ring to celebrate our new addition.  It is so neat and sits perfectly on my fingerprint necklace that Joel’s friends gave our family.  My little Joels are now always with me, close to my heart. What a neat family tradition, and I’m so thankful to be a part of it!

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Feeding the bulls, I kept my distance.

 

That evening we were able to meet their extended family including children, in-laws and grandchildren! It was so nice to be able to finally meet the people behind the stories and photos that we shared with one another!  Dad and I were able to head out to the barns for a bit to see the horses and check on the new calves, it was so much fun and reminded me of home.  How I miss those familiar farm smells.  We also sat down for a fantastic dinner. I don’t remember the last time I ate that much. It included a tender beef roast and cheesy potatoes with cornflakes – SO GOOD. The night finished with lemon bars and great conversation.

Checking on the calves!
Checking on the calves!  All smiles from this girl. 
Good evening mama.
Good evening mama.

In the morning, I woke up to the smell of bacon – heaven. We sat around for a delicious breakfast and coffee with their grandchildren and son who couldn’t make it the evening before. Their grandson really wanted to ride the pony, and was dragging around his stuffed horse throughout the house, careful to tie it up before he went down into the basement.  I used to do the same when I was little, but my horse was imaginary or a red wagon on a lead, so at least he upgraded to a stuffed animal!  Finally before we left, we were able to take a tour of the land and see the different rolling pastures. It was a fantastic visit, and I feel so fortunate that I was able to squeeze it in before Andrew arrived.  Thank you so much for the amazing visit!

Baby love.
Baby love.

We had to leave a little after noon to get back to Wisconsin.  I had a date with Becca and Lyssa.  Becca was celebrating her bachelorette party before she was officially off the market and Lyssa was going to be in Madison for the evening!  The final day in Wisconsin consisted of Bailee’s wedding shower in Seymour.  It was a packed schedule, as always when I visit home, but I was so happy that I was able to partake in some of Bailee’s wedding festivities, since Drew was due just a few days before her wedding!  What are the chances?!

My absolute favorite photo, now isn't this adorable.
Now isn’t this adorable, his feet ALMOST reach… so close!  One day Drew will have to learn to ride!

 

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