Memorial Day Weekend

Welcome back everyone. This long weekend was great. I felt that some stress needed to be relieved and I felt that this memorial day weekend definitely helped accomplish that. But it still felt too short, it felt like I never even left work. It always tends to happen when we are having way too much fun, doesn’t it? This weekend was special for 2 reasons. The celebration and remembrance of the men and women of the U.S armed forces who gave their lives defending our nations values and its people. It was also Abby’s 28th birthday (old fart).

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We had one of the nicest, most relaxed weekends in a while and also the 5th time ever to not have Eyra with us since she was born, some of you may say, WTF seriously? Yes, seriously! I guess Abby and I like having her (Eyra) around but in this instance Eyra stayed with one of our good friends (Jess). Abby wanted to celebrate her birthday earlier (on Saturday), we decided to go see the new Pirates of the Caribbean; Dead Men Tell No Tales movie and it was interesting. I am sad that Jack Sparrow dies and Will Turner turns into the bad guy while Commodore Norrington comes back to life and marries Elizabeth Swan. I am totally kidding; I wouldn’t spoil a movie like that. Go see it guys, it was OK, but for some reason, in my opinion. Dead Man’s Chest was by far the best one yet out of the entire saga! Abby and I went to Flix Brew House, if you guys don’t know what that is, let’s just say is a combination of brewery/restaurant/movie theater and yes, it’s amazing and very reasonable.

I could not believe how much it rained that day, we left the house to drop off Eyra at our friend’s house and it was raining and the clouds were so dark that it appeared to be 9:00pm instead of 11:45am. Our entire drive from our friend’s house to the movie theater it poured and the visibility was almost none with all the vehicles on the highway splashing all over our windshield but we safely made it to the movie theater. We ate tons of food, until our hearts content and enjoyed a nice Eyra free date. When the movie was over, Abby and I questioned the movie for a bit on our walk back to the car and the weirdest thing happened. The sun was out and not a cloud to be seen! I swear, the weather in Iowa is just as weird as Colorado’s. We picked up Eyra and we thanked Jess and Monty for agreeing to watch Eyra for a couple of hours. We headed home to play with the dogs and to feed them and then decided to go back to Jess and Monty’s again for a great evening.

Eyra played and played. She chased the dogs, she played in the swing, she went down the slide like 50 times. It’s no joke, she literally went up and down the slide numerous times and all by herself which was awesome because she had to climb up some mean stairs in order to get to the slide (very tall and scary) it’s like a small version of Everest but she managed, so props to my young Padawan and let’s not forget the coloring chalk which ended up on Eyra’s mouth a bunch of times until all of a sudden the coloring chalks magically disappeared. We told Eyra that the chalk fairy wanted them back. Sometimes you do what you have to do in order to get a point across.

Some rumor was started that (I) sat down on a farm tractor to embrace the country life…It sounds tempting but that will never happen, I only sat down on the tractor to check the antique gauges that the tractor had and no more, haha, no I really don’t care. I did sit on the tractor and it was fun, I almost took it out for a spin but knowing me I would had destroyed a few things with it along the way. It’s like giving Godzilla some roller skates. I challenged Monty to a game of horse shoes and Aeden, Monty’s son helped me become victorious since he was my teammate but in reality, we had to stop playing because it was getting to dark. Landon (Monty’s other son), Aeden, Jess, Monty, Eyra, Charley, Abby and myself sat next to a cozy fire, star gazed and saw 3 satellites within 30 seconds of each other. It was pretty cool and to think that a couple of hours earlier you couldn’t even see the clarity of the sky because of the rainy clouds. That’s how our night ended, close to an awesome fire.

Sunday was really relaxed, we walked to breakfast and along the way, Eyra became fascinated by rocks that were on the ground, why? I have no idea but I am sure she saw something delicious about the rocks since she decided to put a rock in her mouth. Eyra soon found out that we don’t eat rocks and that came as a shock to her. After the news, the world was ending right there on that exact spot and at that precise moment since Eyra felt devastated about the fact that we can’t eat rocks. She then saw a leaf on the ground and got over the whole rock dilemma.

I felt that we walked a lot that day since my knee is beginning to feel a little better but not all there. Speaking of feeling better, our Teddy is doing so much better and he seems to be back to normal. Teddy had his staples removed and the incision looks great. We are all glad that he is home and doing well, specially Eyra. Most of our day was spent in preparation for our next adventure which is going to be the highlight of our year (travel wise) but that is of course a surprise until you (the reader) get to read firsthand about this sweet adventure.

 

Memorial day was here and so was Abby’s birthday. This will be the 10th time I celebrated Abby’s birthday with her and this year Abby turned 28, as I mentioned before, time sure flies by. Throughout these years, I have seen many physical changes in Abby but her personality never changed, despite her accomplishments both professionally and personally, she became even more humble and motherhood has given her a different type of glow not seen by many, but believe me, I see it every day. That person is my best friend, Eyra’s mommy, and my wife. I can’t wait to celebrate many more birthdays with Abby. I love her and forever will, may God keep her in his grace and bless her always.

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As the day progressed, we decided to get some grub in celebration of Abby’s birthday and also get her enrolled with AARP, I kid. We drove to a mall in Des Moines which is about 45 minutes from our location to pass the time and window shop and also for Eyra to burn off some steam at a cool kid’s playground that the mall has. The playground has numerous foam shaped animals and Eyra was so concerned that other kids were climbing on the poor animals, she climbed on the back on an elephant and pet him and she kept saying “elephant OK” and kissed him. Several kids stepped on a turtle and Eyra lost her cool, she kept petting the “tortuga” as she calls turtles and gave him a kiss and laid next to it. I must say, our parenting is not too shabby.

To end our day, we randomly saw Jack Sparrow. No! we did not watch the movie again, I mean this time we actually saw a random guy who totally nailed the costume and he was super cool. I am not sure what he was doing or why he was dressed as the infamous captain but whatever the reason may be, this guy really looked like captain Jack Sparrow, Eyra wasn’t sure about him since she maintained her distance but overall we had a very relaxing weekend. I wish I could have more weekends like this especially with the perfect weather. I can only hope to have a fast working week because a new adventure awaits us and we are ready for a trip which I am sure will be a memorable one.

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Where will we go next? This trip is a surprise but you will not be disappointed.

To be continued…

 

The mighty Teddy.

Hello and welcome back everyone. This weekend was interesting as well as our entire week. Oh boy! I don’t even know where to begin. For the past 3 months, Abby has become quite the runner and taken fitness to a whole new level. Her level of commitment is beyond words and I am happy to see that every obstacle that gets on her way, she makes it seem like such a breeze and when she feels defeated, she maintains a positive attitude and tries the obstacle again. I wanted to help Abby accomplish that by running all this time by her side, well… She showed me different and things took a weird twist last Monday. I have terrible knees to begin with and I felt an excruciating pain on my left knee about halfway through our run that I haven’t felt in a long time. No, I did not WebMD it since everything on WebMD always turns out to be aids or Zika. In my opinion, I think it’s time to lubricate the joint again and get another fluid supplement injection or who knows, perhaps something a bit more serious (surgery). The whole week I was struggling to get from point A to point B. At work, I am the guy who hardly calls my co-workers but instead walks to my co-worker’s cubicles to be social or ask a question. I try to be more active since I do have a desk job. That was not the case this week. I called and emailed everyone, shoot! I even printed everything on my actual printer from 1998 and honestly I am amazed that the printer actually worked. I tend to print all of my paperwork on a different printer for the same reason, that I need to be more active. I hope I don’t get bad news from the doc next week. I’ll keep you guys posted.

On to the next part of our bad week… Every day during lunch I come home to check on the poochies and spend a bit of time with our three dogs and the only playful one is always Teddy since he is only 4 months old. The other two will forever remain mad at me for forcing a 3rd member into their pack. Tuesday was just like any other day until Abby came home that afternoon. Abby noticed diarrhea and vomit all over the bathroom floor and Teddy was not feeling great. We thought he ate too much or perhaps got a hold of Oreo’s (the older Border Collie) weight loss food and made himself sick, that whole night sucked. Constant crying, diarrhea, vomit and Teddy looked physically terrible. His eyes looked saggy, gums seemed dry and he was definitely not playful at all. Abby made an appointment to take Teddy to the Vet that morning and I took him during my lunch. I am glad we did, otherwise I don’t think we would have had a pooch for much longer. The vet checked Teddy for parvo and he passed, he was checked for rabies and he passed, Teddy’s blood results were a bit concerning, especially Teddy’s million mph heart rate.

The vet felt something odd on Teddy’s belly that prompted him to get some x-ray’s. After reviewing the x-rays, the vet noticed that Teddy’s liver was bigger than the average dog and also he noticed fluid on Teddy’s stomach and of course, he pointed out what he believed to be a foreign object on Teddy’s small intestine. The vet mentioned that Teddy more likely needed surgery but he wanted to tell me first before he proceeded. This decision was a no brainer, we needed to do whatever was possible to make our puppy feel better again. I had to sign a bunch of paperwork, thinking that Teddy was going to an emergency surgery but that was not the case. Since Teddy’s blood work was a bit alarming, the vet decided to give Teddy an IV and bring him back up to a state where Teddy could be a good candidate for surgery and that’s pretty much how it went down.

The following morning, I called the vet at 7:30am to see how Teddy was doing and I received an update that Teddy was being prepped for surgery. About 2 hours later, I received a call from the vet that Teddy’s surgery went well and that Teddy was in recovery. The vet removed 20” of Teddy’s small intestine since it was completely damaged and also found an athletic sock on the inside that definitely belonged to me, I mean WTF Teddy??? Are you a freaking anaconda? How the hell did you swallow that? No wonder you were clogged, literally. I couldn’t visit Teddy that afternoon since he was still out of it but Abby and I were there the following day (Thursday). Teddy was a bit shaken from the situation, you could tell he was very depressed laying on a corner as if we had abandon him but to the contrary. Once he saw us, his spirits were lifted, he was wagging his tail and you could tell that he wanted to come home with us so bad. He got tangled on his IV and as you can imagine, that was not pretty. The vet told us that since Teddy’s surgery was a bit more serious than what he thought it was going to be, Teddy would need to stay a minimum of 10 days to see how he was progressing and to monitor Teddy’s incision since it was bigger than normal (since they had to use staples instead of normal stitches). Check out these pictures (courtesy of Dr. Yoder). DO NOT LOOK IF YOU HAVE A WEAK STOMACH! I repeat: DO NOT LOOK! Pretty gnarly huh?

I honestly had the worst week at work. Nothing and I mean nothing went right. This is where my skills and character were tested and brought me to my boiling point. I don’t want to get into too much detail because personally, I don’t want to bring work into my personal life, what happens at work stays at work but the only 2 things that made my shit week better was a video of Eyra telling me that she loved me and Teddy, with words like that, I don’t think anybody can stay mad or frustrated. Friday afternoon (a mere 2 days after Teddy’s surgery) I received a call from the vet telling me that Teddy was ready to come home. I didn’t even ask the vet any questions and told him that I was on my way. Seconds later I told my supervisor I had to go and left everything on my desk. I walked out like a boss. I called Abby to tell her about the good news, Abby mentioned that she wanted to come with me to pick up Teddy but she wanted to bring Eyra as well. Since Eyra is Teddy’s person (Eyra’s dog) we wanted her to be there. Pictures below are some of Teddy’s memories. (Hiding under our covers, taking a bath with his person, tiring Oreo out and his first camping trip).

Teddy was super excited to see us that he literally peed everywhere (he does that at home anyway), I am just glad that the vet was cool with it and I am also glad that we don’t have carpet at home, otherwise, diarrhea, vomit and pee would make me hate any type of pet. The vet said that he was recovering so much better than they expected and he wasn’t even trying to bite at his staples! Hence the reason we could take him home! So what did we do this weekend? We didn’t do anything as we wanted to take it easy with Teddy. Teddy and Eyra are having a blast together, wherever Eyra goes, that’s were Teddy is. I never would have thought that they (Eyra, Teddy) would miss each other, but life again showed me differently. Those 2 together just crack me up. This is what I don’t understand, Teddy was hours from death ok! The dude decided to go straight to the laundry basket once he was home and what did he get? You guessed right, another f**king sock. C’mon man!!! You my friend belong to the smartest breed of dog in the world, prove me wrong, I beg you. Our room is now off limits to Teddy until we get a taller laundry basket.

Despite a depressing week, I am just glad that we had the opportunity to spend the weekend together as a family, like every weekend and that Teddy is back home healthy…ish and we can only hope that the staples removal goes well on the 30th. Where will we go next weekend? I am not sure but I hope it’s somewhere awesome. Stay tuned.

To be continued…

Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad.

Hello and welcome back everyone, this weekend was a beautiful weekend since the weather God’s favored us with 2 awesome days, I can’t complain about the 90-degree weather and at least it was not humid…yet! Our weekend began by having a friend over and her 3 kids on Friday night. When Abby and I moved to Iowa, Tim and Kalyn were the first couple that we met and it’s great that we have maintained that friendship throughout the years, I say that because the Van Maaf’s no longer live in Pella. Tim’s military career has taken the Van Maaf’s to other locations and this time it may be abroad. Whatever their next adventure takes them, we wish them the best of luck. Eyra was super playful with our guest until she tired herself out, Friday was a record night as she fell asleep the moment we laid her down on her crib. I wish every night was that easy but for some reason, every night is a struggle.

The following day (Saturday) we decided to do something that we have been wanting to do for a long time. Some of our friends told us about this place and I have to agree with most of them, it was for sure a neat experience. Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad! I know people who say that living in the Midwest can get boring, that may be true if they do not look around. Abby and I have been amazed at all the places that we have gone in Iowa alone and the list is still pretty long.

Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad is small in comparison to other museums and attractions along the U.S. It is not the Royal Gorge in Colorado or the Pullman Rail Journey from Chicago to New Orleans but it is the history and the preservation that makes this place special, it’s always amazing to see what small towns have to offer.

Abby booked our reservations and she bought the first class tickets to ride on the train. There are apparently 3 different sections on the train. One section is a complete open train cart that the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad offers so its visitors can enjoy a more scenic adventure while on board. Another section of the train is an enclosed train cart with normal seats and open windows for those hot summer days and the first class section is a climate controlled, double decker train cart and that’s where we were. I can honestly say that; I am glad that Abby booked us on that cart because it was 91 degrees outside.

Eyra enjoyed every minute of the train ride, she went back and forth, switching places with Abby and myself. She laughed, made funny faces, giggled, played, cried on occasion and my all-time favorite, she snuggled a lot.  I never really realized how big the train engines and the carts are until you get on one, I remember getting on a couple of trains from Paris to Barcelona but I can’t remember them being this big, I am sure they were but I never put that much attention to them until now. Abby decided to get her picture taken right next to a train engine to show in scale how big this puppy was.

Once on the train ride, the train didn’t really go fast, we went maybe 15mph or maybe less. The beginning of the ride was a bit rough, overgrown weeds, unpainted houses and rusty train carts but once we got going, the ride turned out to be a fun ride.

You cannot believe how much the train cart rocked from side to side, I felt like I was riding on the back of a pick-up truck on an old county road. There were a couple of times that the rocking caught everyone by surprise. Along the ride, there is a section where the train crosses a bridge and judging by the distance we appeared to be at least 10 stories high above ground. I am so glad that the train wasn’t rocking then, otherwise I would have not agreed to go on the ride at all, I am not scared of heights but in this case if something goes wrong, it would be a shitty way to go.

Abby, Eyra and I goofed off a lot on the ride and at times, we didn’t even look outside of our window, we seemed to focus on ourselves and have fun and there is nothing wrong with that. Every time we saw the river, Eyra would yell “water” and point at it. 2 weeks ago, Eyra got her own teepee in her room and she loves it, mainly because that’s where her stuffed animals chill. Well… Along the ride we saw a teepee and Eyra was so excited when she saw it, all she kept saying was “house”, and she would look at us to see if we saw it. We never thought that Iowa would have this many trees, we said that once before when we camped at Ledges State Park and also when we hiked at Maquoketa Caves but we were left in awe to see how green everything was.

The ride took about 2 hours’ round-trip and it was nice but we were definitely ready to walk around the museum, specially Eyra. The museum was really neat, it talked about the history of the railroad and its impact not just only in the Midwest but around the world. Eyra was of course distracted by some toys and that’s mainly where she stayed until Abby decided to play peekaboo with her. I wouldn’t mind going back since we heard that the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad offered lunch and dinner train rides on its train carts. I do recommend this place, it’s nice, reasonable and most importantly some portion of the money goes to the preservation of this fantastic living museum since the repair of the locomotives can reach $140,000.

Sunday arrived and Mother’s day was here, Eyra bought Abby some awesome roses, one or two roses made it with no pedals as Eyra was plucking them but it was the thought that counted. I made us breakfast (cough, cough), not true, I bought us breakfast that morning and took Abby shopping, it was mainly a relaxing afternoon. Abby is a wonderful mother and a great wife, I know many spouses say the same thing about their partners but Abby is the bee’s knees, she is the cream cheese to my cheesecake and she is Eyra’s absolute everything. To all of the mom’s out there, we wish you an amazing day. One day of appreciation is not enough for all of the sacrifices mother’s make during their lifetime. I love you mom, more than you know.

Where will we go next? Stay tuned.

To be continued…

 

82nd annual Tulip Time.

Welcome back everyone. Tulip Time, the festival that we have been anticipating all this time was finally here and it was for sure a memorable one. Last weekend we (Los Arteaga’s) decided not to write a blog since the Tulip Time festivities commenced on Wednesday May 3rd so we decided to wait an additional 3 days to write a longer blog. The festival kicked off with the annual 5k race known as the Klompen Classic. Tulip Time focuses in the rich traditional Dutch values and let me tell you, I have nothing bad to say about the traditions and the people who make it happen. The Dutch people opened their doors and hearts to us and made us feel welcome and also to be part of their community and for that Abby, Eyra and I are extremely grateful. Klompen or Klompens, are the given name for the Dutch wooden shoes and boy are they hard to walk in. I looked like a person who walked on hot coals, I guess I can say that walking in klompens is definitely not in my DNA. Every year since Abby and I moved here we have decided to walk/run the Klompen Classic, we have taken pictures with our best friends who also happen to be the God parents of our daughter. That being said, we never really planned to take pictures before the race but now, taking pictures beforehand has become a tradition. It’s the small things like this that define strong friendships and also we get to see how we change throughout the years and man do I look more rotund and everyone else looks the same. I better take it easy with all of the tasty Dutch pastries. Abby has been training hard. She is running, lifting and eating healthier, she ran her 5k better than she expected and with great time. Eyra and I were right behind her the whole time and I finished 3 seconds after Abby had crossed the finish line. Abby is hoping to run a half marathon within the next year. Me on the other hand, I went straight to the poffertjes stand. Poffertjes are a small or tiny pancakes but in my opinion, they taste better. No half marathon for this guy. Who knows, I might do it too.

Some unexpected guests arrived to visit. Let me rephrase that, an unexpected family member who I knew nothing about until a few months back, changed my life completely and made me question my entire family history. To make the story short, I have a brother from my biological father, for those who don’t know me, I was adopted at a young age! The story is crazier than it sounds but that would be a story for another time. My brother Edgar and I met in December of 2016, you may think it was by accident but I will like to call it fate. We talk on a daily basis and it’s weird how much we have in common, the similarities are so identical that I freaked myself out when I began to talk about my hobbies and past times. It’s like we knew each other this whole time, that is the scariest part. The past is the past and I don’t care what happened between both of our families, now it’s the time to set aside the differences that our mothers had and move forward with another world of opportunities and to add yet another member to my family.

Our guest arrived on Thursday May 4th which was perfect timing on their end since that’s when the Tulip Time parade makes its way into town. I had originally made camping reservations to one of Pella’s most popular campgrounds but we decided not to go camping since my brother Edgar and his wife Karla were running on energy fumes but toughed it out and saw the night parade with us. Eyra had a blast with Karla and gave her a ton of kisses. Eyra had a few small bites of ice cream prior to the kisses and half of the ice cream that Eyra ate, ended up on Karla’s cheek. It was pretty funny. Is anyone familiar with the story of Wyatt Earp? How about the notorious shooting at the OK Corral? I don’t want to get into too much detail but Wyatt Earp’s childhood home is located a block away from my house and my work supervisor plays Virgil Earp, a brother of Wyatt Earp during the parades, I am not going to lie, he does look pretty bad ass and yes! (The mustache and guns are real). The reason why I mention this is because people who part take in the parade are sure hard to break character and my supervisor who tends to be a good friend made a really cool gesture and broke character to acknowledge that he saw me and my family. If you read this Karl, that was pretty cool of you man!

Friday arrived and work seemed to drag, even more since I had guests at home and I wanted to socialize with them and show them my town. I got lucky and had the chance to go home early. On a typical day, it takes me 5 minutes to drive to work. Yes, it’s rough but I am going to complain! It took me 20 minutes to get home since the traffic was insane and even more so since our house is situated a block away from all of the commotion. I should have taken my bicycle instead but then I realized that I couldn’t have the A/C on specially since it was a hot day so I decided to chill and let the road rage cool down.

The time to eat junk food was finally here! I had to tell my wife to hold me down since I was acting like a kid in a candy store. Summer body gone!!! Haha, I never had one anyway so there was nothing holding me back. If I had to describe my weekend in 2 words, they would be fun & food. It was really cool to see the town through their eyes (Edgar and Karla), I wonder if that’s how Abby and I were when we first experience the festival ourselves. There was just so much to talk about.

We decided to go camping that night since we still had one day reserved. We gathered our gear and drove 2 long miles, haha. Our campground was perfect and right next to the Des Moines River. We had a great fire that Edgar made, and Abby went straight for the s’mores! I don’t blame her since s’mores are da bomb, but I couldn’t take any more food since I had eaten a ton that afternoon. We had a great conversation and we gazed into the clear sky, we saw a couple of satellites and went to bed around midnight. The following morning, we were rudely awoken by people who wanted to take the camping spot. Yes, it was their camping spot but if they actually “read” the reservation confirmation letter, it states that checkout is at 4:00pm, not 7:00am, yeah! I didn’t make friends that morning but guess what? I too made a reservation and I also payed to stay there but the only difference was that I actually read the confirmation letter. Those guys drove pretty pissed off. Oh well. I’m sure they lived.

We packed up our campsite and headed home, we all showered, got non smoky clothes on and headed straight to have breakfast at a local restaurant on Saturday morning. Since Saturday is the last day of the festivities, the amount of people in Pella definitely doubles in size and makes getting around town a bit harder. We all enjoyed our breakfast but Eyra enjoyed building a tower made out of coffee creamers. As we exited the restaurant we noticed that a popular tourist stop which happens to be the local bakery (which is AMAZING) had already a ridiculous long line. We heard a couple of people say similar commentaries “I am not waiting in line for an hour and half to get a pastry now, I can get the same pastry on Monday and my waiting time will only be 5 minutes”. Yeah, I agree with that statement but most of the tourist do not have until Monday to wait!

We headed straight to the windmill museum. 2 weeks ago, Abby, Eyra and I made it to the windmill museum and it was nice and quiet but not this time. This time we had to buy tickets with designated time frames, we bought the tickets for the windmill tour that started at 4:50pm. This time frame was perfect because the parade started at 2:30pm and believe me, even though the parade is similar at daytime in comparison to the parade at night, both of the parades were completely different. I enjoyed seeing both of them but my favorite one was definitely the parade that commenced at 2:30pm. There was more to see and the parade’s detail is better appreciated. The day parade also includes both high school marching bands, and boy are they talented!

Even though our windmill tour was at 4:50pm, we were allowed to go into the historical village before the parade. The village was great, we liked that there was actual people explaining to us with details what it would have been like back in the day, from being a carpenter, to a blacksmith, to a klompen maker. Our afternoon flew by fast and the parade was about to start, we headed to a spot that we had all reserved and we had some prime seats (front row). The people from the parade were amazing, the Dutch costumes were beautiful and all are different because their clothing varies depending on their region. Some people interacted with Eyra and even invited our little one to scrub the streets with them before the actual parade started. Eyra got tired and I could tell the sun was bothering her, so I put her back on her baby carrier and set up the carrier’s hood cover and she was much comfortable, she waved at everyone during the parade. We loved the way the ground shook once the marching band went by, everyone was wearing their klompens and the sound of the wooden shoes was spectacular. We even saw a puppy dressed with her Dutch costume. These people don’t mess around and take their heritage serious. We saw one of our friends, Marlin, in the marching band and boy was she awesome! If I am not mistaken, this is the last year she attends the parade before she is off to college, so this parade was meaningful to her.

Once the parade was over, we headed straight to the to the mill and took the tour, I am pretty sure my brother under estimated the height of the mill until he was at the very top. He was amazed at how tall the mill was. Both Karla and Edgar admired the craftsmanship of the mill and the look on their faces was priceless, our last day together involved more sightseeing and more food. Tulip Time was officially over after the parade later that night.

The following day, our town was quiet and as if no festivities had occurred, the town was shiny clean, no trash was left on the town, the tulips remained in the gardens and the locals resumed living their normal lives as did we. Edgar and Karla returned to Colorado and yes, they will be missed but we plan to see each other soon and onto another adventure. We are yet to decide what we will be doing next weekend but I am sure it will be just as exciting.

To be continued…