Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The big spring break trip

Many weeks ago, Dave and I went to Lake City, Minn., for our spring break trip. This year, our spring break budget was limited, so an overnight road trip was all we got. And unfortunately, the "spring" weather hadn't quite made it's way to Minnesota yet. It was rainy with snow flurries. Fun, huh?

Lake City is like one of many small, vacation destination towns in Minnesota where it triples in size during the tourist season. Well, a Sunday in early March isn't exactly tourist season. So many of the gift shops weren't open. But I can see why this would be a fun place to visit in the summer. It's situated on Lake Pepin, which is a big lake in the Mississippi River. (I don't really understand how you get lakes within rivers -- since it's all one body of water, my simple mind would think that Lake Pepin is really still the Mississippi River -- but I won't get into a geography debate here.) Lake City is famous because it's the birthplace of waterskiing. It's also the town that my father-in-law grew up.

Here's his old house

Dave and I thought Pappy would appreciate the big Obama poster that's still hanging in the window four months after the election. ;)

Here are my grandparents-in-laws. We searched through town to find the cemetery, where we searched a little more to find their grave. After a phone call (or two), we finally found them! It was my first time visiting their gravestone.

Those are Dave's feet -- not mine.

Lake Pepin is also famous for all the bald eagles the live there. Here's a real geography lesson for you. There is a river that flows into the Mississippi just south of Lake Pepin. The heavy current that occurs causes the water to be open all winter long (it doesn't freeze over with ice), and therefore the eagles can stay in the area all winter and don't have to fly south to a place with water. Dave and I drove down to Wabasha (where Grumpy Old Men was filmed) to visit the National Eagle Center. This place was awesome and one of the highlights of our trip! (yes, we're dorks.) We got to get our photo taken with a real bald eagle and we learned a ton about eagles, so I'm going to dedicate a future blog post to the National Eagle Center. (Yes, I know you can't wait to read all about it! But it'll be worth the wait.)

That's a real eagle. It's not a parrot, and has super-strong they don't go on the shoulder.

The other highlight of our trip was the b&b we stayed in, The Frog and Bear Bed & Breakfast, specifically. It was such a cool old house filled with antiques and frogs and bears everywhere. My sister, Stevie, would love all the bears! We were the only guests, so we had this big house to ourselves. I dream of living in a big old house someday -- with a big front porch for my rocking chair -- so this was like living the dream (except it was a little cold to be sitting out on the front porch). The innkeepers where spectacular and so hospitable. The actually live in the basement, although we didn't see them at all. They took care of the details, which made us feel like we were special guests. When we came back from dinner they left us a bottle of wine and chocolate truffles right outside the door to our room. Which we consumed while watching "Three Men and a Baby" -- they had a bunch of movies to choose from downstairs and that's the one we choose. haha.

@ The Frog & Bear

But of course, the highlight of the b&b was the breakfast! We awoke to a five course breakfast in the dining room with a fire in the fireplace. And it was all served to us course by course. Fresh juice and tea. Delicious popovers with homemade jams. Fresh fruit with whipped cream. Waffles. Wild rice sausage. And a sundae!!! For breakfast!

Our stomachs were full for the rest of the day. We left Lake City in the late morning and walked around Red Wing for a little while (another small town with lots of antique stores...and famous for its shoes and pottery). Then we missed our dogs a lot, so we picked them up (Otis was at my sister's and Cooper was at my parents') and just relaxed with them at home with everyone taking a nap on the couch.

Visiting a bed & breakfast was #98 on my list of 101 in 1,001. We had a fun time and it's something I definitely want to do again.


  1. Wow! Thanks for posting those pictures. I had never seen Dad's old house, and I certainly hadn't seen the gravestone(s) before. Looks like you had a lot of fun on your "spring" break :)

  2. Wow looks like you guys had a great trip, and got to see lots of cool things.

  3. Looks like a good spring break!


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