As I mentioned recently, life has begun again for me after a rough few years. Coming through it, things have definitely changed in my life - for the better. The main thing is that I resumed the life I had prior, the one I had envisioned for myself. One where I travel - near or far, get together with my friends more often, take care of myself, get outside as much as possible, and spend quality time with my family. To that end, I guess I've been making up for lost time. I've been busy, without a doubt.
In mid-December, I drove down south to Missouri to spend a weekend with my friend Audrey. She, her sister, and some of their friends get together once a month for game night and she had been wanting me to come down for it for quite some time. I was glad I could make it and had a lot of fun.
The following weekend was Christmas weekend. In years past, for many years in a row, I, my ex-husband, and our kids would spend a weekend in Platte River State Park sometime during the holidays. We'd rent the one cabin in either one of our two favorite pods that had a fireplace and just enjoy being out in the woods. We didn't do this for 2019, 2020, or 2021 - for obvious reasons - but resumed this year.
It was a blisteringly cold weekend so we hunkered down with food, gifts, and plenty of games.
I woke up to a beautiful sunrise coming in the window.
I started homeschooling my daughter in January, so we took a field trip to Kansas City to learn about the Maya. Union Station had an incredibly cool exhibit on the ancient tribe and we both found it fascinating.
The day after we returned home was NYE and I had a little get-together at my place to mark the occasion. Audrey even came up for the evening and she and I managed to make it up past midnight. We were pretty proud of ourselves.
In the middle of January, I made the short drive over to Lincoln to spend a long weekend with my son. He's 23 now and has his own apartment there (instead of the student share he's been doing the past few years) so I made a goal of getting up there once a month. We always have a lot of fun together and this visit was no different.
The next weekend saw bad weather and a trip up to my Dad's.
The weekend after that was the first weekend in February, which just so happens to be one of my best friend's birthdays. So I drove up north to spend the weekend with Amy and to celebrate her birthday, of course. On top of the Iowa Scenic Byways Passport I started last year, I also downloaded the Iowa Beer, Iowa Wine, and Iowa Distillery passports.
Our first Birthday stop was at Wise I Brew Co. in Le Mars, Iowa. These digital passports provide discounts for nearly every location on them, and we each got a dollar or two off our first drink.
I got The Cure Vol. 4, an absolutely stunning sour, while Amy got the Salty Sailor, a pleasant cider.
Next, we visited the Oscar Carl Vineyard just outside of Sioux City, Iowa. The passport discount was $2 off a wine flight. I picked Wiolet, Loesscato, and Jerry Wane. Delicious!
Our last stop of the evening was at Jackson Street Brewing where I got a glass of Roman Garden. I have to say, I enjoyed every drink we had this day - I think a true first in quite a long time.
The following weekend I finally got some big projects done around my place along with a good deep cleaning. It was exhausting but nice to get things taken care of, like the following.
I bought a couple of legit shelving units for my storage unit. My daughter and I put them together, cleared out the unit, cleaned things up, got rid of a bunch of things, then reorganized everything into a space that's tidy, not overcrowded, and where everything can be found easily.
To celebrate all my hard work, my friend Jayne and I headed down to Glenwood, Iowa, to cross another brewery off my Iowa Beer Passport, Keg Creek Brewing Co. They only had a couple of brews that I wanted to try, which worked perfectly with the $2.50 off two drinks coupon that came with the passport.
We ended the evening at a local bar where we sang karaoke. The same karaoke where I got covid from the microphone back in November of 2020. And guess what? I got sick again from the same damn microphone, only this time from the flu. I guess that's my sign to never sing karaoke there, ever again. That sickness put me down for the next two weeks and today is the first day I've felt largely okay in that time.
And that's what I've been up to lately. The weather is warming up again this week and there are some busy weekends coming up. I'm looking forward to it.
Until later, friends!