Unfortunately, I had no luck finding invisible aliens. No more yellow sticky notes were found. However, I did find many different kinds of cheeses, and an abundance of fried seafood.
Can you guess where I went?
Yes, that’s right. Iwanski and I traveled beyond the cheddar curtain, to the brat-tastic state of Wisconsin. (That’s “brat,” as in German sausage, not “brat,” as in a naughty child.) We saw my parents and participated in what has been called the “May Birthday Bash.”
Every year, my family holds two “bashes”: a May Birthday Bash, and a January Birthday Bash. This is due to an abundance of January and May birthdays in my family. I have five sisters and two brothers and over twenty nieces and nephews. This results in many birthdays overall…with clusters of birthdays in January and May. Hmmm…if I count back and do the math, I see that the months of May and September were very amorous months. What happened in those months? The beginning of spring-like weather, and the beginning of the school year. Very interesting…
Anyway, I don’t know how these get-togethers became “bashes,” but perhaps it has something to do with the volume of my family’s gatherings. We are not a quiet bunch. This time around, there were only 8 of us in attendance (others were at graduations and other exciting events), and still, I noticed at one point that we were making a pretty good racket. Even the littlest attendee, my nearly one-year-old niece, would pipe up once in a while with a cry of “Aaaaaa!” or “Gout!” (This is her first real word, which we believe is a tribute to her uncle Iwanski.)
The only two birthday attendees were my sister Sheri (whose birthday was a couple of weeks ago) and myself (whose birthday is in a couple of weeks). We got some lovely gifts, and partook in a true Wisconsin delicacy: fried lake perch. Yum! I loves me some fried perch. No, Miss Healthypants was not healthy this weekend.
We missed having the rest of the family there, but we still had fun, and my little niece was all smiles and giggles, making the rest of us smile and giggle a lot. Babies are awesome when they’re happy.
Then my Mom & Dad and Iwanski & I said our goodbyes to my two sisters, brother-in-law, and niece, and headed back to my Mom and Dad’s house for a rousing game of “Personal Preference.”
What’s “Personal Preference,” you ask? Well, it’s only my FAVORITE game. It’s pretty much a “how well do you know the other players” type of game. The person who’s “it” picks 4 cards from a category (the categories are People, Activities, Food & Drink, and Potpourri), and has to secretly put them in order from their most favorite to their least favorite. The other players then have to guess what the person likes, in order from their most favorite to their least favorite. We learned last night that my Dad really likes spy novels, my Mom likes Michael J. Fox, and Iwanski hates cottage cheese and licorice. Pretty random, I know—but interesting. To me, at least. Iwanski pointed out that it was obvious that I should win this game, since I was playing with my parents and my spouse. He wasn’t wrong—we played two games, and I won both. Can you see why I like this game?
So it was a good visit with my family. And on the drive back to Chi-town today, Iwanski and I stopped briefly at the “Bong Recreation Area.” Yes, that’s what it’s really called. Here’s a picture if you don’t believe me.
Iwanski and I had driven past this sign many times, so this time we decided to stop and see what it’s all about. It was a beautiful natural area, and Iwanski found a lovely little trail that was off the beaten path, so we walked a bit. It’s always refreshing to get back into nature when you’ve been in the city for a while. We saw lots of birds, of course, and Iwanski even spotted a huge cocoon filled with probably a hundred little caterpillars. It was interesting, but it makes me itch just to think about it. I’m not really into the creepy-crawly things.
So we enjoyed our little foray into Wisconsin, but it’s always good to get back to our high-rise apartment in the city again…where I’m far away from the creepy-crawly critters.