Crazy Whirlwind Days in Wisconsin

Posted by on December 18, 2017
We have been crazy busy since we touched down at the airport in Madison on Wednesday the 13th.

Yummy lunch

Dan, Amanda, Ben and Zoe picked us up at the airport (Alex was at school) and we headed straight to ‘That BBQ Joint‘ for some lunch.  Michael and I ordered a pulled pork sandwich and a brisket sandwich and then cut them in half and each had half of each sandwich.  While they were both tasty…I think that I preferred the brisket a bit more.  It was thinly sliced and piled high.  Yum.

Brrr….it’s cold in Wisconsin!

We got home not long before it was time to meet Alex at the bus stop (I’d promised that I’d meet him).  While he originally said hugs and kisses had to wait until we got home he came running off the bus and I got a big hug and even sneaked a kiss in too!

Dribblin’ Alex

That evening Alex had basketball at a local elementary school so we all piled in the car to watch him play.  His Aunt K, Uncle Zack and cousins Paityn and Cameron came to watch too!

Afterward we all went back to Dan and Amanda’s and visited for a while before it was time for all of the kids to head for bed.   A busy and full day but worth every tired bone in my body.

Mama & Zoe during dance class

Thursday had us off and running again.  While Michael stayed home and worked on leads he’d received and returned calls I went with Amanda and Zoe to Zoe’s dance class.  So cute watching five 2 and 3-year-old little girls ‘dance’.  While Zoe liked doing anything that involved props…she didn’t want to have anything to do with any activities that did not involve props.  LOL

Zack and Mike figuring things out…

Michael and I went over to Zack and Kelsea’s new home about noon so that Michael could help Zack determine what he needed for a project that Michael will be working on while we’re at their house next week.  Zack gave us a tour of the house and shop.  They really have a nice space away from town with plenty of room for the kids and pups to roam.

Zack even made lunch for the four of us (Kelsea works from home now) and it was nice to have adult time with just the four of us while the kids were both at school.

The four oldest working on the ‘seek & find’ books Nana & Papaw brought them.

That evening, Zack, Kelsea and the kids came over to Dan and Amanda’s for dinner.   Sure was nice to have all of my grandbabies sitting around the dining room table!  After dinner the five kids played while five adults (Amanda was at a neighborhood craft night) played some Hand and Foot.  We didn’t get much in before it was time to get the babies to bed so that they were ready for school in the morning.

It’s a wrap!

Amanda and I did a bunch of Christmas wrapping on Friday.  I’d had all of our gifts sent here, which left me with a huge mound of items to wrap.  Amanda had her share of wrapping to do and when she finished she helped me with mine.

While we wrapped, Michael and Dan worked.  Michael for Performance Trailer Braking…Dan for MobileFuse.

Alex and Papaw enjoying a nightly read.

Alex (kindergarten) is learning to read and doing exceptional.  He brings a new book home each night and reads it before going to sleep.  Nana and Papaw have been lucky enough to share his reading a couple of nights since we’ve been here.

Ben asked that I go with his mom to pick him up from school so I joined her and while we were out we picked up some lunch from Panera (Ben’s favorite) to enjoy back at home.  Michael and Dan took a break long enough to eat lunch and then we all went back to our various tasks.

Everyone, except for Ben who was under the table cuz he didn’t want his picture taken.

That evening brought all of us back together again when we got together for a fish fry at Quivey’s Grove.  Michael and I had been there years ago and enjoyed it.  There are two restaurants on site.  The Stonehouse is more upscale than the two, set in an old mansion.  The Stable Grill (where we ate) is an old stone stable.

Most everyone got fish, except Dan who got steak.  While the fish was good I think the general consensus was we’d keep searching for a ‘really good’ place for fish.  On the other hand, Dan really enjoyed his steak.

Canasta

After dinner we took a quick drive through a couple of communities around Dan and Amanda’s home to check out the Christmas lights and then went back to the house to finish off the night playing Canasta (adults) and watching movies (the grandbabies).

Saturday was another busy day.  l worked on wrapping more presents and ended up running out of labels before finishing everything.  However, I only have a few left to finish and then I’ll be all caught up.

Busy guys…

Dan and Michael worked on installing a humidifier on the furnace.  Michael spent about ten years working at a heating and cooling business back in the 90s so he’s had lots of experience installing furnaces, air conditioners, humidifiers etc and was able to share his knowledge with Dan.

Me and my middle big brother, Rick

In the early afternoon, Dan and I headed out on a road trip to visit my brother, Rick and his daughter Desiree who live in Hartland, about an hour east of Dan’s home.  Desiree was just leaving for work when we arrived so we didn’t get much time to visit with her.  We spent a couple of hours chatting with Rick and he showed us around his home.

Dinner with my favorite adults

Unfortunately, we were on a time line and had to end our visit after just a few hours as we were meeting Michael, Zack, Kelsea and Amanda in Fort Atkinson to attend the play Miracle on 34th Street at the Fireside Dinner Theater.

Dan and I arrived at the theater about 20 minutes after the rest of the crew which gave them a little time to wander the various gift shops in the lobby of the theater.

Chicken Picata

Chicken picata was the dish that came with our dinner but for an additional charge you could order other dishes.  Zack and Amanda stayed with the chicken picata while the rest of us order other entrees – Dan and Mike both went with a fillet, I ordered the Hawaiian ribeye and Kelsea had a filet and shrimp.  The meal also came with an appetizer of bruschetta baskets, mushroom or french onion soup, an Orchard salad and red velvet cake for dessert.

While some of the menu descriptions were a bit daunting for many of us we were all pleased with our choices and even went outside the box in trying things we might not have done otherwise.

Ready for the play to begin…

The play started shortly after 7:30 pm.  We made it to our seats just minutes before show time and settled in to enjoy the show.  The theater is set up so that the stage is in the middle of the room and the seating is on all four sides of the stage.  Actors enter the stage area via four aisles that end at the four corners of the stage.  A circle in the center of the stage raises and lowers, also allowing actors and props to enter and leave the stage.

I really enjoyed the play (a musical) except for the BIG guy in front of me that caused me to have to lean left or right to see around him.  I’m pretty sure that everyone else enjoyed the show as well…at least I hope so.  It ended up to be a pretty long day as the play was over just about 10:00 pm and we still had an hour drive home (Zack and Kelsea had about 20 more minutes added on to that).

My movie watching grandbabies

Sunday morning Nana & Papaw took all five grandbabies to see the movie Ferdinand.  We weren’t quite sure what we were in store for when we decided to take a 2-year-old, two 4 year olds, a 5-year-old and a 6-year-old to the theater without their parents…no need to worry at all!  They were ALL so good and well-behaved.  They chomped on their popcorn and M&Ms and were all engrossed in the movie the entire time.  Miss Zoe (our 2-year-old) stood most of the time but watched the entire movie from beginning to end with no issues whatsoever.  I am one proud Nana!

That afternoon the majority of us piled into two cars and went to watch 5-year-old (6 on 12/20) Alex at his first piano recital.  He played two songs and did really well.  The entire recital took about 45 minutes with about twelve kids involved…some of them were really really good.
Whew…our first five days in Wisconsin have been a whirlwind…I’m sure the next nine will be just as crazy, especially with the holidays in there.

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