Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Not Sitting Still

We have been busy up here in the Northland: the same week our new carpeting was installed, we also got the pickup back from the body shop (they did a great job).  Then we had overnight company for a couple of nights.  Paige’s former co-workers, KJ and Rob, came to spend some of their hard-earned vacation time here with us.  Later we decided to call this time “training for them as how to live like retired folks”.  During their visit, we took a day trip to Ely.  It is not at the end of the world, just the end of the highways in northern Minnesota.  North of here is canoe country.

After their return to the work-a-day world, we added another labor saving device: a powered door opener on our garage/storage building.  Bob has put in many of these in the past but this was the hardest to complete because of some binding in the tracks that had to be adjusted out.

Last weekend summer finally got here to Makinen.  It was so hot and humid (compared to normal) that we actually turned our A/C in the motorhome on for about an hour one evening.  Paige’s mom came for an overnight visit and stayed two nights to enjoy the hot weather.  The forecast was for continuing humidity into Monday, so we took another road trip, this time along Lake Superior’s north shore to Naniboujou Lodge, near Grand Marais, and Grand Portage National Monument near the Canadian border. 

Both were historical and quite interesting (especially the dessert at the lodge).  For more details see       and

The return trip along the shore was cool, where the fog was rolling in, and hot away from the big lake. 

We are planning another touristy trip in early August when we plan to take Valentina to Winnipeg for a few days.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Getting There

Things are happening up here, slowly.  This is being written on Tuesday morning and our new carpeting should be delivered and installed later today.  We have spent weeks slowly cutting out pieces of the old stuff and sanding the subfloor to get it acceptably clean.  Yesterday all furniture was removed and we re-touched some of the early sanding.
It has been quite a bit of work, but should be worth it.

Meanwhile, the auto body shop still has our truck.  They had first tried to repair one of the doors, but later decided to replace it instead.  This means more time will be needed to have the replacement delivered.  We should learn soon when they expect to finish.

While all this has been going on, we have had some visitors.  All of our granddaughters and Dave’s blended family were here for the long 4th of July weekend, with Brett’s girls spending an extra day before going home on the 6th.  While they were here, Olivia and Anna participated in the local Cabin Circle Run/Walk with Anna taking First Place in the Youth Runner category.  Our neighbors took Sophie and Anna water skiing for the first time.  Sophie almost got up and Anna got up and took one spin around the lake. 
Unfortunately, the weather didn’t allow another attempt over the weekend.  Then there was the epic water balloon flight with our 5 girls and the neighbor’s 25 year old son.  It was a very busy, fun time! 
They haven’t been our only visitors: the Hilmos, our Nomads friends, stopped for a one-day visit late last week, and former co-workers and friends KJ and Rob will be here next week.
When we arrived here with the motorhome back in May, we endured quite a bit of rain.  The last 2 miles were muddy and sandy, so the Journey looked pretty rough for quite awhile.  It took us 2 days to get it looking good again, with the pollen off the top and the mud off the bottom.

Although Brett’s dog, Stella, has returned home, we have kept up our 2-mile walks around the neighborhood.  It’s a good routine to get into!

On Thursday, Paige’s mom has her 86th birthday.  Her sister, Pam (who is retiring August 7th – yippee!), will be in Duluth, so we will be taking Mom out for lunch.  So happy to have these opportunities!

PS (Thursday): Here is the finished flooring: