Category Archives: minnesota

Minnesota Nice…

In the past 10 years that we’ve lived in Minnesota, I have struggled to make friends.  The majority are all through my husband and time and time again I’ve heard how hard it can be to make friends in this state when you’re an outsider.  It’s all true.  This little saying?  “Minnesotans will give you directions anywhere except their own house.”  It’s totally true, and disheartening. I learned semi-quickly that when a Minnesotan says, “We should get together!” or etc. they don’t always actually mean that. Quite often they’re just saying it…. Surprise! While I might have an easier time if I wasn’t a full-time working mom, I struggled when we originally moved here and then became distracted with other things. Then things settled down, the kids got older and once again I knew I needed to make my own friends that weren’t all inherited from my significant other.

However… judging from various articles, Reddit threads, you name it… it seems like it will not get easier anytime soon and that I should expect it to take years before I can expect to be welcomed into a pre-existing group.  Seriously?  Really?  Even though we got along great and have lots in common??   I’m beginning to think moving back west sooner rather than later is a more attractive idea.  I don’t think I can handle the extra added stress of basically trying to ace an interview every interaction in the hopes I’ll be accepted into a group. Of course friendships take time, I just didn’t realize it would take years to get out of the “acquaintance” category.  I’m probably better off trying to find other people who are not from here either. Or, I guess there is always the option of moving to a friendlier, more open city, which is definitely something I’ve been thinking of lately.  I used to be worried about the kids adjusting, but I’m sure they’d be okay and maybe an adventure in the next few years is just what we need.

All this to say… don’t be so hard on outsiders.  You know, some are pretty nice and worth getting to know. Who knows, you could even end up with a lifelong friend.

Not all Minnesotans are this way, of course. I have met Minnesotans who are not just friends with a small clique that they probably grew up with, or if they are still friends with that same group, they still manage to open their arms to someone new and allow them to leave the ranks of semi-acquaintance fairly quickly.  These people are rare and fantastic finds.

Currently…

Is this a return to blogging?  Not sure yet.  Either way… it’s something.

Currently :

Reading… The Dog Stars, The Arthurian Saga (on Book #3)

Watching (on TV)… The Second Season of a Handmaid’s Tale, The Curse of Oak Island

Playing… Don’t Starve, Stardew Valley, The Forest and as of tonight, Detroit : Become Human!!

Listening to… A variety of tunes, can’t seem to make up my mind what I want to hear, so I listen to everything on Spotify.

Drinking… Too much coffee, Sparkling water, Dark beers, Sweet wines

Eating… A few too many snacks of late.  Gotta switch it up!  Craving lots of grilled veggies and stuff, though!

Planning… Some fun crafts/cosplays, creating an outside living space on our deck

Wearing… Summer clothes!! I think we skipped spring entirely…

Enthusiastically… Picking up my camera again here and there, getting outside, finding myself in things that I love (dancing, baking, reading, creating, and so many other things).

Trying… To create better habits and routines.  I’ll get there.

Looking forward to… Summer activities like camping, pub crawls, picnics, yard work, Ren Fest, hikes, fairs, the works.

Enjoying… My weekly pole classes.  I need to push myself to be better about practicing during the week at home, though.  It’s my favorite time to just be myself and get away from everything. I’ve always enjoyed dance.

Disliking… The Freaking Frustrating Formidable Fours.  Who knew my little lady would develop such sass and attitude over the past couple of months?  I’m hoping a switch flips when she hits five.  Oy vey.

Feeling… “… stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread.”

Impromptu Nature Walk

When you get thrown gorgeous weather in September, you take advantage of it, so even though we were going to spend last Saturday cleaning and organizing, I talked everyone into going on some walks at a nearby Reserve!  It was one of my best ideas and despite some bug bites, I think everyone had a really good time.

We went to the nature center first to check in and get an idea of what was in the area, which led us to their outdoor play area.  We told the kids they could play for a while, but then we’d have lunch and do some exploring!

We were even joined by a little slug at one point!  It was fun just watching him creep along and then Enzo gave him some of his apple.

Have I mentioned that the day was beautiful?  Because the weather was amazing!  It was so nice to just leisurely stroll and see what kinds of fun things we could spot.  Enzo even saw a fish pop up to eat a bug when we stopped at one of the lake docks!

With so many different potential trails to go on, we chose one that had a boardwalk through a wetland area.  Considering we forgot bug spray, it probably wasn’t our greatest decision, but thankfully the mosquitoes haven’t been as bad this year as they usually are. We survived to tell the tale!

I was the one lagging behind for most of the day.  I am at my happiest in the woods, though, and I was soaking it in.  Plus, there were a lot of things to see!  Spider webs stretching across the trail over our heads, fungi and so many pretty flowers.

Now, this flower I thought for sure was a fungi, but it turns out it isn’t!  It seems to be most commonly known as Ghost Plant or Indian Pipe and is part of the blueberry family!  It looks so white because it has no chlorophyll and is a non-photosynthetic plant. Because it doesn’t photosynthesize, it’s basically a parasite that lives off of other plants like trees.  Anyway, it was the first time I had ever seen them and they really are kind of eerie growing in the darker shaded parts of wooded areas.

Just as we were headed on our way back to the nature center, we (or rather Josh) spotted a fantastic prairie area that we naturally just had to go explore. There was a breeze, and better yet, no mosquitoes, but it was nice to just see the prairie grasses wave in the wind and watch bees flit from blossom to blossom.

I’m pretty sure we’ll back.

Renaissance Festival Time… Again!

I know, wasn’t I just at the renaissance festival? Yes, it’s true, but this time I dragged Josh and the kids along wit me, and honestly? I could go again. There’s so much to see and with each weekend being a different theme there is always something new to see.  We all got dressed up and had a fairly decent time, all things considered.  The kids getting older, is such a huge plus and makes outings so much easier.  I think we may have to ditch the wagon next year, however, because they are outgrowing it and there were too many “She’s touching me” outbursts for my liking.  Truly, though, the kids had a magical time and I love seeing how kind everyone is to the kids.  Phoebe was so excited about seeing mermaids and Enzo, while not quite as enthusiastic about such ventures still managed to enjoy himself quite a lot.

We go to Fairy Forest every time. The kids rushed past the fairies this time… mostly because Phoebe really just wanted to wait in the very long line to see the mermaids. Haha!

We didn’t see any unicorns, but Phoebe found a unicorn horn that she just had to have.  I indulged because… hello? Unicorn horn?

We ran into so many nice people.  I think all of us had our photos taken by random people at least once, if not more for the kids. I love the overall atmosphere of the festival because everyone is generally just there to have a good time and indulge in some imaginative fun.  One girl (who didn’t work there) was dressed as Ariel from the Little Mermaid and she could not have been sweeter to Phoebe who recognized her and asked to say hello.  She gave her a big hug and it was so sweet!

You can see how excited Phoebe was to finally see the mermaids and more importantly, ask them their names.

Someone gave us the great idea of having Josh wait in line for the mermaids while I took the kids next door to play dress up… which they didn’t care about.  Tough customers, these ones.

The kids were intrigued, but a little nervous around the dragon. Enzo opted to stand back with Josh while I held Phoebe’s hand.

Josh and Enzo went on a swing ride – the one thing Enzo requested to do as we were walking around.

I tried to take photos with Phoebe while we waited for them, but she decided to be pouty. Ha!

The kids were getting tired, so we took Phoebe over to the elephants and Enzo and I tried to get a glimpse of the joust, but alas, there were too many people ahead of us and we couldn’t get a good spot to squeeze in as we were dragging the wagon with us.

All in all, a very good day.  We got in the car, drove to get ice cream and collapsed when we get home.

Don’t you love how both the boys have similar expressions, whereas Phoebe and I could have kept going?  So weird that Phoebe is so much like me and Enzo is so much like Josh.  Phoebe and I love our excursions and could generally be out of the house all day on a weekend, but the boys get tired and would rather play video games at home. Not this time, boys!

Week In Review – Make that Two…

Happy Monday!

Linking up with Meghan from Clean Eats, Fast Feets for another Week in Review!

I ended up not doing a week in review last Monday since it was a holiday and I had the day off and usually don’t blog on those days.  So… that means this week in review has double the fun!  Honestly, though, it’s been a nice mix of productive, restful, and fun.  I think I’m trying to fit in as much as possible while it’s so nice out.

Starting things, out we had a busy, but fun Labor Day weekend.  I talked Josh and the kids into dressing up and going to the Ren Fest and we had a great time.  Every year gets a little bit easier with the kids as they are able to walk more and enjoy exploring and people watching.  More on that later…

Then the kids and I had a play date with a friend and three of her boys.  The kids had a good time hanging out while Josh and some friends hung out at our house playing video games. We were able to hit up a splash pad and I am so happy that swim lessons has given them more confidence and there were no tears when water got in their eyes!

The guys continued game play well into the wee hours of the night, so I had some hang out time by myself once the kids went to sleep.  Can’t argue with that too much.

My shadow joined me as she usually does.

This past week we have finally gotten a few things put away and rearranged.  It really is never ending.  We also filled a few bags with stuff to donate, which is always a good feeling. Somehow Enzo still had size 2T pants in the back of his drawer.  Whoops!  Thankfully Phoebe was more than happy to claim some of Enzo’s hand me downs, but with how fast they’re growing, I had to make use of some Labor Day sales to start stocking their closets for cooler weather. Someone is just as excited as her mama about unicorns.

I had every intention of spending all of this weekend being super productive, but amazing weather on Saturday was calling me and I dragged everyone on a nature walk, which ended up being a fantastic idea. Aside from some bug bites, it was a great day and we will absolutely be hitting up these trails again.  There were these fun floating boardwalks that the kids loved and some flora that was completely new to me.

Now, to make this week more productive and I’m going to start my evening off right by hitting the gym later!

Have a fabulous week everyone!