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Thursday, June 4

Omaha (Counting Crows)

Omaha, Nebraska.  Council Bluffs, Iowa.  Two states...basically the same town.  Scroll down for units on both Nebraska & Iowa.

Before anyone starts sending us unhappy mail, I'd like to say that while we usually venture a few hours away from the hotel, this particular trip was plagued by tornadoes, flooding, and other severe weather.  Here's what our windshield looked like for the entire drive...with the wipers on high.  There was no venturing off very far with the kids this time.

We picked up some Mad Libs for the kids to keep them entertained (and goofy!) during the ride.  Hey - it counts as grammar, reading, and language arts!  There's Kid Mad Libs, Super Silly Mad Libs (junior), and their favorite - Lego Star Wars Mad Libs.  Those lasted about two hours...
We arrived early, and decided to do a bit of exploring.  Daddy Gypsy is a member of the Scottish Rite, so we popped into the local temple to have a look around and do a bit of socializing.  It gave everyone a chance to stretch their legs.  If you've never been to a Masonic Temple, I suggest doing so for the history and architecture alone.  The oldest was having a grand time exploring various architectural features of the building, while the youngest pored through antique books in the library.  

Don't be put off by all the hype surround freemasonry.  As the hubby says, "Coca-cola has more secrets than the freemasons."
Orchard & Winery
Finally, the rain let up for a bit, so we stopped off at a local place called Ditmar's Orchard.  We weren't sure what to expect, but it was the perfect ending to the day!  The lady that owns it was the embodiment of a working mother...juggling several kids effortlessly while running the orchard and winery.  That's right - winery.  Hot dog for mom and dad!  

The orchard has a large playground - that's fun even when it's wet - and so we sent the kids off to play with the other kids that were out there.  It's nice to watch them making friends wherever we go.  We sampled wine & cheese and toured the orchard.  In the fall, they have a U-Pick for families to pick their own produce.  They also have a lot of locally-made products (jams, jellies, mixes, etc) that are preservative free and very yummy!  If you're going to be in the area, we recommend stopping in here!

Nebraska Unit

Iowa Unit

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