Friday, June 17, 2011


When you have an alpaca farm (or any farm for that matter) getting time away can be difficult to work out. This is the first year since we started our farm in 2007 that we took an actual family vacation. I don't remember that we took a vacation the summer of 2007, we didn't have our alpacas yet, but we were fixing up barns and putting in pasture, it was a very busy summer. In 2008, we took a few day trips to Lake Michigan. We were so excited about the new cria (alpaca babies) that going away wasn't in our plan. In 2009, our plan was to camp at a local campground (so we could come home everyday and keep on eye on the farm). But as the time got close, J hurt his back and couldn't sleep in a tent. So the kids and I slept in a tent on our land and we drove to the beach most days. Not exactly a get-a-way. The kids and I managed a weekend get-a-way to see my family in the Chicago area. We went for a weekend, but J stayed home to care for the farm. So, it wasn't really a family vacation. Last year, 2010, we used our trip to the National Alpaca Show as our family vacation. We did take the kids and spent some time in Fort Wayne, IN, having fun (we went to the zoo and did mini golf and so forth). The kids still felt they had missed out.

So we made a point to take a real vacation this year. We chose to take the kids to the Wisconsin Dells, where we stayed at the biggest waterpark we could find. There are lots of places to stay in the Dells. We were there in 2003, when Zack was a baby and Emma was 3 years old. Then we stayed in a quaint little hotel that only had a pool (for the Dells *only* a pool is a big differentiation since many hotels have water parks and/or amusement parks). We focused our time during that trip in 2003 on taking different boat rides through the Dells. We spent a day at Devils Lake (a place I camped at when I was a kid), and we spent a day riding a cute kids' train. This time we opted for a huge water park (there are 8 different water parks within the resort we stayed at). Both kids love water parks and water rides. While Emma likes roller coasters too, Zack does not (nor do I) so we didn't go to a place like that since half of us wouldn't enjoy that. But there certainly is a place to stay for whatever your family likes.

We stayed at the Glacier Lodge in the Wilderness Waterpark Resort. I didn't take a lot of pictures because most of the time was spent in the water parks. I'm not one of those parents that sit and watch their kids play, we are the type of parent that is in the water with them the entire time. No time to take pictures. Here is a picture of the entrance sign (I didn't have the kids get in the picture because this was taken the day we left and it was raining):

Since we were at the Dells, we did want to do a few local touristy things. No sense coming all this way and not at least seeing the Dells. So we did take a jetboat ride through the upper dells. Here we are standing with the river and Dells behind us:

Can you believe it, not only did we take a vacation, but there is a picture of me! I usually avoid pictures in every way possible.

Here is Zack in front of the river:

I didn't take any pictures on our speed boat ride because we knew from last time that you do get wet on this ride. I didn't even take the camera with me. Emma didn't believe us that you really would get wet, she was certainly pleasantly surprised.

We also went to a couple fun local restaurants. One night we ate dinner at the Moosejaw Pizza and Dells Brewing Co.. This is a restaurant that is built like a log cabin and has excellent food, they make their own beer and soda. Here are the kids with moose hats:

And we went to Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty. They serve a family style meal set up like a lumberjack camp. Zack was very impressed with how tall Paul Bunyan was:

Zack wondered if Paul's bull, Babe, was like a blue eyed white alpaca (only a child who lives on an alpaca farm would wonder that!).

While we arrived home on Wednesday evening, I took the entire week off of work. I planned to get oh so much done at home, but that hasn't happened yet. There is still today and this weekend. I hope to weed our front flower beds and spin some yarn and ......

1 comment:

Ertman-Trowbridge Family said...

What a great time it looks like you had! I am so glad you were able to spend some time together as a family just having fun.

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