Monday, September 29, 2014

Vala's Pumpkin Patch

Yesterday we enjoyed a day at the local pumpkin can you spend a day at a pumpkin patch?  Vala's may have started out as a place for the locals to get their fall pumpkins but over the years it has evolved into a kind of country Disneyland!  Yes, you can still take a tractor hay ride out into the pumpkin patch and choose your own pumpkins.  In addition, there are rides and activities for all ages spread out over several acres. There are also little animated shows here and there, live music, and live shows like the Pigtucky Derby!

We spent 6 hours there and did not see everything.  Went with Jen and Jared and their good friends, Angie and Joe. Great family place! Only open in the fall.

Mike, Jen, Jared with Nathan, Angie with Olivia, Joe, and Allie and Jayden

Good buds, Allie and Jayden

Allie on the tricycle course

going into a "mine"

sign said it was not a scary mine but Allie had her doubts....

Nathan hanging around with Daddy

Allie and Jayden ride the ponies

we all took a train ride

Got my own John Deere!

burying Allie in a box of corn

what a cutie!

bouncy pillows, they had one just for adults too!

my son, the horse thief!?

Allie and Jayden intently watching........

the Pigtucky Derby!!!!

Allie got a little carried away!

Grandad and Allie do the big slide....

Allie and Gran convicted of Lollygagging!!

Mom and Son selfie

Tuckered out, but what a fun day!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Durham Museum, Omaha

My brother, Paul, and Mike and I drove downtown Omaha to check out a little culture.  We visited the Durham Museum located in the old train station.  In addition to a wonderful display of old pullman railroad cars, which we got to wander through at out leisure, there were a lot of other great displays dipicting Omaha's history.  The beautiful architecture of the old building was worth going to see all by itself!

After a few hours in the museum, yes there was that much to see, we had to enjoy a beer at the Upstream Brewing Co. and then ate at The Twisted Fork in the Old Market Place...a good day!!  Pics not so good,  forgot my camera and had to use my phone! Ugh!

Paul makes friends easily;)

beautiful building!!!

traveling by train....maybe not so bad!

not too crazy about the berths and the "safety" net!

Old Market Place

 Beautiful downtown park, nice place for an after dinner stroll......

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Desoto National Wildlife Refuge, Iowa

Drove across the Missouri River into Iowa to visit the Desoto National Wildlife Refuge.   Nice place!!!  There is a very spacious visitors center with lots of wonderful, inside, viewing areas that over look the water.  One can see all the migratory birds in comfort in the cold weather.  A very nice set up!

In addition, a huge draw to the visitors center is the display of artifacts recovered from the sunken steamship, Bertrand.  The 165 ft steamboat sank in 1865 with a full cargo of tools and housewares, worth about $100,00 then, and quite a bit of it is on display.  We had a great time wandering through this exhibit!  So many interesting things to see.
Jared, Allie and Mike at the Desoto visitor center

amazing exhibit!  all the artifacts you see came off the Bertrand

These Goodyear rubber raincoats are the only known surviving examples in the world

great views of the preserve from the visitors center

Allie checking out some Canadian Geese

site of the Bertrand excavation. the bulk of the boat was reburied for preservation

US Army Corp of Engineers Park, Iowa City, IA

Mike and I love it when we can find a COE park because they are always on water and our last stop at Coralville Lake was no exception.  A bi...