Thursday, July 9, 2020

Max's Birthday Weekend


Naturally we were ready for one of our typical Iowa day trips and the first with a puppy in tow! Zeus has quickly become attached to Max since Max takes care of him the most. With it being Max's birthday weekend, Max got to choose our activities and he was eager to choose places Zeus could come too. It took a bit of researching to make sure dogs were allowed in the places we wanted to go. We also had to keep weather in mind--it's been hot and humid. A bit too hot for a doggie. 

For our weekend adventures, Max started us off at Dolliver Memorial State Park near Fort Dodge, Iowa. This has been on my list of places to visit and it is sooo worth it! We mostly did creek hiking/walking to keep everyone cool, but we didn't get far since we had a 9 week old puppers to consider. The good news in this is that Zeus LOVED creek walking and did a stellar job for such a young pup! I foresee many great adventures in our future.

Zeus doesn't particularly love car rides. We spent the week in between the boy's birthdays going for short drives every night to get him used to the car. I'm not sure if that's what helped, but Zeus did awesome in the car! He slept most of the time in the car, but we learned to travel during his "nap times." I'm keeping this trick in mind for future road trips.

The one hiking trail we were interested in followed a creek. Zeus jumped right in, rock scrambled, and explored like a champ. Zeus walked a little bit on the trail, but he was carried most of the way. We walked maybe a half of a mile, he was carried for nearly all of it. 

This place was so neat. We have plans to come back and creek hike again when Zeus is older. I was impressed how clear the water is--something unseen here in Iowa!

Catching minnows and tadpoles in their hands.

Under a canopy of trees he decided he was done...because I wouldn't let him jump in the random weeds behind him. Then he was upset that the boys walked on a fallen tree with out him.

A quick crash before going to the other part of the creek for swimming. This area was deeper, so he spent most of his time on the shoreline.

This was probably the minis favorite part. Small rapids so they could slide down the rocks. They said this reminded them of the waterfall slide in Tennessee (read about that here from four years ago).

A water snake kept Matt and Max entertained for a while.

We stopped for a late lunch in Fort Dodge. The minis decided on Culver's. Before hitting the highway, we drove around FD while we ate and looked at the mural on a silo. Super cool!

Enjoying the moon roof while we were parked.
My children: What is on the window?
Me: Bird poop.
Boys (cracking up): It looks like sperm.

This is my life.
We had just enough time to go home, shower, and hit the road again. This time we went to Newton, Iowa to go to the drive in. This was the minis very firt time at a drive in theater and I hadn't been since I was kid! So much fun! A big bonus because they were playing one of our Disney faves: Zootopia.

The drive in was reservation only and distanced all of the cars. The bathrooms and concessions were open, but we chose not to get snacks (we brought our own). Perfect night despite the heat and humidity we had to sweat through while we watched.

He wants her sandwich and scrunchie.
We brought his beds, so he could fall asleep. He slept through the entire movie.

Our initial plan for Sunday was to hike at Voas Nature Center, but we were all wiped from our late night at the drive in. Instead, we stuck around home, played, and had visits from grandparents. We were all masked and socially distanced because I got the call (it's the call and not a call because let's be real, we knew a call like this was coming) that two daycare kids were being tested for Covid.

Max requested a champagne cake. His initial thought was to make it himself, but our busy weekend didn't allow for cake baking. The Bake Shoppe in Windsor Heights got our order in and made a delicious (and gorgeous cake) on short notice!

Pokemon cards and hiking shoes.
I love that he actually paused and thought about his wish!

Driveway playing. They were playing "vacation" and set up a picnic at a rest stop. One thing we haven't done!

Puppy runs through the hose (every day, multiple times per day). Puppy then runs through mud (every day, multiple times per day). Puppy gets cuddles whether he likes it or not.

I was not ready for this picture: "I'm going to be driving soon mom." 

Because of the Covid testing and health department regulations, I had to close daycare Monday. An unexpected three day weekend, but I had to spend most of Monday cleaning, sending emails, and calling the health department. If I haven't said it, I'll say it now: being a business owner during a pandemic is stressful and NOT fun.

The kids and pup had fun in the sprinkler all afternoon though.

I managed a late afternoon rest. It was well deserved.

This one with his new best friend. I think Max had a very memorable birthday weekend!