Larry & Lee Ann's Journey travel blog

Woke this morning to pretty skies over the lake...

Arrivng at Fred & Chrissy's place...

Love their sign!

And they have a great dog, Duke, boy can he fetch &...

This is cousin Chris, sitting in her new sidecar...

Fred had it shipped in from Germany, it is way cool! They...

Nope, this is not the family home, but I think it's lovely!

The theater they all went to as children is still there, amazing!

The casino is by far the largest, fanciest building in the area!

There's a bit of color popping at the cemetery...

The scenery most of today...

We stopped by Fred's nephews to check out the draft horses...

Nice horses, he uses them to pull a trailer and a sleigh...

There were a large variety of fowl on the property as well...

And finally, a couple of photos 'of photos' of Fred's hunting &...

Hey brother, nice fish!!

Chrissy has the clock that hung in my grandparents home for all...


Woke to blue skies this morning, well, for about 10 minutes! Then the gray moved in, the temperature dropped and it stayed that way for most of the day. We had a light shower or two as well, but by the time we picked Fred & Chrissy up for today's outing it was just overcast. Did you know that Iowa is all farmland? LOL, just kidding, crops only cover 60% of the state, but it is known as the "Food Capital of the World".

In this particular area the towns are very small, all connected by a 2 lane road meandering past pretty lakes and fields of corn & soybeans. Spencer & Emmetsburg are the two 'largest' cities, with Ruthven in the middle. If you want a 'real' grocery run you travel out of Ruthven. And Spencer, population about 11,000, has recently opened a Wal-Mart.

Today I wanted to visit Emmetsburg as that's where my family is from on Dad's side. We located the hospital where sister Elaine was born, & found the old family home (we think). My aunt was raised there also, so we stopped by her home & found another uncle's place as well. We checked out the grade school & the high school. And the old movie theater that still operates, same building, same location. Neat that something is still operational 60+ years later!

On the outskirts of town stands a large, nice casino the Wild Rose. We stopped there to have a bite of lunch but the restaurant was closed until 5pm. So we headed back into town and found a small but nice cafe. I inquired about the soup of the day & the answer was "oh, we'll have soup next month"! Larry & I both thought we misunderstood, so we said "excuse me??" The waitress reiterated "we'll have soup next month". We thought that was too funny! We both ordered a burger & I have to admit we both thought it was the best meat we've had in ages! Guess it's that Iowa beef. I paid for it later but it was worth it.

Several of you have inquired about my health so here's the short answer. I am doing considerably better, thanks for asking. My GERD was so painful for so many days I truly thought I was having heart issues. Anyway, my 2 prescription meds were NOT doing much good, so after a couple of days I did a bunch of research & have taken matters into my own hands. Did you know that doctor's have a nickname for Nexium? They call it 'purple crack'. And for me, I wasn't happy with all of the side effects of any of the other Antacids, proton-pump inhibitors, and H2 blockers. So after numerous hours of research I am taking digestive enzymes, acidophilus & a couple of other things. And watching the list of foods/drinks that aggravate the condition. As well as eating 5-6 times a day, small amounts. And after only 3 days I am MUCH better!

I'm trying to find exercises to help with the LES (sphincter) if anyone out there knows of any. The sphincter remains closed most of the time, only opening to allow swallowed food and liquid to be swept through into the stomach. With GERD, food, pressure and acid in the stomach overcomes the pressure of the valve and what you have swallowed bursts up the esophagus past this valve. Resulting in great pain. So exercises to help strengthen it would be helpful. Otherwise surgery might come into play. Gee, aren't you glad that was the short answer??? I'll get off my soap box now, LOL.

Tomorrow we are going up to the Lake Okoboji area to visit the Abbie Garner cabin, site of the Spirit Lake Massacre. See you there...

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