Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Whaddya Do?

Last week, Mr. Curly and I celebrated our 10th Wedding Anniversary on July 4th.
To celebrate, Mr. Curly planned a trip.  I knew about the trip, but had no idea where we'd be going, or what we'd be doing, so I couldn't really say anything about it except that my dad was going to stay with the Curly Kids while we were gone!

But we're back!  And now I can answer ALL the questions (and then some) that we had beforehand!

The short answer is this:
Tuesday we spent the night in Omaha, walked the river park, ate at Old Chicago in the Old Market downtown area, walked through their open air mall, tried on expensive leather hats and fur coats.

Fountains at the River Park
Wednesday we drove down to Brownville, NE where we spent the night at Pierce Cottage (the same place we stayed 8 years ago for our 2nd anniversary when we did a motorcycle trip through Nebraska). 
Here's what you need to know about Brownville.  It is super cute.  It is only 148 people.  It is a tourist trap.  Nothing is open Mon-Thurs.  We lucked out that things would be open on Thursday because they had July 4th events starting at 7am and not ending until 9:30 that night! 
Our view from the cab of Mr. Curly's 1950 Ford F-1 as we drove through the one-way roads of Indian Cave State Park
Part of the cave
Anyway, since it was Wednesday and everything was closed, we went out to Indian State park where we battled an army of ticks and an ant named Bobby (planning a children's book out of that tale!!)

Thursday we were part of the Brownville July 4th parade, then went down to St. Joe, MO, toured the Patee House and Jesse James house where he was shot.

And I had this thought there - we are weird.  Did you know that?  People are totally weird.  We paid $4/person (really not bad) to go into a 4 room house (that would fit inside most living rooms these days) to see a bullet hole in the wall and hear about the death of a famous bank robbing outlaw.  How WEIRD is that?!  Why would we pay to stand in the room where someone died?!?!
The answer?  I have no idea.  But it was actually really cool.  (insert self conscious smile here)

1886 firetruck
Joaquin Murietta - the Original Zorro!

After we left St. Joe, we headed back up to Brownville, where we perused the local shops, ate some ice cream.....

 and then the BIG surprise of the trip - a river boat dinner cruise and a night at the River Resort Inn!!
River Boat Resort Inn
The Missouri River may be muddy, and we were the only ones dressed up, but it was an absolutely  lovely river ride.
Once we got back to the shore, we listened to some live music, took a walk, enjoyed the BEAUTIFUL weather!
View from the Dinner Boat

At 9:00, we were snacky, but we're still in Brownville, that has nothing open. They even unplugged the pop machines! (We're guessing, none of the ones we found in town were on) So we hopped in the truck to go over to Rock Port MO (just 7 miles away).  Brownville is RIGHT on the river, so we were driving across the bridge when the River Boat firework show began!!
We flipped around, ZOOMED back to the riverboat, ran down the gangplank, around the decks back to our room door, where we set down and watched a nice little firework show (and cringed away from the TWELVE HUGE spiders building webs above our heads).
View of fireworks from our spot on the lower deck.  Nice, but started a bit too early.
Then we got in the truck, now that it was truly dark, and headed to Rock Port!  We got to watch fireworks as we drove, and once we got our pop and snacks, followed the flares to downtown Rock Port where we sat on the back of the truck (still all dressed up!) and watched their show too!
Heading back to Brownville, we got to watch the fireworks people were shooting off at the Brownville bar.

View of the River Boat Resort Inn from the shore at night.

We spent the night on the riverboat, woke up Friday morning just in time for a wonderful breakfast watching the river sparkle in the sunlight and laughing at a gentleman from the kitchen who was VERY particular about where people set.

Friday we headed back to Omaha, where we toured the zoo without our kids and watched the Dinosaur Alive imax movie.  That night we stayed in the Council Bluffs Settle Inn (Mr. Curly booked us the Mountain Retreat room - it was SO nice, a Jacuzzi tub right in the room.... bliss) and ate at the Red Lobster (that had the worst service ever).

Saturday morning we slept in, ate a late breakfast, and came home to extremely joyful kids and a (probably gratefully relieved!) granddad.

We had a marvelous trip.  We enjoyed hot food and quiet times, walks without worry, drives without car seats, late nights and later mornings.
As our first vacation without our kids since they were born, it was quite successful.  I can't wait for the next one!

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