Our travels this summer might not yet be back to what they were in pre-COVID times, but we did actually go somewhere this year! Since we weren’t quite as busy as we have been on previous vacations, I’m just going to take a look at the whole trip instead of going day-by-day.
On Monday, we left for a short trip to Bowling Green, KY. Any visit to Bowling Green includes a meal from Zaxby’s. Fortunately, we have always done carryout, so that wasn’t even any different from our usual dinner.
On Tuesday morning, we drove into Nashville to visit Cheekwood Estate and Gardens and see the Nature Pop! Lego exhibition by Sean Kenney. Both the sculptures and the estate were breathtaking!
We also drove down to the Cumberland riverfront to get a look at the Nashville skyline.
We were going to get lunch at Hattie B’s, one of the locations in Nashville known for hot chicken, but the line was unbelievably long, so we went to Chaney’s Dairy Barn and had ice cream for lunch instead!
Our day ended with a beautiful double rainbow!
On Wednesday, Bunny and I went with her grandparents to tour Western Kentucky University, where she is planning on attending after she finishes at community college:
And on Thursday, we visited the Aviation Heritage Park in Bowling Green, where we saw not only an authorized replica of Marine One, but also an aircraft flown by every astronaut who walked on the moon!
We also had an early birthday celebration for Bunny that night:
We were up early on Friday morning to head home, but we did stop for donuts at the Donut Bank on the way:
It was a little challenging coming up with fun things to do outside in the summer heat, (I wanted to go to a Bowling Green Hot Rods game, but between the temperatures and the fact that I’m still a little hesitant to be in a big crowd, even outdoors, made me table that for the time being), but we found something to do every day, and it was so nice to get away for a bit!
Today is Bunny’s golden birthday!!! We started the day with presents:
I think she likes her new outfit!
We spent the day watching some of her favorite movies. We just got back from a short trip, so she was happy to stay at home and just relax. She picked her favorite dinner of Stromboli and Sunchips, just like she did last year:
She asked me to make a cake that looks like Wrecker’s stuffed friend, Lula, in The Bad Batch. I think it turned out ok, although it should be more red than pink.
I don’t always have photos taken of me with my students on the first or last day of school in any given year, but as it turns out, I did have a photo of Turkey, Bunny, and I from our very first day of homeschooling way back in September 2008, and I made sure to take another today to commemorate Turkey’s and Bunny’s high school graduation.
I guess the experiment we decided to try for one year turned out ok!
I know a lot of people are comfortable going into a salon, masked or not, and getting their hair done. But we’ve decided to stay out of places like that for time being, which meant I had to find a way to deal with my hair myself…or with a little help.
Just before things started shutting down last March, I got a major haircut, including bangs for the first time in years. Last summer, I realized I was going to have to do something about them unless I wanted to embrace the sheepdog look, so I finally, timidly, trimmed a very small amount off the ends. That went well, so I’ve successfully been trimming them more boldly ever since. I’ve also dyed my hair a few times, not because I “need” to, or because I was trying to replace a salon service, because I never did that anyway, but just for fun. But the main length of my hair was an issue that I hadn’t dealt with, and it was becoming a problem.
Enter Bunny. For months, she’s been offering to cut my hair. Rather eagerly, I might add. So last week, I decided to take her up on it. I figured it would be another fun memory we could share of this very strange time. I cut the part directly around my face, so she would know what length I wanted, and then she got to work. She did a very nice job, and it’s certainly better than a lot of unfortunate haircuts I’ve received in the past. As always, it’s quite a relief to have the split ends and annoying bulk of my hair gone, and now I know that I have a stylist in the house who can lend me a hand!
I was kind of worried about pumpkin picking this year. Actually, I had pretty much given up on the idea of us going, and I was planning on just buying a pumpkin when I went grocery shopping, because there was no way we were comfortable with piling into a tractor-pulled wagon with a bunch of people who would hopefully be wearing masks. But then I found out that most sincere pumpkin patch in the area, Braeutigum Orchards, was not only requiring masks and social distancing, they were also offering the option to walk to the pumpkin patch, and that was something we were all comfortable with! Yesterday was the perfect fall day, so we took a break from school to find the Great Pumpkin.
Actually, in some ways, in addition to being a slightly new and different experience, it was a superior experience. We got to see some parts of the farm up close for the first time ever, and it was beautiful:
There were still quite a few pumpkins left, even though it’s pretty late in the season. One thing I love about Braeutigum’s is the wide variety of pumpkin shapes and colors they offer. Being able to borrow one of their hand wagons was a fun new experience, and made our job much easier, too, which is how we ended up with four different pumpkins in three colors!
We stopped to visit the animals while we were there…we always see the chickens and turkeys, but we don’t usually get to see barn cats…we came across at least six of them!
Taking pictures was a little different this year, what with the masks and all, but it’s a memory.
Did I mention it was a beautiful day?
Of course we picked up apple cider and apple cider donuts to enjoy at home:
This was a really positive experience in a surreal time, and made yesterday feel almost like a normal day!