Top Ten…….Monday?

  I am driving home from a loooong road trip to Iowa. At this point we will be arriving home at 2 am. Yikes. But since we have moved to Michigan I just don’t get to see my extended family very often so we have to soak up as much family time in a weekend that we can. And soak up we did.

I know a lot of people come from crazy dysfunctional families, but I can honestly say that although we can be a little crazy at times, it is a family FILLED with love. And lots and lots of laughter. So I leave Iowa with a very full tummy and an overflowing heart (yes cheesy, but true)

So even though it is Monday, I will recap my weekend with a fabulous top ten list.

Top Ten Things I LOVED about my trip to Iowa:

  1. Watching my kids bond with their cousins: Growing up I loved hanging out with my cousins. I have so many fond memories of family holidays spent with my large extended family. But my kids, at present count, have ONE first cousin. So seeing them with all my cousins kids, making fast friends warmed my heart.
  2. Hotel Pool: Normally this would not make any top ten list of things I love because although my kids want to spend all their time in them, I do not find much of anything fun about them. But Hilton Garden Inn, I could kiss you. Some genius added, in addition to the hot tub and regular pool, made another pool that was from 1-3 feet deep. Perfect for kids to swim in while I sat on the side. It totally made up for the fact that breakfast wasn’t included (ahem).
  3. Scenery: Growing up I used to think driving across Iowa was bor.ing. I mean how many corn fields can you be forced to look at? But after being away for almost three years, I rediscovered the absolute beauty of looking out on a sea of green farms.
  4. Iowa Farmer’s Market: Michigan has some killer farmer’s markets. But despite what people in Michigan will tell you, their sweet corn doesn’t hold a candle to Iowa. Proof: my 4 yo ate an entire ear absolutely raw from a stand. And because it was pesticide free, she could do just that without me worrying one little bit.
  5. Hanging with my sister in law: My brother married the most wonderful woman. But between kids and general chaos, rarely do we get to hang out just the two of us. And the last two weekends we have gotten some really good girl time. We really need to ditch our kids and hubbies more often.
  6. Dueling Pianos: Both Friday and Saturday night we went to a dueling piano bar. And despite the overabundance of bachelorette parties (sidebar: seeing some of these brides makes me weep for the state of marriages. And yes, I have officially become my mother), we had so much fun. My dad and cousin also both got called up on stage for some embarrassment which ALWAYS makes for a good time.
  7. Diaper Blowouts: Wait, wrong list. My dad fed Silas way too many grapes and we paid for it. Four outfit changes later, I hope the worst is over. Perhaps he thought I needed blogging material for my Huggies partnership.  (Dear Silas- you can stop now. I don’t need that kind of “help”)
  8. Sweet Corn: yeah, it bears repeating. Iowa sweet corn baby.
  9. Being with “my people”: So I can be a tiny bit crass at times and sometimes might need to have a bit better filter on what I say. But frankly, I love my sense of humor and I think I can trace it back to my dad’s gene pool. so imagine when 30 of us get together. Laughter is some good medicine!!
  10. Remembering: When I hang out with my mom’s side of the family we inevitably start telling stories about my grandparents. And even though we tell a lot of the same things they just never get old. It is so hard to believe they have been gone for over ten years because the memories are so fresh. Their legacy so clearly lives on.

Thanks Iowa for a great weekend. Hopefully we won’t stay away so long next time. And seriously, I am so ridiculously blessed with this family of mine. Much love to you all!!


  1. I’m from Iowa currently!! Thanks for reminding me of all the great things about our state! Glad you enjoyed your visit… come back again soon!

  2. Jill, I knew you were from MI…but I just realized you are from GR!! I’m a local West Michigander too.

    And I’m coming to the #WMIBlogs event on August 9 in Holland. Hope to see you there!

    Oh, and thanks for the great writing!
    Andrea @ Simple Organized Living recently posted…How to Fold a Fitted SheetMy Profile

  3. Katelyn says:

    We loved seeing you again! You better come back soon! Love you guys!


  4. Sounds like a good trip other than the diaper blowouts.

  5. Sounds like you guys had an awesome time! I’m a little jealous- of everything except the diaper blow outs. But I do TOTALLY understand about wanting to be with “my own type of” people! I lack a certain verbal filter as well, and it’s totally refreshing to let it all hang out.
    Sandy recently posted…Random Friday ListMy Profile

  6. oh amanda says:

    How sweet! I can’t believe I’m gonna say this, “I wanna go to Iowa!”
    oh amanda recently posted…The Reluctant Breastfeeder- Top Ten TuesdayMy Profile

  7. I love being with “my people”. Sometimes that is very much needed! Makes me miss my family right now!
    Amy recently posted…Random WiiMy Profile

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