Owatonna, MN. // Some R&R at our home away from home

By Maggie -- Jul 31, 2014

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We've been sort of quiet lately... The past three days we've been at Ryan's family home in Owatonna. I haven't written in awhile, mostly because of brain fog from a bad stomach virus that knocked me out from Sunday to Tuesday. Boy was I in bad shape on Sunday - I could hardly keep anything down, had no energy, and had the most terrible pain in my stomach. I've been going to the Mayo clinic and did a test to see if it's some kind of bug I contracted from bad water along our trip, but I won't know for sure for several days. I've had a chance to relax and am happy to report I feel 90% better. It did take a lot out of both of us, and forced us to hit the pause button on our trip. Luckily this all happened right as we were heading into our home away from home state, Minnesota. The timing was good at least!

Since we arrived, Ryan's stayed busy working on the trailer and taking good care of me. He's adding an outdoor light with the help of his dad and fixing up odds and ends, and I've started helping him clean the whole thing out. Ryan's mom pitched in and painted our propane tanks and did some touch up work in the camper. It's been a family affair! When we leave here tomorrow, we'll feel relaxed and rejuvenated, and Donna will look brand new.   

Yesterday I turned 29, and it was a great birthday. I didn't do much other than work on the trailer and went on a picnic in the park with Ryan and his mom. It was the first time I can remember as an adult not feeling any anxiety about my birthday. Usually I'm frantically trying to figure out what to do and who to do it with, but this year I loved having a low-key day to do whatever I wanted. I got phone calls and packages from home, and I realized it was the first time I've been outside of California for my birthday. I got a pang of homesickness. Ryan's aunt and uncles came over and we sat out back in the perfect 70 degree weather and chatted about our trip. Then to close out the night we turned on a movie and fell asleep on the couch. To most people, that may not sound thrilling, but to us, it was EXACTLY what we needed. 

I have been doing a little bit of writing about the time we spent in Wisconsin, but I'll have to add it in later. It was frustrating to have to leave Lake Michigan on such a crappy note. I was so sick that we decided just to drive straight across the state of Wisconsin two days early so I could be in a comfortable place instead of sick at a campground. We did have some good times on that beautiful peninsula, so it wasn't a total loss. We hope to someday go back! 

This weekend we'll be at our friend Jason's family cabin. Relatives and friends are meeting us there and it should be a grand old midwestern par-tay, out on the lake in the sunshine with good people. After that, we get down to business once again, moving across South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and up to Washington. Two more months to go, plenty more adventures to be had!