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School Lunches...Indiana Style

So...after an uneventful (Thank God!) car trip to Carmel, and a good night's sleep...we did what any fun-loving grandparents would do...We went back to school...for more school lunches!

 With BOTH Emma and Delaney.

But no matter how much you love your grandkids...NO grandparents want to eat school lunch TWICE in one day.  So we devised what I thought was a genius plan.  We would BOTH go to school...and Peepaw would eat with Delaney, and Meemaw would eat with Emma.  That  way we ALL got to spend time together and still only eat ONE meal.


First up...Delaney.





In case you're wondering about her attire...It was PAJAMA DAY for her class!  They earned this "reward", and all the kids looked forward to that special event...


Their cafeteria offered MANY healthy lunch options, and we were glad to see our grandkids made some good choices that day.

I also noticed how NICE the "Lunch Ladies" were...and Delaney told me "they aren't just NICE...they are really REALLY NICE".  (I made sure to tell the women, since I'm guessing they appreciate those compliments whenever they can get them.)





We even got a chance to follow Delaney to her classroom and meet her wonderful teacher, Mrs. Selm.


And after a hug for Delaney, it was back to the lunchroom to wait for sister Emma and her class to arrive for lunch.



We felt like "pros" as we made our way through the lunch line this time...
And we even took a "selfie" to commemorate the event!


The classes were VERY well-behaved, and the hallways remained quiet...no matter how many kids were passing through on their way to and from lunch.



And every hallway in the school was lined with cans and boxes of food...collected for the Food Banks for the Holiday season...a great idea!


It was a yummy lunch, shared with two little girls who were happy to see us.  A FUN day in Carmel, Indiana!

ROAD TRIP-Part #1...A Busy Corner Lunch

OK...Just TRY to pack lightly for a nearly five month trip...I DARE you!  But keep in mind, LOTS of this "mess" will be left in Indiana, before we head South to our Florida home.  (Really.  It will!!)

No room for a "Backseat Driver" on THIS trip!
So...after leaving our "Iowa Life" behind...we were grateful for the chance to SIT DOWN in the car for a few hours after a week of packing, cleaning, sorting, etc.  Sitting down never felt so good.

But when it was time to stop for lunch in Illinois, our stop at The Busy Corner Restaurant in Goodfield was a good choice on our drive to Indy...and more family fun.


We both selected the Soup and Sandwich special for $5.95.  (A good choice.)  

The Cream of Potato with Bacon Soup really hit the spot on a cold Midwestern day.  My Chicken Salad Sandwich was good, and Hubby's Turkey Club was also a yummy choice.  And a real surprise...The soup was HOT!  (A rare occurrence in many restaurants.)


And even though we didn't "cave" when it came to dessert...it's worth noting the Busy Corner is FAMOUS for their pies...and LOTS OF THEM!

Then it was back in the car to finish this first leg of our Winter adventure...on to Indy for Christmas...and precious time spent with Nick's family.

But after Christmas we'll face MORE family good-byes...

We HAVE learned a valuable lesson, though, whether in cooking or in life...we've learned to take the bitter with the sweet.   (And our time in Indy is predicted to be on the SWEET side.)  
You'll see...

So Indiana grandkids...Here we come!

HURRICANE GRILL & WINGS, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

After Grandson Luke's first Christmas Concert, we took our Cedar Rapids family out for dinner.  And we picked a brand new spot to try.  In fact...it was the ONE WEEK Anniversary of the restaurant's opening!

Even though it was a cold and rainy night in Iowa, we felt like we had walked into one of our favorite beach bar spots in Fort Lauderdale...
Hurricane Grill and Wings...
Check it out!



I was absolutely shocked by the HIGH QUALITY of service we received, since the place was only seven days old!  Our server, Devery, is a real asset to the restaurant, especially when she answered questions we didn't even know enough to ask!  And she was so patient with our four little grandkids...she made sure they had a wonderful meal...and a good time.  (What a gem!)


The THIRTY SAUCES to choose for our wings were a tasty adventure in itself!!


The food was delicious...and served quickly.  And everyone got exactly what they had ordered. (Amazing...especially in a brand new restaurant.)


Little choir boy Luke LOVED his Mac & Cheese...and his Salad...


All in all...it was a wonderful taste of the Caribbean on a cold and blustery night in Iowa.  And THAT'S a bargain, for sure!

The Hardest Part...

The HARDEST part about living two lives (Midwest Life-Florida Life) is leaving behind our family and friends...to be with our OTHER friends...in Florida.

And this post should show you what I mean...
Making the most of our last days in Iowa...
First...Lunch at school with our little First Grade Sophie...



And Indoor Recess...Because it was Raining...




Then back to Aaron's house...and cookies with Luke and his Mom...


And admiring their FOUR Gingerbread houses...One built by each grandchild!


Then off to Little Lambs Christmas Program for Luke...He was Awesome!



Then a "Happy Birthday Jesus Cupcake Party" to Celebrate!


Then off to Dinner...







Then back to the house...for CHRISTMAS PRESENTS!







And  PICTURES with Grandma and Grandpa...



SMILE!!!


Then...all too soon...it's time to leave...
And these little people will be SO DIFFERENT when we return...

Life is a series of decisions...and we pray we make the right ones...every time.

RIDE...Iowa City

What should you expect when you visit a new restaurant in Iowa City called RIDE...?

How about WHEELS...


Everywhere!



We were greeted by Roc, the owner, who seated us, and then gave me a tour of the restaurant.  I was impressed with the unique decor and innovative menu.  (I do hope they add a simple Classic Egg Breakfast later...I think they are still tweaking the menu.  And you CAN order a basic breakfast by building your own from the ala carte menu.)


And speaking of the menu...RIDE'S menu also pays tribute to all things moving.  (A clever idea.)
And they have BIG coffee cups...with your choice of Medium or Dark roast coffee...


The unique menu offers a variety of items to suit every customer.  (Even those of us who arrive the conventional way...by car!)


The walls are filled with awesome photos...and I love the "industrial" vibe with the exposed duct work and weathered wood.



The sixty seat dining room will grow by another 30-40 MORE seats outside on the patio when Spring finally springs...


And the bathrooms have shower curtains...instead of doors..Just like "sister-restaurant" Stella.


And the waitstaff aims to please...even when the food orders mistakenly arrive in bowls instead of plates.  (Remember, this restaurant had only been open several days when we visited.)

Still working out opening week order kinks on plating menu items...

Extra eggs...and LOTS of plates

And four eggs delivered instead of the two that were ordered...but that made them twice as tasty!


And JAM delivered in a jar...With specialty toast...



So when you're in the mood for a MOVING breakfast...be sure to check out...RIDE.

It will be worth the trip...