We did want to do something interesting though (despite our kids thinking it was going to be "pajama day" each day...). We decided on spending some time in St. Paul.
In looking up some things to do or see, Mike came across a little Ice Cream shop by St. Thomas that he thought we should try on our first day: Izzy's Ice Cream.
I think we arrived around 10:30am - and we weren't even the first ones!
They make their own ice cream and have some interesting flavors. On each cone or sundae you can get an "Izzy Scoop" of any flavor. An Izzy Scoop is basically a tiny scoop. It's really just marketing genius:
I will be honest and say - none of us were too impressed. I didn't think my Mint Chocolate Chip tasted any different than Kemps. Not that Kemps is bad - we eat it all the time - but nothing made us sit up taller and appreciate the ice cream greatness it could have been.
Afterwards we drove to Minnehaha Falls. We've been intending to see this each summer, but it's usually not flowing whenever we think about it. I had seen it in the winter as a kid and I think I prefer it in the winter. We spent 75 cents on parking and headed out on our walk.
We enjoyed the view from above and Jake thought it would be fun to play for the camera. Between the massive puddles we dodged and the still thin coating of ice on the ground, slipping was a distinct possibility.
I still think it's more impressive in the winter - and so so pretty. Plus, you can get a lot closer than in spring and summer when the water is flowing!
Jake came back to get me and we took off down this tiny trail forged by many law-ignoring families. It was extra muddy, and extra slippery. Jake offered to hold my camera and while that was sweet I told him there was absolutely no way that was going to happen. We finally made it behind the frozen falls.
We walked all the way around the back of the falls. The ice was such pretty colors - blues, whites, silvers and pale yellows.
Walking back to the car, Mike said it was the best 75 cents he'd ever spent!
We stopped for lunch at Digidio's Italian Restaurant, which Maddie found for us. It was good - but Jake and I ordered some SPICY food. We don't really do spicy in this family too much but we managed our way through some massively huge sandwiches.
Afterward we had decided to head to the Minnesota History Center. We bought a family pass intending to use it this summer. We walked through the Minnesota Civil War Exhibit which we all found really interesting. Then we saw an exhibit on a house in Minneapolis. It followed the house from who built it in the mid 1800's to all the families that have lived in it since then.
We headed home after that. We were all bushed, but talkative about what we'd seen. Maddie said she had so much fun that she thought we should spend the next day in St. Paul.
So we did....which I'll write about in the next installment.