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Hootenanny at Fair Hills by Ann Treacy
August 14, 2008, 6:40 pm
Filed under: Detroit Lakes

Tuesday night is the night of the big show at Fair Hills. The staff put on a really fun show. The kids love it. In fact the dining room and show are open to non-resort guests as well. We did well by scoring front row seats.

Some of the songs everyone knows, some you learn in your first year here, and some are new. My favorite this year was the First Year Spanish Spanish Love Song. Aine loved the song where the boys wore dresses, which was also really good!

I have posted one video here but you can see more (like the boys in dresses) on the Fair Hills blog. (I picked this video because the star (Emma) is the kindest swim instructor in the world. She was booked out but managed to fit in swim lessons for Kate and Lily during her free time. With her help we will be diving by Saturday!)

Tuesday at Fair Hills by Ann Treacy
August 14, 2008, 6:30 pm
Filed under: Detroit Lakes

Before breakfast, lunch, dinner and any activities at Fair Hills there is a bell. By day two we’re all walking around like Pavlov’s dogs. But one fun thing is that kids can sign up to ring the bell. I have 2 videos (below) of Kate and Lily ringing the bell.

Tuesday morning we swam and we swam and we swam. Lily has got down her flip turn, though it could use some finesse. Kate is working on her dive. Mostly it’s a jump right now but by the end of the week, I’m sure she’ll be a diver.

Tuesday afternoon we went on the water slide. I have some video of that too. The resort sets up a huge sheet of plastic on the golf course and aims the hoses on it. It is one of the muddiest things I have ever done. You slide down but generally o 15 feet or more beyond the tarp on the grass – the muddy wet grass. The mud shoots right up your swim suit. I will be plucking grass from my belly button for days! (I thought about making a rhyme there but decided not to do it.)

Monday at Fair Hills by Ann Treacy
August 14, 2008, 3:48 pm
Filed under: Detroit Lakes

It rained. We did get our 3 mile walk in at 7 am – but the sprinkles started just as we pulled into dock. Then it rained until later in the evening when it poured.

But you know what you can do when it rains – go swimming. So we spent some time in the pool before lunch. Monday afternoon we played family games. Larry and the crew set up a bunch of fun events; they got moved indoors but they happened. The highlight was the minnow race – which you can see from the picture with the troughs. The kids put minnows into the troughs to see who wins.

There are a lot of little kids up this week. So there are plenty of playmates for Aine, who has no trouble walking up to meet people. There aren’t as many kids for the big girls but that’s OK. There’s plenty to do regardless.

Monday night was international night – something they only do once a year here. All of the international students working at the resort give a presentation on their home countries and cook traditional food to share. It’s really interesting. There were presentations from Poland, Ecuador, Moldova, Turkey, Italy, and Switzerland. I have a couple a videos from their presentations.

I think I’ve mentioned that we eat like pigs here. We get breakfast, lunch and dinner in the dining room. Each family has one server for the whole week. Our server is Agata, from Poland. She is very thoughtful. Of course we especially enjoyed hearing her presentation – also after living in Dublin with such a huge Polish population it was fun to learn more.

Also in the video are Italian gestures and belly dancing from Zehra, from Turkey. I had a chance to talk to Zehra too as she cleans our cabin. She was also so friendly and nice. I have her email address in case he ever get to Cypress, where she now lives. (Who knows, naybe we will go next time we’re staying in Dublin.)

Fair Hills Day 1 and 2 by Ann Treacy
August 11, 2008, 1:49 am
Filed under: Detroit Lakes

We arrived at Fair Hills Resort last night. (Fair Hills is just like the resort from Dirty Dancing. There’s a dining cabin and tons of events for kids – and adults.) Grandpa drove us up here. We thought that Grandpa would spend the night – but he had to go back for work. So lucky Grandpa made the 4 hours drive up, had dinner, and made the 4 hours drive home. We were really glad that he came with us though. Patrick will be meeting us on Monday. He didn’t realize that we were our vacation plans during the Irish Fair. Although I asked him several times to check his calendar. (Aargh!)

Anyways, we had a relaxing first night. We had dinner and went swimming. We enjoyed the big pool, kiddie pool, and hot tub. You can guess which one I liked best.

Sunday I woke up and did the Fair Hills walk. We walk about 3 miles around the lake and get picked up by the boat in time to get us back to the resort for breakfast. The girls had pancakes shaped as a frog, a pony, and a rhinoceros. After breakfast Kate and Lily played capture the flag with the big kids, while Aine rode a pony and went on the happy bus ride (double golf cart).

We got in a little swimming before lunch. Then Aine went fishing – she got the award for catching the slimiest fish. Kate and Lily went to play water games with the big kids. After the afternoon activities we took it easy until dinner. After dinner we went to the ice cream social and now I’m waiting for Aine to fall asleep. (There are no TVs at Fair Hills – well none in the cabins – which means we go to bed a little earlier.)

Irish Fair by Ann Treacy
August 11, 2008, 1:24 am
Filed under: St Paul

Our time at the Irish Fair was short but sweet. We started with dinner at the Donwtowner Woodfire Grill with mom, dad, Katie, Dan, Patrick and me. The food was good. Everyone seemed to have at least one funny store.

We went with Kate and Dan to see Flogging Molly on Friday night at the Irish Fair. The weather was perfect, the band was fun, and we scored some free beers. I took some video of the band. We were pretty far away – so if you have a slow connection, it’s not worth the wait to see it.

El Vez for Prez by Ann Treacy
August 10, 2008, 10:00 pm
Filed under: Minneapolis

I am very annoyed with myself for not bringing the Flip Video to the El Vez show. He was great as always. He sang my favorite Suspicious Minds/Immigration Time – and he added a Ready-Steady-Go Gen X riff to the song.

The Elvettes were great as always. The crowd was about half the size of the Christmas shows – but that was OK with me. However, had I know the crowd would be smaller I would have definitely brought the Flip Video. Oh well, next time.

The Saints Game by Ann Treacy
August 10, 2008, 9:41 pm
Filed under: St Paul

We held the annual Saints game party a little later than usual due to our Irish trip. Every year we get a bunch of tickets to a Saints game. The Saints are the minor league baseball team in St Paul. The saints are owned by Miek Veeck, a great baseball promoter, Bill Murray, the actor. Billy cooks up brats and burgers and we hang out.

We had about 100 people come to the tailgating before the game and we definitely used the 60 tickets we had for the game. It was great to see everyone. The big news is that the neighbors (Greenhecks and Howards) ended up in the Saints hot tub – lucky bugs.

The Saints didn’t win, but that was OK. At the bottom of the ninth they were behind by 4. The bases were loaded and there was a full county. Sean pointed out that it was just like the Cubs-Orioles game earlier this year. (I had to trust him on that one.) Unfortunately we did not get the grand slam homerun we needed.

The Walker with the Lynches by Ann Treacy
August 10, 2008, 9:37 pm
Filed under: Minneapolis

The Lynches are visiting from Chicago. We were happy that they came on the first Saturday of the month so that we could go to the Walker for the kids’ activities. The theme this Saturday was recycling. The kids made two art projects – one was pasting fish pictures on bottles. The other  project was a nature sculpture, where there started with a stick and glued leafs and things to stick.

We also enjoyed running around the sculpture gardens – and we went into the art gallery to see the talking dolphin and a few other quick looks at art – we saw a Warhol, Chuck Close and Jasper Johns.

Como Zoo with Grandma by Ann Treacy
August 10, 2008, 8:45 pm
Filed under: St Paul

I was going to try to be better about maintaining the blog once we were home, but I haven’t been. I’m going try to catch up today while I’m in the car on the way to Fair Hills Resort.

One day we went to Como Zoo with Grandma. We love Como Zoo; it’s only $2 per adult and $1 per kid to get in. If you haven’t been to Como in a few years – you should go. They have fixed it up a lot. For summer they have a big butterfly house. I tried to take pictures but they are pretty fast. Our favorite butterfly was the Blue Macro – as the name implies, it’s blue.

We also saw a puffin – up close. It reminded us of our trip to the Aran Islands. This one didn’t fly or swim so that was a little disappointing – but it gives us a good excuse to come back.

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