What do you do when you and your spouse live in two different cities and one of you happens to have a four day weekend? You plan a road trip of course!
Mike’s mommy was on fall break this past Monday and Tuesday. So she packed up the mom-mobile and loaded up Mike and the dogs and headed to Cincinnati for a four day weekend!
It was a great time! Saturday morning was spent relaxing and enjoying each others company. Something we don’t get to do as often nowadays – and we certainly cherish every second that we get! Mike was so cute! With all of his toys spread all over the living room, the thing he kept crawling back to was his books…
“I always enjoy a good book…”
“Polar Bear, Polar Bear. What Do You Hear? is one of my favorites!”
“I can even read one book while I use the other as a pillow! Who needs all of these other toys…”
Saturday afternoon we went wine tasting. Who knew that Ohio was the leading producer of wine in the United States until the 1890’s? Prohibition all but killed the industry – but it is now beginning to make a comeback! So we tried several varieties – and ended up buying several bottles! They even let Mike join in the tasting. He got to try the “100% Concord Grape Juice”. And while it might not have ranked #1 on his list of drinks – he did indeed drink it!
Sunday was museum day! We started with the Museum of Natural History and Science. We weren’t exactly sure how Mike would do. But all of our worries were over when we entered the museum and the first thing Mike saw was an extremely large stuffed polar bear! Mike’s eyes got as big as pies! He pointed at the polar bear, looked at us and said (in his best baby voice) “oooooohhhhh”! Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get a picture (the polar bear was simply too big!) – but we did take several others!
“Wow! Look at that!”
“Are you sure that thing isn’t going to get me?”
“Look at the teeth on this wolf!”
After the Museum of Natural History and Science, we moved over to the Cincinnati history museum. It was very interesting to say the least! Perhaps the most interesting thing was how in the mid to late 1800’s, the Irish were thought of as “immigrants who are coming to our country – legally and illegally – to take our jobs and escape their debt. They have no interest in learning our culture and stay together in ‘herds’ rather than trying to integrate into the community. They have absolutely no allegiance to this country”. It’s almost funny now – we once hated the Irish with a passion and now they are one of our most endeared heritages. Substitute “Mexican” for “Irish” and “2010” for “1850” and you have a similar story. It also was the beginning of the resentment towards Catholics (since the Irish were Catholic after all). People were convinced that the Pope was trying to end U.S. political independence. People even tried to pass laws to prevent the Irish from becoming citizens (so they couldn’t hold political posts and the Catholic Church couldn’t take over). Very interesting stuff…
Sunday evening, we went to church. We decided to go to St. Lawrence since it was close to the museum and and a 7pm mass. What an interesting coincidence to discover that the St. Lawrence Parish was founded in 1868 (see how that figures in to the dates above!). The cornerstone of the church was laid in 1886! The entire building – inside and out – was absolutely beautiful!!! It’s not the oldest church in Cincinnati (that would be “Old St. Mary’s Catholic Church” – and yes, old is indeed part of the name), but it’s traditional gothic design could keep you wandering around the church for hours…
An photo of St. Lawrence Catholic Church circa 1896. It still looks the same today!
Monday was “back to work” day for “the dad”. It was almost like being a a normal family again! Leave for work, then come back home to find the family waiting for you! It sure does warm your heart and soul…
And that was the end of the break. Tuesday, “the mom” loaded up the car. Before she could head back to Knoxville, she had to have a tire replaced – there was a screw through the sidewall that couldn’t be patched. But the day ended up being a good! “The mom” took a quick detour to see Aunt Diane, Uncle Jessie, and all the cousins! Mike had a great time playing with Amber, Jessica, and Anthony! And then it was on to Knoxville and back to the normal routine!