Good day all! Welcome to the 65th week of the Burhos’ Adventures in Bertha! Though we’re still only sort of in Bertha this week, as we’ve been spending time at the Burho family cabin in Minnesota. We still sleep in our Bertha bed and shower in our Bertha shower, but our days are mainly spent in the cabin and outdoors. It’s been one fun, busy week of activities with family!
When we last left you, one final cousin was flying in, rounding off the group for the 2017 reunion year. Cousin Alaina arrived late last Tuesday evening, and the next day was spent in a pretty low-key way, largely because it was raining most of the day – we decided Alaina was the curse, since the weather was so perfect prior to her arrival. There was a lot of sitting on the porch watching the rain, lots of eating and hanging out, and the day ended with a group dinner and rousing game of CodeNames.
Thursday was much the same, with everyone kind of entertaining themselves during the rainy day – some choosing to drive up north, others playing in the garage, and still others working to entertain the almost 2 year old who just wanted to be outside. That evening, Jim Sr’s sister and her husband (Pat and Larry) came by for dinner and another, even more rousing (almost too rousing) game of CodeNames. Though it was a quiet few days, it was nice to relax and to fill the days with quality family time. And all the rain sure made for some beautiful sunsets over the lake.
On Friday, the Jims and Heather attempted to go flying in a small Cessna airplane from the 1960’s. We made it to the airport, did our check over the equipment and loaded up, only to be deterred by the oncoming storm. We sadly drove back home (after a lovely lunch and stop at a farmer’s market) and decided we’d try again the next day. So on Saturday, cousins John, Jerry, and Alaina also came with us to the airport, with the idea that we’d take turns flying with Jim Sr. This time it was a beautiful day and after checking the plane over once again, we were off! Jim Sr has been a pilot his entire life and Jim Jr has always had a passion to fly, learning with his dad and in the Marine Corps. With the two of them in the cockpit, and Heather and Alaina tucked into the small back seat, we had a pretty smooth ascension and climb over the beautiful green Minnesota lands. Such a small plane certainly bumps around a bit; the girls were a bit nervous about motion sickness, but the 40 minute ride was very enjoyable. We even flew past the cabin to wave at Sheila and cousin Jen; Jim Jr took his turn at flying for a while too! After returning from our flight, John and Jerry took their turn, all of us coming back excited after such a cool experience.
We headed back to the cabin for another wonderful family dinner before taking the pontoon boat out for a sunset ride on the lake. Ahh the bliss of being on the lake at sunset…
We made plans to take a family field trip to downtown Duluth on Sunday morning. Most of us drove there, but Jim took the opportunity to get his training in, riding almost 40 miles on his bike to meet us. Duluth is a surprisingly cool town with gorgeous views looking over Lake Superior. We spent some time walking the boardwalk, then having a big lunch at the Canal Park Brewery – a great place for both beer and food!
After lunch, we soaked up some sun walking along the lake and checking out a few of the local shops…and of course we stopped for fro-yo. Jim actually met a guy who was flying his drone over the lake, it was a Mavick Pro, which was the other drone Jim was interested in before he bought the GoPro Karma. The guy had just gotten his and amazingly, let Jim fly it to try it out. Well that was the end of that, Jim Sr needed to get his own, so on the way back to the cabin, Jim Sr stopped at Best Buy to grab his very own. From then on, father/son drone flying has been a top rated activity around the cabin as Jim Sr learns to fly it. That evening, they took it out for its successful maiden voyage as we settled in by a warm campfire to roast marshmallows and make s’mores. Jim Sr also lit a lantern over the lake as Jim Jr followed it away with his drone. Boys and their toys…
After a big breakfast on Monday, a few of us headed out to the woods to do some shooting. Cousin Alaina hadn’t shot a gun before, so she enjoyed shooting the .22, while Jim continues his attempt to get Heather comfortable with the .40 cal. We shot at some cans and some old drone batteries (to see if we could make them blow up), before we had to get back to the cabin and say good bye to much of the group. Cousin Jerry had left the day before after the trip to Duluth, cousins John and Jen had left after breakfast, and brother Rylan and his family were leaving that afternoon, leaving just us and cousin Alaina remaining.
After bidding the Knights farewell, Alaina, the Jims, and Heather got out on the pontoon for some wakeboarding. It took Heather a few tries to get up, then Jim Jr showed off his incredible wakeboarding skills (there’s not much he can’t do), before Jim Sr got out there for some mean kneeboarding. Such a warm, fun summer afternoon!
That evening, the boys and girls began to separate, the boys playing with their drones and the girls chatting over sorbet and champagne treats!
We decided to continue the male/female segregation the next day as Heather, Alaina, and Sheila headed back to Duluth in the morning. They spent the day eating at the local foodie hotspot (The Duluth Grill), exploring the rose garden/park, wandering through little boutiques, walking the shoreline, and stopping for freshly made ice cream. It was a glorious day! After the hip stop in downtown, it was decided that we needed to stop at Sam’s Club to stock up on sweatpants and tshirts…something everyone needs more of apparently! After a nice dinner, the girls commenced haircuts in the kitchen. Alaina is a professional stylist, so she cut and styled Heather and Sheila’s hair, while Sheila carefully gave Alaina a trim. Meanwhile, the Jims spent the day dumping the RV septic tanks and then driving to Wisconsin to get a new battery for Eeyore, the motorcycle, as he’s been long overdue to get that replaced. Now with a new battery and the repairs he had a few months ago, he’s as good as new! After dinner, the Jims faced off with a few good old fashioned Chess games and some Scotch while the girls did their thing in the kitchen.
Alaina left for home this morning, leaving just the Burhos uno and dos at the cabin. We have a few things to do in Bertha over the next few days before we hit the open road once again and head west. We’ll be heading through North Dakota (a new state!) and into Wyoming in the next week, before meeting a group of RV’ers in Idaho for the solar eclipse. Summer is truly flying by, but it couldn’t have been more fun!
Total RV Trip Miles: 18,987