Wisconsin visit, August 2008 · Aug 23, 07:32 AM

C and I went to Wisconsin last weekend for my & my mother’s annual joint birthday weekend, flouting my OBs’ recommendation not to leave the state after I hit 24 weeks’ pregnant. However, we felt pretty darned safe doing so given that 1) my health is still good, 2) it was only a few weeks after 24 weeks (week 26 1/2, to be exact), and 3) Stevens Point is closer to Chicago than much of Illinois is! It was a great weekend to be there: we missed the Air & Water show, but still got to enjoy the beautiful summer weather.

We opted to miss the Point Brewery “Beer, Brats and Bands” festival, given that my ankle was/is still acting up, but did go to the downtown farmer’s market to get fresh veggies and flowers. The market has grown fantastically in recent years, and you can get everything from honey and maple syrup to goat milk soap to 9 different kinds of garlic to purple carrots and yellow wax beans. Neat.

We also wandered over to the Wisconsin River to see how it looked after the “draw-down”. The water level had been lowered in order for the dam to be repaired, exposing meters and meters of shallow riverbed. Despite warnings about blastomycosis, a nasty respiratory disease that can result from fungus present in the mud, all sorts of people were wandering about. Some were doing serious clean-up, and were dressed appropriately; others, well, let’s just say that they hadn’t paid attention to the sign.

The birthday celebration that night was very mellow—grilled steak, patatas alioli, French beans, and chocolate mini cupcakes. Mom gave me some maternity clothes that she found, plus things that she had gotten for the baby, as well as a hat/sweater/bootie set that she knitted from yarn my Grandma Doxtator gave her 30-odd years ago. Wow. Mom got a small but lovely ceramic bud vase from a gallery in Kinsale. (We also gave Dad a jar of honey from the Beara peninsula so that he wouldn’t feel left out.) Sunday, before we left, Mom harvested the first ripe tomato from their backyard and we also took a couple shots of me and my six-month belly to send to my brother. Another birthday happily and gently celebrated.