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Sat. July 12 to Fri. July 18- South Bend IN

Saturday– Hopefully, this is our last full week here. While we like South Bend, we have ‘hitch itch’ and are ready to get going!

We were out the door a little later this week and the Farmers Market was a little bit busier. We purchased bacon, short ribs, corn, scallions, lettuce, cantaloupe and an overpriced large heirloom tomato.

We returned home and worked on some more genealogy.  The weather has changed again and we are expecting showers today. The Family History Center is open on Sat. from 11-3, so I went over to continue international research. Bob has been doing very well on the Ancestry. com website at home, so he stayed home and worked. He has traced some family trees way back and found an ancestor who died in the Crusades!

I returned home and put in some of the info I had found. I was able to use a computer today that I could email info from Ancestry.com to myself, then copy and put the documentation into my Legacy program.  Bob continued on his ancient quest.

We ate dinner ( the short rib and corn, with salad). We can’t grill, so we have discovered that we can just put the rib into the crock pot with BBQ sauce, on high, for about an hour and a half. Really good! We watched some shows on the DVR.

Sunday-  A quiet day for us. We stayed in to do laundry and our budgeting. We worked on finding RV parks for the Michigan part of the trip. We want to stay in some of the fairgrounds, but we are going to be chasing the summer 4H  fairs. We might have to make changes. We also thought we would look at going to Montreal on our way to Vermont. It is actually a little shorter, but finding reasonable RV parks is a problem. the ones in Canada are a little more expensive. Although, I would be able to visit the places of my French Canadian ancestors.

After lunch we returned the ‘Orange is the  New Black’ DVD and picked up Season 1, disc’s 2 & 3.  We ate dinner and watched the 2nd DVD.

Monday-  I was off to PT this morning. The PT, Chris, said he could feel where my muscle is tying up in a knots. Lovely!

I returned to the apartment and we went grocery shopping. Bob picked up a prescription at Walmart and we returned to the apartment. We ate lunch, then took a nap.

Bob woke up in time to take the dogs for a nice walk before the rain started. The ‘polar vortex’ is coming and we are having showers and thunderstorms prior to the cold air arriving. We were lucky to miss the ‘polar vortex’ while in AZ this past winter.

We read friend’s, Jackie and Bob’s round the world trip summary (76 pages), enjoying their awesome trip. What an adventure!

We ate dinner and finished disc 3 of ‘Orange is the new Black’.

Tuesday- It was 57 degrees when we woke up. Not really all that cold. The weather report had been for it to be 56, with a high of 60. It is partly sunny. The weather stayed cool and windy all day.

Bob took the DVD back and picked up the final DVD of Season 1, of ‘Orange is the New Black’. I waited for Stephanie,  the cleaning lady, to arrive. She did not get here before lunch.

After lunch, I took off for the Family History Center while Bob worked from home and waited for Stephanie. She arrived at 12:45. She was suppose to be here between 10 and 10:30. Oh well.

I found a lot of info on family into France. Bob was still way back into 960 AD. He found that he is related to William the Conqueror. Cool! He is able to go back so far as he is related to royalty and Dukes. Makes it easier as they kept family records.

We ate dinner and watched the last ‘Orange is the New Black’ DVD. We liked the show! It took awhile to get into it, but once we did we were hooked. It has been nominated for the comedy show Emmy. I would not call it a comedy. It is too ‘dark’ for that, but there are funny moments. It ended on a cliff hanger!

Wednesday-  I was out the door for a 10 AM mani/pedi. Bob cooked the dog food. After lunch, Bob dropped me off for Mahjongg and drove on to Bremen to check on the MH. He took these pictures.  The MH was in for the clear coat, so the pictures are not very clear. Bob had to take them through the window that was covered with clear coat. DSCN3192





The MH will move to the small paint shop for them to complete the slides. Then more clear coat. They will put in the lights and other items on Friday. It should be returned to PJ on Monday. PJ needs two days to complete the MH and we should be on schedule to pick it up on Thursday.

We went to Hacienda restaurant for Parrot Head Night. Bob had the Fish Tacos and I had the Chili Relleno. We arrived at about 6 PM and the Jimmy Buffet music did not start until 7. We finished dinner at 6:50, but the place was mobbed, so we left instead of taking up a table. People were standing in line to get in, with almost an hour wait. We returned home and watched TV.

Thursday- Blake has sold the dressers to his bedroom set so the folks were coming to pick them up. We cleaned the dressers out, as we had been using the one in the living room for storage and the TV is on top. We moved the TV, our WII, cable modem, cable box, and the DVD player all to the coffee table. I actually like the look better.

We stored all the items from the dresser in bags. Paper bags for Blake’s stuff and cloth bags for ours. I also packed up some of Blake and Cory’s stuff from the rest of the apartment. The buyers were supposed to be here early, but did not arrive until almost 1 PM. They texted that they were going to be later, so we ran over to Breadsmith for some nice French Peasant bread, to Martins for milk, and Jimmy John’s for subs for lunch.

The buyers were using her fathers SUV and hauling a U-haul trailer. They had trouble getting their child seat, for their two year old, hooked up into the SUV.  Bob went to the office and found the cart to use. We had them come up to the 4th floor of the garage. I collected the money for Blake and we helped them to load the two dressers into a U-haul trailer, and off they went.

We returned to the apartment and worked on some more genealogy. Today Bob found Viking royalty in his family tree! I still have problems with following my line, so I have just been cleaning up some items.

The MD office called and cancelled my appt. for the injection tomorrow. It turns out they do not have an Ultrasound machine in the office where they had made the appointment, Nappanee. So now it is scheduled for Tuesday in Elkhart. This messed up my PT schedule, so I am only going to have one appt. post injection. Oh well.

We ate dinner at home and watched some recorded TV shows on the DVR.

Friday-  I had called yesterday to make reservations for today, since all of our plans have changed. We have a 2 PM (3 PM EST), reservation at the Valpo Velvet Ice Cream Factory for a tour. I tried to get a reservation for the tour at the Hoosier Bat Company, but they are not doing tours today.

We left around 9:15, heading west on the Indiana Toll Road. We arrived in Hammond IN, at the Visitor Center around 10:20, EST, 9:20, CST. Outside is this car and bench.

Ourside the Indiana Visitor Center

There was also this statue of the kid with her tongue stuck to the pole.

Double Dog Dare You!

Evidently this was from a scene in the movie, The Christmas Story.  The Visitor Center building is very odd looking and they explain this in the diagram below.

The visitor center

There is a silo to represent the farmers, the beach and the waves are show and so are the factories. Each area of the building is a representation of the area.

At the entrance was this pretty stain glass duck.

Stain glass duck

Our goal was to visit the John Dillinger Museum, which is located in the visitor center. The price was $3 each for seniors, but we did not have the exact change. So we ran out to a gas station where we each bought a Krispy Kreme doughnut and came back with the change.

We toured the museum, which was interesting, but no pictures were allowed. Here is the entrance.

Entrance to the John Dillenger Museum

John Dillinger was an interesting man. He grew up in Chicago as his father owned a grocery store.. When he was 17 his father moved the family to Morristown IN to farm. He left to join the Navy at 18. He did not do well with authority, so he went AWOL and returned home. He was just hanging out one day with an ex-convict, and they decided to rob a grocery store owner. He hit the guy over the head and was caught. He received a sentence of 10 years.

While in prison, he learned how to rob banks from the other inmates. When he was paroled, he had promised to assist his new buddies with escaping. He did and he was on the run. That was the start of his gang. 

He was eventually caught in Tuscon AZ and brought by plane to Chicago, where he escaped. He waseventually killed by the FBI. Some of the stories about him were interesting. He and his gang wanted guns, so he would rob the police stations! He  was polite to the women in the banks, but he did kill a police officer. One time they had taken an older women as a hostage. They had her hanging on the running board of the car. She asked to be dropped off at home, so they took her home!

We left and since by this time it was 12:00, EST, we went next door to the Cracker Barrel for lunch. We finished lunch just as the restaurant was getting busy with the local lunch crowd.

Our next destination was the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. We followed the  toll road back to the exit. We followed the directions, but every place that we tried to turn was closed. So we finally gave up, All of the park seemed to be closed! We think they might have had a lot of damage from the storm two weeks ago.

Since we were east on Hwy. 20, we turned west and went to Valparisio. We drove around the pretty little town and arrived at Valpro Velvet Ice Cream at 1:40( CST) for our 2 PM tour. We each had a scoop of ice cream. Bob had the Aztec Chocolate, which had hot pepper in it. I had the Brownie Walnut Chocolate. They were both just okay..

Valpro Velvet Icecream plant

Valpo Velvet Ice Cream Shop and plant

Valpro Velvet Ice Cream Shop

At 2 PM they led us to the back of the building. Mike Brown, below, gave us head covers to wear.

Mike Brown owner of Valpro Velvet Ice Cream

Mike is third generation. He makes the ice cream and his brother does the marketing His grandfather and father both had degrees from U of Wisconsin in dairy management. His grandfather had worked in Chicago and found the ice cream/ milk plant for sale. He purchased it and it became Brown Dairy. They delivered milk in the 50’s and started an ice cream shop. Mike’s son assists, but he is not sure he is going to go into the family business.

He explained how the ice cream is made. They basically make two ‘bases’, white and dark. 70% of the ice cream uses the white. The rest is chocolate. He makes the base(150 degrees to pasteurize) in this 500 gallon vat behind Bob.

500 gallon ice cream vap behind Bob

It is then pulled to the homogenizer,  to Mike’s left.

Second stop on ice cream process

Then the milk concoction is cooled and mixed  in this machine, to Mike’s right.

Third stop, making it cold!

This is a very small operation, with only three people involved in the process. Mike, his brother, and another worker make all the ice cream. Actually, mainly just Mike. Next he showed us the freezer. It was much larger than it appears in the picture. We walked through, very quickly, as it was really cold!

Upstairs in the freezer

The freezer was actually two story, with a basement full of these ice cream containers. They make 186, 000 gallons a year. Edys probably makes that in a week. They have not expanded very much. They are in some stores in Chicago and South Bend. We left and drove back on the toll road, arriving home at 4:30.

We ate dinner and watched some episodes of “Crossbones” on  InDemand.

One Response

  1. Thank you for remembering my b-day

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