Time spent with Tom's Sister Beth from Milwaukee and more family members...

Walking along the path at Butchart Gardens, we noticed this opening in the trees to this beautiful view.
It was 8:40 pm Tuesday.  We had just returned from Tom's sister Patty's home, a good 40-minute drive back to our hotel.  Today at 7:45 am we're driving in rush hour traffic to pick up Maisie for the day and yesterday I'd yet to spend five minutes preparing today's post as I'd hoped to do to free me up to spend time with her.

Too pooped to complete the post in its entirety last night, I decided to get a head start on it before bed and finish it this morning.  By the time I am ready to head out the door to drive to St. Louis Park, this post was done and posted early today.
Apparently, as a part of the landscape, this opening provided an interesting view for visitors.
Now, I can spend the day with Maisie giving her my undivided attention.  We have a busy day planned; buffet breakfast here at the hotel (the kids love this),  shopping at the Albertville Outlet Mall, and if time allows, a movie she chooses, of course befitting her mature 10 years of age.

Yesterday, was a flurry of activity. We were up, showered and dressed by 7:00 am making our way downstairs for an early breakfast.  By 8:30 we were seated in the hotel's lounge while fast and furiously I banged away at the keyboard to ensure we'd be out the door no later than 11:40 am in order to pick up Betty (Sister Beth) at the airport for her 12:05 pm arriving flight.

A pond on the grounds.
Unfortunately, Tom didn't have his phone on him (it was in the backseat of the SUV in the computer bag) and didn't hear the ring when Betty called to let him know she'd arrived a little earlier than expected.  We were waiting for her in the wrong spot on the baggage level, finally spotting her awhile later.

Once the three of us were on our way, we decided to visit their brother, (my brother-in-law) Jerome who'd been taken to the hospital the previous night with acute back pain.  Worried it was something serious, he was rushed to hospital by an ambulance leaving us all concerned over his condition.

A stone temple statue at the side of a pond in the Japanese Garden.
Jerome is 88 years old, totally blind and extremely hard of hearing but in generally good health.  Lately, he hadn't been feeling well and perhaps, this bout in the hospital might be just what he needed to determine what's causing him pain. 

To date, a specific cause of Jerry's pain is unknown other than the usual often painful conditions commensurate with aging.  He's being treated with meds in hopes of making him more comfortable.  After a short stint at a local nursing home where he'll have physical therapy,  he'll be able to return to his home.
We were surprised there weren't a lot of birds in the ponds and man-made lakes.
We were sad to see him suffering but felt relieved there was no seeming underlying cause of major concern.  We'll continue to visit him over our remaining month in Minnesota.

By 3:00 pm, we arrived at Patty's home, dropped Betty off and we made our way to a local grocery store to purchase food for dinner at Patty's.  We purchased three roasted chickens, scalloped potatoes, sweet corn, veggie platter and fixings for coleslaw which I made once we returned.  We were all hungry and by 4:15, the five of us including Tom's nephew Jim were gathered around Patty's kitchen table.

Early Spring is a perfect time to visit Butchart Gardens with flowers in full bloom.
A short time later, more family arrived and joined us in the meal and idle chatter. including Tom's niece Kari, (a big fan of our site and travels, bless her heart), sister Mary Ellen and husband Eugene and sister Colleen and husband Gene. 

Thank goodness we'd purchased enough to feed others.  Everyone dug in and pulled up more chairs around the table.  It was a typical Lyman gathering; food, drinks and lively conversation.  It couldn't have been more fun!

This gorgeous flower quickly caught our attention.
I'd hoped to work on today's post while at Patty's but she doesn't have Internet access in her home.  She wasn't ever interested in learning to use a computer or smart phone, not unusual for those in their 80's or older.

By 8:00 pm, while a few of the others began to say their goodbyes, I gave Tom "the look" that perhaps it was our time to head back to the hotel and get today's post going.  He fully understood and we headed back to the hotel arriving at 8:40 pm. 
Statue of wild pig that many visitors consider good luck when rubbing it's nose. 
By 9:30 pm, I couldn't type one more word and closed the laptop for the night with a plan to finish first thing in the morning.  Awakening at 5:00 am, I finally dragged myself out of bed by 6:00 am knowing I had better "get the show on the road."
No doubt, today will be another fine day with lovely granddaughter Maisie.

We'll be back at you tomorrow with more.  Have a lovely day!

Photo from one year ago today, June 7, 2016:
In Bali, we spotted this friendly neighbor (no English) making bowls as shown in her hands that are used for offerings at the Hindu temples.  For more photos, please click here.


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