Something that Ben and I have enjoyed to do ever since we've been married is to stay at bed & breakfasts when we travel. We found one in Ft. Wayne that had a fantastic hot tub when we got married. We stayed at a really quiet, quaint one down in St. Thomas on our honeymoon. We still talk about the one that we stayed at in Wisconsin when we traveled up to Minnesota a couple of years ago. We had a great time staying in one down in Brown County the spring before Abby was born (biggest breakfast ever!). And just this past week, I found one about an hour from Ft. Wayne in Grand Rapids, OH that was exactly what we needed.
If you ever have the chance and if you're into this sort of thing like we are, I recommend all of these. This week, we stayed at The Mill House, which is a converted mill right on the "rapids" of the Maumee River, which, incidentally, is bigger in OH than it is in IN, so it's really not as inconsequential as it first sounds. It was a memorable trip for a couple of reasons, most importantly, this was Abby's first overnight visit with the grandparents all by herself. In other words, this was the first time that I had not been with Abby overnight. It was a bit of a milestone, and I'm glad that I was able to choose when this took place because it was so much easier for me; I was ready, and I know that Ben was as well, for a break.
But back to The Mill House. It's in this tiny, tiny little city of about 1,000 people, which boasts 2 pizza places, 2 places for ice cream, 1 other restaurant, 1 other B & B, and an assortment of cute little shops and many that are out of business. The recession hasn't been kind to their Main Street, it seems. The Mill House itself is adorable with awesome character and beautiful brick & wood, including floors made from reclaimed bowling lanes. In my opinion, lots of B&Bs tend to be over decorated and dated, appealing exclusively to older generations. But this one is fairly neutral, which I appreciate.
When we got there, and we were the only guests Monday night, the hostess had made a little mistake and hadn't noted our arrival on the correct calendar. But she was utterly gracious and made up for it in spades. We definitely took advantage of her homemade scones (so delish!), biscotti, and gigantic chocolate chip cookies. Plus, she had a Keurig coffee maker, of which I am envious. Despite the cruddy weather, it was SO nice to just sit down, drink some coffee, nibble some scones, watch some tv, play a game, and just chat or be silent for the afternoon. This adventure came on the heels of the most hectic, stressful 2 weeks of my grad school career which resulted in tears a few times.
We had the best, loungiest afternoon/evening, just watching baseball and basketball, reading and eating. And, I received an email while I was there that my research project had been accepted, which means...I'm done with my Masters! The stars aligned, and I'm ready to do this again. Soon.