Sock Monkey Madness in Rockford (Roadtrippers)

Shortly before the arrival of COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders, I visited Rockford, IL to attend the annual Sock Monkey Madness Festival at the Midway Village Museum. My story and photos were published on Roadtrippers. Below is an excerpt; click here to see the story.

"As I step into the Midway Village Museum, I am greeted by smiling faces everywhere; children and adults are carrying dolls, and t-shirts, buttons, and books are adorned with images of the classic toy. The event gives fans the option to make or buy a new sock monkey, or repair an existing one."

True North antique shop

My husband Chris and I love hunting down great antique shops. We drove to Morris, IL to visit True North, a shop we'd seen shared on various Facebook pages and websites. With more than 6,000 square feet of booths, we had fun picking through booths filled with Christmas decor, antiques, handmade crafts and more. At True North, there is truly something for everyone.

Johnson's Pumpkins and Corn Maze

It's fall! Chris and I headed to our local pumpkin patch to pick up pumpkins and gourds so that we could decorate our front yard and our Little Free Library. We stopped by the local Johnson's Pumpkins and Corn Maze. We came for the pumpkins, and we stayed for the adorable barn cat. (We're cat people.) It was a great time!

The Day the Music Died (Roadtrippers)

Chris and I had a wonderful visit to Clear Lake, IA, the town famous for "the day the music died." My story was published on the Roadtrippers site! Below is an excerpt from the story. Click here to see the full story and photos.

"As I step onto the hardwood dance floor, I can feel the history swirl around me: the music, the memories, and, of course, the dancing. Booths toward the back, once occupied by women in poodle skirts, have small drawers to stash personal items—or alcohol, when it was prohibited at the Surf."

Farm Aid 2019 (Wisconsin)

Farm Aid 2019 came to the Midwest (Alpine Valley Music Theatre in East Troy, WI, to be exact,) and Chris and I immediately purchased tickets. What a great way to indulge in great music, while supporting our local farmers.

According to Farm Aid's website:
"Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert in 1985 to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on the land. Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001. Farm Aid has raised $57 million to promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture. Farm Aid is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to keep family farmers on the land." The day of the concert, we were in the lawn section and we were rained on for nearly 12 hours straight, but we loved every minute of it. The concessions were food from local farmers, and it was easily the best concert food I've ever had. 
We put on our ponchos and enjoyed epic pe…

Historic Auto Attractions

"The place where history meets entertainment!"

Chris and I visited the Historic Auto Attractions museum in Roscoe, IL, and we were blown away by the size of this museum, as well as its unique array of artifacts. (We easily spent a few hours here.)

Not only does the museum feature a massive collection of Abraham Lincoln items, gangster memorabilia, famous cars, movie set items, and TV relics, but it's also home to the Illinois Stock Car Hall of Fame. There is truly something for everyone in this unique museum. Below are photos from some of our favorite pieces, but this is just a small sampling of everything this museum has to offer. Check it out!