Sonora tried out for and was accepted for the 8th grade All Suburban Orchestra in St. Louis. This consisted of multiple practice sessions at a local school and many hours of at home practice to master the music. Today was the day they presented their music to the public.
We were lucky enough to have some friends and family show up to hear Sonora play. My parents from KC.
Plus Jeff and Mason.
The music sounded as good to me as a professional orchestra. Its amazing how talented the kids are!
My brother Herman is getting married! He lives in Warsaw, Mo, but is getting married in Sedalia. Family of course came in town to see the big day. In traditional Haake fashion, we did it our way. I started off the party of weirdness when the lady at the hotel desk asked for a description of the car. The photo below is what transpired.
I got a very strange look from the lady when she saw what I wrote. Family was already there and we all started getting ready for the wedding.
It didn’t take long before we were all dressed and waiting for the ceremony to start. Before long, Nikki and Herman were up there taking their vows and enjoying their party!
After the ceremony, we retreated indoors to the barn to celebrate more!
Mom getting a little crazy!
Hanging out with uncle Mike.
Mom, Kalie, and Hannah
Dad, Me, and Corvin
Look, a truck. I would guess a Ford, but I don’t see a tow truck.
Everyone except for Hayden.
Nikki and Herman entering the reception.
Somebody wrote on dad’s window…
I love out of town weddings because everybody stays in the same hotel and its a constant party. Here’s to Herman and Nikki!
We came into KC for the weekend because Holly and family were going to be in town. Somehow it ended up being a mini reunion with family. Its always good to see everybody. First off is a video of Holly (and Jim)’s kids, David and Lindsay.
I got them to say “Kelly Clarkson” and “Welcome to your doom” multiple times in case you could not understand them.
Ok and now for family photos. I’ll name people from left to right.
Mike, Hannah, Kathy
Hiatt and Kris
Lauren, Kathy, Sonora, Danelle, Holly, Becky, Mike
As the night wore on, Henry needed a ride home, so Dad and I went out to pick him up from work. We found this car in his working parking lot. An interesting and harmless prank.
Then we swung by my cousin Matt’s house to pick him up and add to the late night party. A great night!
Not to ruin the drama, but this is the last major day of the trip. I got a hold of a marina that had a pontoon boat we could rent, so we jumped on it. A quick visit to the grocery store across the street to get lunch supplies, then we drove half way back up Seneca lake to the marina. Sonora was beyond excited.
On the north end of the lake there is a canal and we went up it for a bit, lots of cool boats and houses.
A steam powered boat!
Eventually we cam back out into the larger lake to hang out and boat! Deep down inside, we’re all kids, and even mom got in on driving the boat!
Sonora even jumped in the water, but it was super cold and that didn’t last!
We were told not to go farther than half way down the lake by the rental company. We did our best to comply, till we realized that we were farther south than we realized. We rounded a large island that turned out to be Seneca Lake Sonar Test Facility. This is a government facility used to test SONAR equipment. Read about the interesting details in the link if you want to know more. It is strange boating near it and wondering what it is.
It got a bit rough out here for our little pontoon boat and we were wondering if we took on too much! A few times the front of the boat went under a wave and sent water towards us! But we finally made it back to return the rental.
Our vacation was complete as we had seen everything we came to see and delivered the kids back to Maine safely. We started driving home. I realized quickly that Niagara Falls was on our way home, so we made a slight detour.
I’ve been trying to rent a boat to go see Boldt Castle. Danelle, Steve, and I did this back in 2005 and had a great time. I guess its more popular as we couldn’t just get a boat at a moment’s notice. Sonora was very disappointed, but that is how things go. Just the same, we decided to go see the castle. The ladies were not disappointed at the castle and it changed a bunch in the last 13 years! Here are just a few of the photos!
On the ferry back to the mainland, Sonora and I had some fun.
After the castle, we had to decide what to do next. The trip was winding down, but we still had time. We started driving towards home. But first, there were supposed to be decent waterfalls to see in Watkins Glen, NY. I took the scenic drive going down the west side of Seneca Lake. This lake is at least 25 miles long, so we had lots of fantastic views during our drive. It also turns out that Watkins Glen was awesome and HUGE!
It didn’t look like much from the street, but the three of us started hiking down about 90 minutes before sunset. Mom was nervous to go down, but I talked her into going a bit further. She was also worried about getting back up the hill. After scouting ahead, we realized that it was possible to hike all the way down from the top and get to the visitor center across some bridges. I offered to hike down with mom and Sonora, and then run up to get the van and pick them up. This gave the girls an easy downhill trip so we could all see the glens.
Going down, these steps could be a bit slippery at times!
This is one of many waterfalls in the area!
One of several bridges that lets you get from one side to the other of the glen.
Mom checking out the bridge.
I’ll be going back up these shortly. I can still feel the burn!
I wish we had more time to explore here. The day was done. We were ready for a motel and some sleep!