We're six weeks from our due date, which made me think it was high time we head out on a Babymoon. For a few weeks we talked about going up to the North Shore, but we only had two nights and between the four hour drive back and forth and the cost to stay up there, we started thinking of other destinations.

I have heard about Lanesboro and Harmony for a long, long time. So I told Rory we would consider this trip a scouting trip more than anything, scouting out where we would like to stay next time, discovering our favorite places to eat, jotting down the things we'd like to do on future visits.  We dropped off the kids with Mimi and Papa on Thursday afternoon and went to see Mission Impossible, eat at Buffalo Wild Wings and then went home to sleep, saving us a night's lodging. On Friday we got up and were out the door by 8:30 heading to Lanesboro, just under two hours away.

A few things to note: the countryside in this part of Minnesota is stunning. Like jaw dropping. It felt like we were driving through some lush and bluffy picture that I've seen on a jigsaw puzzle. Of course it is early August, and probably the most green and stunning time of the year. But I'd love to come back in the fall...and spring...and winter. I didn't get a single picture of the countryside, which is so odd, but I think it's because I was taking it in. Which is good.
When we arrived, we drove to find a place my cousin Sarah had told me about. Her friends were fantastically helpful in letting us know some great destinations (I'll write about their tip for caramel rolls below) including the Lanesboro livestock auction place. (Can't really remember the formal name...) Rory and I arrived and it was incredible. There was so much to take in. The bidding was serious, but the cows lightened the mood. And I sat next to the nicest retired farmer ever. He talked to me the whole time, knows everything about every kind of cow, told me which cows out there had pneumonia, where each breed originated from and how cows have been bred to be so big and huge but he, "likes the cows that are the way God intended." I liked him so much and in the end we swapped contact info and he invited us to his farm to see his calves in the spring.

The town of Lanesboro is adorable. It boasts that it is "the bed and breakfast capital of the world" and was clearly designed to be a little get-away destination. There are great bike paths, tubing companies that will shuttle you down the river, fun shops, good restaurants, a reputable live theater and even a Hawaiian shaved ice stand. It feels very vacation-y.

This is the bed and breakfast I would try to stay at next time:
The Bed and Breakfast we stayed at was fine, nice and clean. But on the whole I have issues with Bed and Breakfasts. They're really hit or miss. And I sort of don't love the colors mauve and forest green and I don't love doilies, and that seems to be problematic. B and B's also can have some awkward breakfasts in the morning, sitting with strangers, trying to make early morning small talk. And I sort of always wonder whose room I'm actually sleeping in...was it their daughter's room who is now at college? Or their grandma's before she passed away? All this to say, I put off making a reservation at any B&B because I was waiting to stumble upon an AmericInn or something. But we didn't so when we arrived we quickly grabbed the last room in town at a nice B&B that had a nice room, right next to the owners room. It was clean, and comfortable and had cable tv, so we were pretty set. And then we closed the door and discovered this clock:
Iowa Hospice. Love in Action. We laughed so hard. And then wondered who it was who had died in the bed we were about to sleep in, hoping she was a lovely grandma, filled with peace and sweet things. 
The town is charming and we did a lot of reading, napping, eating and exploring. It's so exciting to discover a new part of your state that is so awesome. We will be back. And when we go we will again frequent the Lanesboro Pastry Shoppe...a shop that has not been remodeled since the day it opened, apparently, and has also never strayed from its original caramel roll recipe. Which is a good thing. I had one each morning followed by massive sugar crashes. But man, those caramel rolls were so good!

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