June & July Update – Trip to Ohio and Some Games

Hi again. I missed a month’s update. Oops. Well, here’s my update for the last 2 months then. 🙂

June and July, the summer months that see a lot of street festivals, food festivals, and all sorts of activity in the Bay Area. I’m still recuperating from long-term illness (at least I think I’m healing. Sometimes it’s hard to tell), so didn’t partake in the outdoor adventures of my area. Really, I was looking for something relaxing that I could share with people I love as the ideal summer experience. So, after booking an extended trip home to my family, I also started hunting for local adventures we could have in the area.

Ohio has fun things to do, but when you’ve lived there for years, the tourist attractions lose their appeal (I think I understand the New Yorkers who never visit Ellis Island now). And at least for me, it’s the little hidden gems that become the highlights of a town anyways. The biggest “gem” being right at home… mom’s cooking, warm sunny days on a patio with lush grass beneath and a vegetable garden starting to produce. It’s a picturesque American life in my eyes.
Banana Peppers
A patch of Banana Peppers growing in my mom’s scattered garden.
We went to Amish Country once, being very close to my family’s home and a common stop for the locals b/c of their traditional foods and crafts. Hartville Kitchen is always a good stop for “country cookin'”, though beware the butter and lard used in EVERYTHING. The portions are also quite huge for the prices too. Tasty, but you know… stomach issues.
And then as a new treat for both me and my mom, I booked a spa trip at the Spa Walden in Aurora. It’s… a bucket list item for me (if I could say I have a bucket list) to experience a resort spa. This wasn’t technically a resort per se but it was a full day of pampering at a quality venue and I figured, since I’m not booking any international flights or tours, let’s splurge on this one thing that not only benefits me, but also lets me pamper someone else (my mom deserved some relaxation). Spa Walden is a lovely venue in the middle of nowhere. I try to think of it like the spas in Napa, just with grass or corn fields nearby instead of vineyards. The spa room was decorated with real luxuries including a centered hot tub, a steam room (with the coolest shower ever!), areas to lounge, champaign, tea, snacks, and all the amenities you might possibly need during your stay. Most of it wouldn’t be used b/c of the time available in the room, but hey… it’s there to provide options for relaxation. 🙂
Spa Walden Room Interior
Where we spend our day in luxurious pampering.
In the end? I’m glad I did it! But … I will likely never do that again. Expensive (with some unexpected fees in the final bill that really should have been listed up front (if you say gratuity is included, the price on the site better show the gratuity on it!)) and really, after 1 hour of pampering, I was done and wanting it to be over. Lol. Pampering is nice, but after an hour I wanted to be up and active.
By far my greatest memory, and repeated daily experience of this trip, was the puppy. Parents got a puppy last year that I did get to see during the Christmas Holidays (hyper and fearless ball of fur). Really a dog now, he still has the playfulness of a puppy, but is becoming more aware of his strength (and sharp teeth and nails). He folds his feet in when sitting on your lap (so his nails don’t scratch. Let’s ignore the fact he’s really too big to be a lap dog) and immediately stops playing if he accidentally bites too hard. I will always be amused at how he handles misbehavior. You can see the progress of logic in his actions as he tests his limits…. No I can’t bite? Ok, well how about nibbling? No? Can I lick then? No? Nuzzle? Ok. Nuzzle.
He still tries to sit on people’s heads, though won’t try to climb up you to do it (just be careful if you’re laying on a bed that he’s allowed on). It’s not a dominance thing or anything like that. He just likes to cuddle heads. And be in high places. Otherwise he is very attached to people, eager to please, and incredibly intelligent.
I watched him learn the word “leash” in 2 days after we started using it to reference “walk”. I saw him also learn how to open latch doors on his own and follow people outside. Super intelligent and makes me wish I had one with me always.
Toby the border collie mix
Toby being ridiculously cute
But back home in the month of July, I suppose gaming has made itself the highlight of my month. Steam Sale happened and this is the first time I took advantage and bought a bunch of games. Here goes!

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