Gordon, Wisconsin Population 176

Forrest Road

 I announced to a group of ladies at a dinner party that I was beyond excited to go to Wisconsin for vacation.

 I would be unplugging, away from news, tv, phone calls, work.

The kids had to play outside and create their own fun.

Declan by window

Make forts, swim, take walks, play in the forest.

I was amazed when one of the women said, “why would you want to do that?”

The thought of being so remote and having an electronic free zone seemed horrific to her.

 I’ll tell you why I was so excited.

Doc Shot

I had no idea what was going on in the world other than my own world.

I enjoyed talking to my family face to face instead of texting.

sunset feet

Each night I got to watch the sun set.

I enjoyed daily four mile walks with my sisters and Mom.

Wild Roses

We discovered wildflowers, followed animal tracks, walked through the woods, heard a symphony of bird songs.

We waved to and were waved back by every person who passed us.

They slowed down to 20 mph to let us pass (try that one in Los Angeles).

We saw a bear.

We made wonderful nightly meals and all sat down as a family to eat.

We drank some awesome wine.

We drank even more awesome beer.

Beer Chair

We saw more eagles than crows.

We saw more deer than people.

My 6-year-old now knows how to kyack.

Caroline Kayak

My daughter learned to fish.

We played for  hours in water  so clear you can see your feet and all the fish swimming around.

Clear Water

We drank tap water from the faucet.

It’s ice-cold, delicious and clean!

I did some canoeing.

Canoe

I listened to big, loud Midwest thunderstorms at night.

Powerful and majestic and perfect for sleeping.

View of Lake

When we woke up we made huge pots of coffee and sat on the screened in porch, surrounded by old pine trees and an amazing view of the lake and slowly embraced the day.

We went to a Lumber Jack show.

 I learned a lot about logging  and I got to see some super cute Lumber Jack’s.

Lumberjack

We ate at a local joint for a Friday Night Fish Fry,we drank beer, ate cheese curds, played Pac-Man (yup, the original version was still in working order).

Long Branch

No flash or frills, no one was dressed up, it was real, delicious and down home fun.

cheese curds

I felt American.

I know it sounds corny, but there were American flags all over the place and it wasn’t because of the 4th Holiday it was because the people of the small town communities we visited love their country.

It’s nice to be around and especially after the controversial verdict that has our nation divided and up in arms.

   I almost cried when I ate an iced chocolate raised donut because it was that good.

We played family charades and ate popcorn.

The sound of the Loons on the lake, eerie and beautiful.

I love the fact each year I can count on nothing changing.

Cabin Wall

The creak when you hit the second stair on the way down, the sauce pan that was struck by lighting, the elephant foot stool, the pheasant taxidermy on the mantle, the fireplace made from stones from the near by St. Croix river, the old faded map of Wisconsin, the porch swing.

They will all still be there, unchanged when we return.

Lighting Sauce Pan

Wisconsin Map

The memories I had as a kid will be the same memories my daughter will have.

Carrie 1972

 Carrie 1972

Caroline On Dock

Caroline 2013

It’s so nice that there is a place that stands still in time.

Gordon Forest

Standing still is not a bad thing.

Darbie & Sunny

I came home with a clear mind and a full heart.

Gordon

I whole heartily recommend going away to a place Like Gordon, Wisconsin.

Population 176.

And now I hope you understand why.

xoxo Carrie

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13 responses

  1. Loved this post, love your family, wish we had a place like this and could get along enough to enjoy it!

  2. My Dear Carrie,

    You captured the Big House and Gordon perfectly!!! I’m so glad you and your precious family could share once again the beauty of a special place. Love to all of you!! Dana

  3. Love it!!! Great words, great pictures. So nice to see your kids doing the same things we used to do 40 years ago. Heading up in 2 weeks, can’t wait! Love to you all.

  4. I was born and raised in Wisconsin. Have lived many places and all have good and not so good attributes. Learned to make friends and home wherever I lay my head!

  5. What a beautifully written piece… Love that you are passing on the Johnson tradition on to Caroline, Declan and Katie. As we have said many times – there is nothing that compares to the midwest!

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