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Tofte MN Weekend Retreat - Life with the Smushies

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Location: Tofte, MNPhotography

Jan 11 2015
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Prior to this year we had had been to Chateux Leveux 3 times in the past 3 years, a tradition we started before we were married. It was just the two of us and we went every year on Thanksgiving weekend. Well this year we didn't go so we decided to do it in January as our Christmas present. I'm a big sucker for tradition. The past few years we'd brought Candy. Of course Candy is very well behaved and sits quietly in here crate if we leave, is completely house broken and pretty chill. So this year we decided to bring Cookie...our 9 month old Frenchton puppy. Because she's part of the family.
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Of course the first thing Cookie did was jump in the jacuzzi. She's obsessed with water and loves baths. Ok I totally lied. The first thing she did was race around like a maniac and started to poop in the living room ( which I caught and stopped). THEN she jumped in the jacuzzi.
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The condo is a northwoods themed with a bathroom, bedroom, kitchen and living room. We spend most of our trips eating in, taking baths, watching tv, reading and just hanging out. It's pretty cozy and relaxing.
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We always bring up some food and usually go out for a few meals as well. In our past trips we've stayed three nights because they run a buy 2 get one 3 special in the winter months. This time we didn't do it on a holiday so just came for the weekend. Cookie and I had breakfast together on the floor.
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The lovely view just outside our condo (which is in a strip next to several other condos and rooms). We always stay int he same one.
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Our "good" child, haha jk.
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Low shot looking up at Cheateux Leveux in Tofte minnesota minneapolis photography
There are a few steps of very steep steps going down the cliff to Lake Superior. This is one of them. And of course I was not dressed properly at all (I should no better since I'm a northlander). So I was wearing regular boots (not snow) down these steps and the banks down there were covered in snow and slippery. Next time I'll remember my pack boots.
View of Lake Superior on sunny day covered in ice and snow minneapolis photography
This is the view down the bottom of the cliff from our condo.
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Sun shining through trees in beautiful view of Lake Superior, Minnesota in winter minneapolis photography
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I swear Cookie discovered every possible way to make noise imaginable. There was an area rug covering most of the living room but she insisted on chewing her bone against the part that wasn't covered clanking constantly. She also tried barking at Candy to instigate play (we have neighbors and the dogs are supposed to be quiet.) We were concerned we'd get kicked out. So at one point Jordan's solution was to tie her to his leg.
Coho cafe in Tofte MN details minneapolis photography
We had given up hopes of going out to eat early on when Cookie continually whined after being put in the crate. We decided to go get lunch and bring it back at one of our usual stops, Coho Cafe just a few miles down the road. We put the dogs in the crate together hoping Candy would keep Cookie quiet and covered it with blankets. Then we stood outside the room to make sure she was quiet. We were the anxious the whole time waiting to pickup our food. Let's just say one of us picked up dinner at Bluefin Grille. If you ever go there you must try the Bete Noire cake with mascarpone cheese. Also known as, "The black beast," it's to die for.
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Basically Cookie had to go out every 2 seconds and kept giving me looks like this (we have a door out the room, but you're supposed to take them to the designated area).
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And this. Get me outside, NOW.
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Boston Terrier playing with orange toy in Tofte Condo minneapolis photography
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Finally the dogs started playing quietly so Cookie could blow off steam.
View of forest at Chateaux Leveaux Great Lakes Condo minneapolis photography
I decided this weekend to simplify by only bring my camera and one lens. I always get nervous bringing one lens that I'll miss a shot or regret not bringing more because I have all fixed-length lenses. But we've been here many times so I figured it was safe to only bring my 24. Sometimes it's freeing to not have to think about what lens to use. Cheers to another great weekend. It's always a great bonding time for Jordan and I where we get to unwind and really enjoy each other's company.
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