Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Willow River State Park

Yesterday started out a little rough. Actually, scratch that. It started out delightfully! I got up early with my Addi-girl and sat in the living room with her while she watched a few cartoons on the TV and I sipped my coffee and read my book. I know, I am actually reading a book, right? Seriously, I can count the number of non-children's books that I've read in the last four years on one hand. Not joking. There's probably a dozen that I have started, but maybe only 4 or 5 that I have actually finished. I set a goal to read four books this summer. I have finished two and I am half-way through a third. Not bad. So, anyway, the morning was a gem. It was a cool late summer morning with dew on the grass and a chill in the air seeping in through the open windows. Addi was happy to watch a little TV since the boys were still sleeping. I was more than happy to curl up with a blanket, my coffee, and my book.

I was eager to plan my day... take the kids to visit my Mom for the day? spend the day outside, perhaps collecting some natural fall decor from the woods or the roadside and putting together a little front porch vignette? clean out my garden beds and prep for next spring? spend the day at a park? invite someone over and grill? So many options! 

We knew we wanted to spend some time with Cliff's parents because we didn't really see them all weekend and missed seeing them over Labor Day weekend too!   But, then there is nap to think about for Addi and honestly, Gavin probably needed a nap the most since he seems to be fighting the back-to-school sniffles. 

We kept busy in the morning doing a little tidying up, some laundry, and played outside for awhile. Cliff went up to the farm to talk to his parents about their plans for the day and invite them to do something with us. It was an absolutely GORGEOUS late summer / early fall day! The sun was bright and warm, but with the perfect cool-ish breeze. Before we knew it, it was after lunch and we knew we still needed to settle the kids into naps. Then, I hit a wall. I hit a "this day isn't going quite like I thought that it would" roadblock. You see, I have a tough time adjusting when I have an idea of how a day might go and then it turns out to be a bit disappointing or uneventful. It makes me just want to give up and crawl back into bed. I didn't end up doing any fall decorating, I did more refereeing with the kids than I prefer to do, we hadn't invited anyone over for dinner, or even pulled out anything to grill, I didn't go visit my mom, and I didn't get the garden beds cleaned out. I was a little disappointed. 

So, while the kids napped, I crawled into bed. Silly me didn't nap like I should have because, remember how I said above how I am reading a book? Yeah, well, I'm actually so into my book that I read for almost two hours instead of seizing the opportunity to nap in the sunshine! 

We decided that after nap we would pick up Cliff's parents and head to Willow River State Park for a couple of hours. It's not too far from home and they hadn't been there in many years. The lake is currently drained while the dam is being rebuilt, so it's quite different from the last time any of us were there. We didn't do too much walking, but enjoyed just the perfect blend of playing in the sand, exploring the edge of the river and the trails through the woods, and just appreciating our beautiful world.

I can't be the only one that thinks this picture (above) is absolutely hilarious. This was them posing for a picture! Gavin does this any time he is in a photo with other people his size or smaller. I think Addi saw him doing this and tried to do it herself. It just cracks me up. Between her hair in her face and her patchwork dress and her hunched over posture, it just makes me laugh out loud! What a silly little hooligan! Love it! 

After leaving the park, we grabbed sandwiches at a nearby bar and grill and then headed into town for ice cream cones from the candy shop! That's one of my favorite treats!

It turned out to be a great day, with just a little rough patch sandwiched in the middle. It's a good reminder to me to not give up hope when things aren't going my way.    

Enjoying ice cream with Grandma and Grandpa in front of the candy shop on a beautiful night

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