Tuesday, June 14, 2011

McCormick Lake

The spring rain has subsided and hot weather is finally here! One of my favorite family activities is a good old-fashioned camping trip. Let me just clarify; I'm not talking about campers and sites with toilets and showers - give me a tent, a secluded spot in the woods, and a body of water. That's what I call camping!

Last weekend, our family met our friends at a new spot; McCormick Lake.

"I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety." Psalm 4:8

We arrived just before the sun set, unpacked the car, set up the tents and were lulled to sleep by a symphony of bugs in the trees and loud croaking frogs in the nearby lake.

Saturday morning was quiet and tranquil and we were awakened by

the sun peering through the trees, birds noisily chirping overhead, and our youngest child, Richard, yelling he needed to go potty at the top of his lungs. Our eyes met the beauty of a thin fog that had settled on the lake and so the day began....

Luke enjoys a float on the placid lake with his new kayak.
The children busied themselves with cicada collecting and samurai training while Dale and I sipped our instant coffee in peace. 

Good morning, gorgeous Grace!
My sweet southern cousin, Stephanie, would call this "some sugars". Dale needed some sugars to go with his coffee. ;0)
After a breakfast of scrambled eggs with sauteed peppers and onions, garlic and onion fried potatoes, and deer sausage, we loaded up our Durango for a day of swimming on the Eleven Point River.

The boys are ready for some off-road adventure!

I had the pleasure of sitting in the back with these CraZy **but adorable** children. We sang songs, exaggerated bumps and pretended the huge leaves we plucked from the passing trees were bunny ears

Isn't it nice to see kids behaving like the children they are rather than mini-adults?
We spent hours swimming, castle building, fishing, floating, splashing, playing and exploring in and near the water. 

Best of friends....Grace and Belle.
The campground, and surrounding areas, were filled with butterflies! At times it felt like we were in a butterfly garden as dozens of them danced and fluttered around us at once.

Funny faces!

Noah had fun beating the water with a stick...
Can you imagine how hard it would be to eat an apple without your two front teeth?

Faith and Juliette

Peaceful and secluded....
When we returned home, Dale took each of our children kayaking.

Belle, my nature lover, finds a quiet place and fills her little heart with God's beautiful creation....

Sometimes the simplest, most common things hold an immense amount of beauty...
Loved the way the setting sun made these grasses glow....
   Meanwhile, Luke went fishing....for bullfrogs! I had no idea you could catch a frog on a hook. 

There was some question as to whether or not Dale would add Mr. Frog's legs to our evening meal, but Belle's tears and heartbroken protests quickly squelched that subject.

Finally after a long, memorable day, my friend, Amanda made a delicious beef stew with dumplings in her cast iron dutch oven and we enjoyed s'mores for dessert. 

That evening the children put on their bathing suits and we took them down to the creek for an extremely cold bath. I believe this was an experience none of us will soon forget. Though many of the children whimpered and cried through the process, it felt so good to be clean, smell nice, and go to bed feeling refreshed. Since the heat of the day subsided considerably once the sun went down, a restful sleep was had by all.

The next morning, Belle and Grace found a quiet place to read God's Word together....
"How can a young person stay on the path of purity?
   By living according to your word.
 I seek you with all my heart;
   do not let me stray from your commands.
I have hidden your word in my heart
   that I might not sin against you." Psalm 119:9-11
 Jacob observed the wildlife across the lake...

Noah worked on his samurai skills...
Richard sat in a chair and rested (you know that boy had to be plum tuckered!!)...

and Juliette and Faith walked around quietly together...

Meanwhile, Luke cooked up another great breakfast of bacon, eggs, and hash-browns.

And then it was time to pack up and head home.....

Thank you, Amanda, for capturing this priceless moment for me!
Except it was Sunday morning and we had the whole day ahead of us! Our family wanted to squeeze in as much goodness as we could from our uninterrupted time together, so we separated from our friends and took the long way home. We found ourselves at Falling Springs...
The "Thomas Brown Cabin" built in 1851.
A half-dovetail joint used on the Brown cabin. It helped shed water off the corners of the cabin and may be the reason it is still in good condition today.
The children sit beneath Falling Spring Mill, built between 1927 and 1929. It was used to grind corn for feed, saw out shingles, saw firewood, and generate electricity on the site.

The Crown Wheel at Falling Spring Mill

From there we went to a Conservation Center...

Belle would love to get this close to a live deer!

By then it was lunch time, so we stopped at a charming dairy bar; Jolly Rogers and enjoyed some food and ice cream. 

Then we headed to our next destination; Big Spring, and enjoyed a little more swimming.

Dale thinks he's a shark...

Proof that I was there. ;0)
Now that's what I call a jam-packed, fun-filled weekend!

1 comment:

clambert11 said...

I saw this update eons ago, but never logged on to comment! Sounds like a great trip. I love camping and some of my best childhood memories are from our family camping trips. Great job making memories with your fam!