|This little building was used often in preparation for the Thursday fish fry!|
I have been trying to post Big Sand pictures all week, but with NBS, hosting the youth group, Lydia's birthday, a trip to Hudsonville to pick up Seth's new glasses, going in to work for my one-year performance review, and spending 1/2 day at the Kent County courthouse on a jury summons (more about that later) I just could not carve out enough time to wade through pictures. So, finally, today as it is a little rainy (but clearing) outside I will sit with a cup of coffee and look at the memories I captured on film last week. As usual the first week home from Big Sand I am a little emotionally "fragile" so I'll try to find a corner of the house where I can shed a few tears without the kids wondering what on earth is wrong. Actually, they are probably used to it by now so they won't be too alarmed.
We missed playing "I-spy the sign" on our way to Evergreen Lodge because the golf ball has been taken down. Dan turned the 9-hole golf course into a disc golf course which the family (esp Anna) thoroughly enjoyed.
|We found the golf ball sign on the trails behind the golf course.|
Dave and Nikki drew the short straw and had to share cabin 11 with the Hermans. Nicolas loved having someone wake him up for fishing every morning (Dave), Caleb loved bonding with Finn, Lydia loved rooming with and mothering Nora (and sharing her gum:), and we all loved spending time with this family that we don't get to see often enough. I forgot how busy a preschooler and a toddler can be, especially when one of them isn't feeling well (Nora had ear issues much of the week). Dave and Nikki handled it all with God-given grace and patience. They truly are wonderful parents.
|Our home for the week|
I felt so bad for Dad as he was sick most of the week with a nasty virus that gave him a throat so sore he didn't even want to swallow, a fever that alternately gave him the chills and sweats, and simply, just wiped him out. He was feeling slightly better by the pontoon fishing outing on Friday, but was out of commission most of the week. I am so glad he is feeling better now, but I am sure he would like a Big Sand "do-over".
|Pontoon fishing on Friday was cold!|
|The younger crowd getting ready for their shuttle to the pontoon.|
Caleb talked me into trying to wakeboard. I did get up fairly easily, but had trouble figuring out how to get across the wake. I also learned a very painful lesson about pulling your swimsuit down after getting up--"pick with the right!"
After 40 years of one-week vacations at Big Sand it is interesting to see how ones’ views change as to what makes the week enjoyable or a "success". As a kid an enjoyable week was measured by putting on your suit and swimming every day, drinking pop and eating Cheetos on the beach, skiing on a calm lake, spending time with aunts, uncles, and cousins, getting a great tan for school in the fall, escaping poison ivy (or ticks or swimmers itch), and being able to catch walleye.
As a young married couple a successful week was having the timing of pregnancies coordinate with the week, having kids that slept well for naps and at night, and finally, just watching your kids have a good time enjoying and exploring the place you have grown to love.
Now an enjoyable or successful week is one in which the entire family is able to be there--no empty spots. A week in which I can watch the love and camaraderie of cousins, and I;m able to escape the busyness of life back at home for a week (Although, I still enjoy eating Cheetos on the beach.).
It is interesting, however, to see how each of my kids has their own "recipe" for a successful vacation: how many times they skied or wakeboarded, having warm weather for swimming, eating bars/sweets and drinking a can of pop every day, playing games at night with uncles, catching the big northern, staying up late, spending time with cousins, eating a big breakfast at the Logging Camp, etc. I forget sometimes how time (age?) has changed me and am thankful for the wonderful uncles (and father!) my kids have that understand and remember what it was like to be young. They take my kids fishing when it makes no practical sense or take them on a ski run when it is freezing and all you want to do is yell, "Are you nuts?!". At what point do we lose our spontaneity and become practical and responsible? I'm glad I have kids to remind me that it is okay to live outside the box ...
|Guess which child loves to play games with his uncles?|
|Guess which child looks forward to the big breakfast at the Logging Camp? Thanks again, Grandpa!|
|Yep, this one is always fishing for that big northern.|
|They sat together at every meal|
|Seth enjoyed playing with these boys both in and out of "school time". This is the second year their families have been sandwiched between the Bleeker cabins.|
|It is also fun to have an uncle who thinks outside the box with sand castles/sculptures.|
What a blessing to have clear skies with full moon!
Good-bye Big Sand...hope to see you next year.