Sunday, October 09, 2011

Days to Bottle Up and Remember

Hallie bought Landon some glow bracelets. This week she got them out, and the kids had fun having a bath in the dark.

We mentioned earlier that Landon had learned how to ride this week. He and Dad continued practicing, and they even brought Eliza on the kangaroo seat. She loves feeling the rush of wind as she rides, and she coos and giggles as we go along. 

We had some fun time traveling this weekend. We decided that, as this is the last fall weekend that we won’t be involved in something locally, we would take a last minute trip up north to see the fall leaves. We didn’t go as far as the tunnel of trees north of Petoskey and Traverse City (all the hotel rooms were either booked or pricey), but we did go up to Cadillac and take in some country roads along our route. What a weekend to travel in Michigan! Clear skies, temperatures in the upper 70s to low 80s, and dry air with hardly a hint of humidity.

We stopped off at Uncle John’s Cider Mill just north of Lansing. Landon and Eliza tooled around in the playground, and we bought apple cider and donuts to give us sustenance along our way.

The afternoon light at our backs showed off the beautiful hues of yellow, orange, and red that continued to deepen the further north we went. The following morning we headed south and west. We saw more amazing trees and even some deer as we took a fall foliage route along the back roads.

With Landon in our own tree tunnel

The above are views from the Caberfae Scenic Overlook in the Manistee National Forest outside of Cadillac 
We played in the early afternoon in Holland, a gem of the Lake Michigan shores. A couple of years back we took a trip there, so we wanted to take advantage of being out roughly that way to take in the farmers market and the beach (and Gandolfo’s Deli, a taste of New York by way of Utah). Instead of returning to Tunnel Park, we opted to go to Holland State Park this time. Hallie bought Landon a kite as a surprise, and he set it flying as soon as he got onto the sand.

After a bit of that, Landon, Eliza, and Mike went down to the beach while Hallie relaxed in the shade further up shore. Eliza played a little on the beach with Landon before the two of them ventured into the lake’s chilly waters. It didn’t take us too long to get used to the water, and Eliza jumped and splashed with Landon (with Dad’s help to keep her upright).
Practically flies itself! 
Nothing like a little grit to clean out the system

(Similar scene two years ago. What a difference two years makes!) 
The coordinating outfits are purely coincidental.
"Big Red" and boats entering and leaving Holland Harbor
Lots of people were out enjoying the warm sun and cool, dry breeze. In fact, one shop owner joked that all of Chicago had come to town. We didn't bother to take a crowd shot.

Landon decided he wasn't hungry for dinner, so we took his sandwich back to the hotel. Eliza found it.
The following morning, the kids and Dad enjoyed the hotel pool. Once again, Eliza could not get enough of playing in the water and swimming around with her big brother. We celebrated Landon’s birthday with lunch out on the patio of California Pizza Kitchen. The kids behaved themselves, our waitress was very friendly and attentive, and of course the food (BBQ chicken salad and Thai chicken salad) was delicious. Eliza could not get enough of Mike’s meal. We remarked about we wished we could take days like these and bottle up the memories!  

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