Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween from a looking-entirely-too-grown-up Hermione, and my cute little Pidwidgeon the owl. 🙂

Yes, yes, his wings did take four hundred years to put together. 

I mean, seriously, can you stop looking 16 here?

And this is what happens when you try to take pictures of 7 great grand babies in their Halloween costumes…..

L.O.L. I love them all. 🙂 And this was just a few of the hilarious ones! 

But you have better luck when you isolate the littles…..

Fall Break 2017

Well, fall break has come and gone, and it was a good one. Not nearly long enough, of course. 🙂 We camped hard this past week! We started with the first weekend at Dale Hollow Dam with my family and friends, and then on Monday we packed up the camper, and headed up to Roan Mountain State Park with Jake’s family. Liz and the kids, Mama Judy, and Jennie stayed in a cabin, and we stayed at the campground in our camper. Then, on Friday, we packed up and headed back to the dam to finish out the weekend. Mama Judy and Jennie came and stayed in our camper at the Dam, too! This was Jennie’s first time to camp. 🙂 Today we packed up for the third time, and came home. We were all really happy to see our house, even though our vacation was wonderful. But being away always makes you appreciate home even more, doesn’t it? 

I’ll tell the rest of our tale with pictures….

We didn’t get to the campground until late on Friday night, so Saturday we just lazed around all day….

We even went over to the lake with Shshr for a little bit for a ride in her boat. I love the lake at anytime of the year! 

And the crazy kiddos swam in the freezing water! In October, no less! 

Saturday night we celebrated sweet Kinley’s third birthday….

Sunday  it rained ALL day, but that has never stopped our fun while we’re camping! The kiddos certainly didn’t let a little rain stop the bike riding….

Sunday night we settled in fora night in the camper, and went over to Ta and Tommy’s to play some games. We taught Jack how to play Train Dominos (and no, he is never still enough for a picture)

And both of the kiddos always love playing Go Fish with Tommy. 🙂

Monday we packed up and made the loooongggg drive to Roan Mountain. We got there after dark, and got set up and headed over to the cabin to hang out for a bit. 

Tuesday we started exploring the park. 

Wednesday we did our first big hike on the Appalachian trail with the kiddos. We started at Carver’s Gap, and first hiked up to Round Bald. At that point, Mama Judy and Jennie turned around and headed back down the mountain, but Liz and her kids and Jake and I and our kiddos hiked on, first to Jane Bald, and then to Grassy Ridge- it was about a 5 mile hike round trip, and all the kids did great! It was definitely not what I would call an “easy” hike, either- lots of hills and rocks to scramble over! We were proud of them. 🙂 

My love. 🙂

The rhododendrons were so cool! We want to go back in June sometime so we can see them all blooming. 

We ended the night with a lot of relaxing and card playing….Jake taught all the kids how to play Black Jack and poker….because, you know, LIFE SKILLS. 

Thursday we all went to an apple orchard, and then after lunch, Jake and I and the kids and Liz and her kiddos hit the Appalachian Trail again, this time over by Lake Watauga, to a place called Laurel Fork Falls. It was another 5 mile round trip, and the kids did great again! This was a hike Jake and I had done before, a couple of years ago, but none of the others had. It is a gorgeous hike! 

After we finished hiking, we went over to the lake to let the kiddos play a little bit….

Friday morning we packed up and hit the road again to Dale Hollow. 

Jack got to pick our lunch spot….McDonald’s, of course. 

We did a WHOLE lot of relaxing over the weekend, and on Saturday the kiddos and Jake went squirrel hunting with Pappy. The kids went with Pappy, and ended up cutting the squirrel hunting short in favor of fishing and getting ice cream at the dock. 🙂 But Jake got two squirrels….with his pistol! He’s a good shot. 🙂

I love a good fire while we’re camping! 

Andy and Christie and the kiddos were here this weekend, and our kids were thrilled to get to see them and hang out for a bit! 

The kids took Jennie on a tour of the fish hatchery this morning. They think no trip to the Dam is complete without seeing the hatchery. 

It was a great trip, but like I said, there is no place like home. 🙂 Back to school tomorrow!