Monday, July 2, 2007

Our first summer vacation

We got to enjoy our first vacation of the summer last week, and I only had to use 1 day of vacation time to do it! I happen to work in a hospital pharmacy that is open 24/7, and one of the overnight pharmacists took time off the weekend of June 22-24. I volunteered to work those 3 nights, which gave me 4 days off the following week. Add in a day of vacation on Friday and voila, a whole week off to go camping with the family. I got home from work at 7:30 am on Monday, took a nap until about noon, then hooked up the camper and off we went to MacNider campground in Mason City. This is a nice campground run by the city's Parks & Rec dept, right next door to the city's pool facility. The Winnebago river runs just adjacent to the campground, and on the other side of the river is Mason City's largest park, East Park.

Monday and Tuesday were HOT, and the whole family enjoyed the pool both days. It was great to watch Sarabeth, Nathan and Juliana romping in the water. They all loved going underwater, time after time---no fear (which is dangerous). We had to keep a close eye on them. I think swimming lessons are in the near future! Sarabeth had never been swimming in China, so this was her first time. I think she's hooked.

On Wednesday the weather cooled off a little and we went crawdad hunting in the river. We caught quite a few along with some minnows. There was a huge flock of geese on the riverbank which Mary and the kids were feeding bread to. The geese would eat right out of their hands. On Thursday, we celebrated Caitlin's 15th birthday! We took her out to breakfast at McD's and then took all the kids to the HUGE playground at East Park. That evening we went out for Chinese and played a round of Putt-putt at a local golf facility. All the kids had a great time. The weather was fantastic and we sat around the campfire until well past dark. The little ones enjoyed catching fireflies and watching the bats flutter overhead as they began their nightly search for bugs. We also sang Happy Birthday to Caitlin as she blew out the candles on some birthday cookies.

On Friday morning, it was time to pack up and go home. Caitlin needed to do laundry and pack up to go to camp at IRBC on Saturday. She is working in the dishroom all week this week during Family Camp 2. It was a short week, but an enjoyable time away from home. We were only about 10 miles from the house, but with no computers, TVs, phone etc., we were able to relax and enjoy family time together.

The weekend was spent doing things around the house, mowing the grass etc. We are hosting our church's July 4 picnic on Wednesday afternoon, so the yard needed some work.


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