Sunday, September 25, 2016

A (sort of!) Favorite New Spot

We just got home from Maddie's birthday camping trip. This year we went to Moffitt Beach Campground. The beach was not open in late September but that was OK with us! And why is it sort of new? Camp Fowler is just across the lake from the campsite. It was a beautiful spot and we have scoped out some other, nicer, camping sites for another time. Nicer only in that they are away from other people! We were packed in rather tight and our neighbor had a little dog that felt the need to bark at us on every bathroom and water trip. He also got loose twice which was not pleasant for any of us except the dog. Good thing the weather was beautiful and the scenery better than that! Maddie quickly found she could walk over the small rocks and "camp out" on the big rock at the end of the trail with her book, new art supplies and journals. I even joined her with my nature journal and knitting while Brian came out with the binoculars. I may also have taken a short nap on that rock! It was so lovely warm from the sun. 

camp! Friends loaned us the canopy for this trip. It was a good thing because there was a gentle, soaking rain on Friday night.

trail from our camp down to the lake
I started the impossible girl socks in the time traveler colorway that I gave to Maddie for her birthday.
Impossible Girl refers to one of Doctor Who's companions and the colors are of the infamous scarf.
As you can see from the pictures it was no surprise to get rain Friday night!

Camp Fowler was over there somewhere!

First try out to the rock!

Of course she made it!

Brian getting the first fire going. We saw that the campsites all had lovely fireplaces, some were even new! We got to our spot and the grill part was totally broken off and the surrounding rock broken. Brian was able to make it all work though!

Finally the birthday dinner made even better since it was heated up over the campfire! Homemade mac n cheese and hot dogs. Some cucumber and apple thrown in to make the parentals feel better.

Maddie enjoying the fire and her new Doctor Who Fairy Tale book.
The fire and new hat from Mamaw Mary keeping her warm.

Bacon for breakfast! And you can see in the background that the weather is looking up on Saturday morning.

This is more like it! 

Maddie warming up some more!
You can see some of the leaves were changing. Mostly reds and a few yellows.

Trail from the lake back up to the campsite

Then we went into Speculator to visit the Apple Festival!

Old car show. Very small one but fun to see them!
For Poppa Bill and Mamaw Mary! MG 1969

Hamilton County is having a celebration this year. I thought this display was really neat! It was all photographs families had shared of their ancestors who lived in Hamilton County. We loved looking at them and wondering at some of the stories behind the photos.

Brian spied this guy making pewter soldiers.

Maddie chose 3 for her desk. Maybe for her future ranger desk! 2 Revolutionary soliders (not British of course!) and a Highlander just because he is cool.

Then we stopped at the beach on our way back to our campsite. We couldn't swim but we met 2 momma mallards and an immature male mallard. Maddie had a grand time taking photos! I took 2 videos and you can hear her camera clicking away in the background. You can see those here and here.

I believe this is looking at Fowler. We were much closer here.

Duck prints! This was before our visitor arrived.

She came swimming to shore to see us. Obviously people feed them and they were quite confused that we didn't feed them!

Discussing that we had no food.

Immature male. His head was just starting to turn green.

More disbelief that we didn't have food!

Then we tried something new for dinner while! This was good but not as good as it could've been. Momma liked the clean up from it so we will be giving it another try! We decided that the crust needs to be thicker.
First we tried without a "tent" melting so....

we tried with a tent and that was better!

Obviously Maddie was hungry since she came back to us from her rock! 

This morning was just as beautiful but chores needed to be done and someone else was probably coming to our spot so we had to go. We plan on returning here again though! It was so pretty and lots of fun.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Celebrating 13!

Today was a fun day! We celebrated Maddie's 13th birthday a couple of days early so we could invite friends and family to the encampment at Saratoga National Park. We had a great time riding the tour road, visiting the re-enactors and ending it all with a picnic lunch and twix parfaits (with a very off key but rousing round of Happy Birthday!).

Twix parfait all ready to go in canning jars! Easy to carry-no cutting needed. 

Maddie made brownies for the rangers...who were very excited to have us there but even more excited to get brownies!

Dueling Cameras!
First stop the encampment!

Soup was boiling away in that pot and boy it smelled good!

Micah wasn't sure about the noise of the musket demonstration and Norah was kind enough to keep him company.

We found this lady using the glass to burn her initials into the bottom of the bowl. This was a new one on us! She explained that she was part of the cannon team. Her job is to light the slow match and the cannon. She is able to use this to light her slow match on super sunny days like today! The French sold this tool to the Continental Army.

Micah got to try!

The whole gang together!

He said "Wait! Who is the birthday girl!"

one more time! HUZZAH!!!

Ah, and then it was time to drill. This was not planned. They just jumped on having so many cheerful children I think!

Naomi was not getting left out of this fun!

Even if the gun was bigger than her.

Ah, that face, the "Oh darn, now I can't be a lefty any more!"

Bill helping Naomi tamp down the powder!


Kids with Buddy and Baldwin

Micah might be under that umbrella talking to Eamon!

It was good fun and now we are all pooped!! More birthday fun to come this week.