We packed the truck, swung the door of the cabin shut, and started our 5 hour trek to BG. We stopped in Cuttingsville, 8 minutes later, for a leisurely breakfast at the local cafe, stuffed ourselves on pancakes and french toast and bacon, stretched and got the wiggles out in the field out back, and then loaded up again.
Five hours later, with a single fuel stop, (Alexe is buckling to my road-tripping ways!) we arrived at BG.
BG, Blooming Grove, is a hunting and fishing club on a large chunk of land in PA. Alexe's great grandfather (or great great uncle?), then great uncle and grandmother, and now her uncle Ted have been members since the 40s, and it's a wonderful place to gather with her extended family. For a hunting and fishing club, the focus on family and children seems primary to me, and there are never ending ponds and streams to visit, the central lake to play in, and loosely organized activities to participate in. It's a little heaven for kids, safe and fun and free. One of Alexe's favorite parts of her childhood, which makes it even nicer to see our kids running wild around here.
We arrived, everyone was out doing things, so we grabbed some towels and headed straight to the lake.
It was an amazing day, the drive wasn't bad, and the lake was gorgeous.
Dear Alexe: You look great in a bikini. I don't want to hear any grief about capturing it on camera.
We met up with the five cousins, daughters of Jenny and Laurent, in descending order: Anne, Phoebe, Julliette, Celeste, and Orielia. (Apologies for the misspellings.) Ages 11 to 2.5, these are Annaliese and Caspian's only cousins, and we were very excited about having them all together.
The Nicault clan absorbed Annaliese and Caspian without missing a beat. Wonderful girls, they take care of each other, watch the younger ones when necessary, and generally seem very self sufficient. While the grown-ups made dinner, the kids took off to pick blueberries by the lake.
The blueberries were ripe, and everywhere. Whenever we walked anywhere, there had to be extra time for blueberry snacking.
Annaliese and the eldest Nicault, Anne.
Caspian and the second oldest Nicault, Phoebe, with the youngest, Orielia. This trio kept going around the lake, and didn't come back until dinner was half over. The comfort level with an older girl watching the younger kids took a little while to settle over us. Alexe and I took a walk to check on them, but they were more than fine, intently filling their buckets with blueberries.
Caspian took his blueberry picking very seriously, and was proud of his harvest.
Celeste is missing from this picture, imagine one more blond head in the crowd. It was awesome.
We went back to u.Ted and a.Judy's cabin, a short trip around the lake, to the lovely suite with screened in porch that we shared with the kids, and by 10 pm finally got them to asleep. They were a bit wired.
Days at BG tend to be full, and with all the water-related playing, the pictures that I got are a small fraction of the wonderful time we had. Still, the next few posts will be long, enjoy.