up in the north woods

We’re spending the next few days celebrating my mother in law’s birthday here in northern Wisconsin.  We flew in on Thursday, visited with our friends Lisa and Mike (recently transplanted from CA), then drove up here yesterday to surprise Kris’ mom.

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It’s always a lot of fun getting together up here.  We’ve got 12 people sharing on bathroom, the wood ticks are biting, and you can’t find decent vegetarian food to save your life.  On the other hand, our kids get to see their cousins only once or twice a year, and they really enjoy reconnecting with each other.




I spent a while throwing the baseball with my nephew, and took Rachel, and my nieces canoeing.  Then we took the kids swimming at the pool.


Kris and I both grew up around extended family, and really wish our kids lived closer to their cousins.


My in-laws maintain a canoe for me at their lake home.  I’m not very competent in it, but have a good time.  This evening I continued my track record of questionable judgment in said canoe.  After an afternoon of rough weather, the clouds cleared and the sun came out.  The water looked pretty calm, so I figured I’d have a fairly easy time paddling out and watching the loons.  Well – plans changed when I went out due east, then tried to turn to the south to loop back towards the dock.  The wind was strong enough that I couldn’t turn the canoe even 45 degrees to the right.  After struggling for a while, I turned hard left, figuring I’d try coming about the other way.  I ended up paddling back across to the other side of the lake, and circling into the wind along the opposite shore.  Eventually I made it back, but went three times as far as I’d planned.


When I came in, the adults were gathered around a fire in the backyard, laughing at my struggle and eating s’mores.  The kids were fishing off of the dock, ever optimistic.


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