Tuesday morning started nicely with hot baths then a tasty breakfast of biscuits and microwave scrambled eggs! (No skillet, remember?) However, we decided after this meal to abandon eating at the dining table. While it was a beautiful piece of handmade furniture, it was clearly built for Half-Giants! Instead of the table top being rib-high, the average height for most dining room tables, this one was chest-high. My 6YO had to sit on her knees and my 4YO actually needed two pillows under her just to reach her plate. Even my wife and I felt like little kids again!
Breakfast was followed by a lovely walking tour of some of the property’s 20 acres with our geriatric poodle in tow. The kids enjoyed watching the grey squirrels all around and the countless frogs in the ponds out front.
We also spent some time checking out a nearly dried out creek bed where the kids were able to stand in the middle of the deep gorge where deep water flowed once upon a time. We even met this fearless fellow up close among the exposed roots of an old tree.
Next, we made our way across the meadow-like front yard and made of a game of looking for snake holes. When we reached the lake and the dock it was clear the photo on the website had been taken some time ago. It was in disrepair and there was no paddle boat. Nevertheless, we enjoyed watching the minnows swim along the lake’s edge and tried to spot fish swimming further out.
On our way back to the house I suggested we let Casper off leash. There were no woods around and I couldn’t see him getting into anything he shouldn’t in the open meadow. Not even a minute after he’d been let loose one of the few cars we’d seen came rumbling down the road pulling a U-Haul trailer. At that moment our very old, very lazy lap poodle decided to act like a young dog. He’s nearly deaf and so must have seen the car, even at that distance at the edge of the property because he immediately began barking and chasing it. Well, there was no way he was going to catch up to it, but he’d barely gone a few yards when I realized he wouldn’t be able to hear me calling him back. And perhaps it was the clean country air making him frisky, but he can apparently be fast when he wants to. Yikes!
Thankfully, his old age kicked in before he’d gotten very far and he gave up the chase. He made his way slowly, but proudly, back to us panting as if he’d never catch his breath. In fact, I don’t think he stopped panting for the rest of the trip. 😉
After our walking tour we had a simple lunch followed by a few hands of Nacho Loco (one of the few engaging games we’ve found for our 12YO through our 4YO) and the longest round of UNO I’d wager Moonstraka has ever seen!
Games was followed by a fun felt and glue Halloween craft my wife had planned. Here is the result!
Dinner that night was frozen pizzas which, thanks again to Moonstraka’s “fully equipped kitchen”, I was forced to snap in half over the handle of a wooden spoon so they would fit into the only air-bake cookie sheet we felt safe using.
Between pizza swaps in the oven we played sardines hide-and-seek. For anyone who’s never played sardines the basic rules (at least the ones we use) are as follows:
- Turn out as many lights as possible depending on the age of the players (and their boogieman barometer).
- One person goes to hide while the rest count loudly with their eyes closed.
- When the counting is done, the seekers seek.
- Whoever finds the hider (they get to be the hider next time), silently hides alongside them until all the seekers are packed into the hiding place like sardines.
We had a BLAST using every nook and cranny on all three levels!
After sardines was pajama-time then popcorn and ‘The Whipping Boy’ (movie), which was great fun. NOTE: it was surprisingly irritating to watch movies without a working VHS/DVD remote (I may have actually been surprised given what we’d experienced so far if it actually had worked) as we had to get up to pause the movie for every potty break or similar interruption. Still, everyone thoroughly enjoyed the movie and the youngest three played ‘Whipping Boy’ while hunting for rats (imaginary of course!) till bed and on into the rest of the trip.
All in all, we found day 2 to be much more relaxing than day 1.
Day 3 post coming soon . . .