We don't have much going on by way of summer plans this year since our 2 big major projects (baby and house addition) have trumped everything else. But when we got an invitation from James & Rosanna to spend a few days at James' family cabin in Oroville, Washington, we couldn't pass it up.
The cabin sits on a beautiful spot on Lake Osoyoos where the sun is always shining and the water is pleasant. And with a trailer and a second smaller cabin on the property, there was plenty of sleeping space for the others in the Toews family as well as Rosanna's parents to all be there enjoying it together.
(Silas & Keziah)
We arrived on the 4th of July and had a prime viewing location for some fantastic fireworks. It reminded Erik, the kids, and I of our fireworks experiences on the lake at my parents' cabin in summers past. The fireworks started before it was dark and kept going on and on and until we all decided we were too tired to watch anymore...
(Caleb, Micah & Keziah)
The number one activity and definite highlight for all the little cousins was Uncle James' famous tube rides. Kudos to James for the many, many hours spent behind the wheel of that motor boat, keeping 4 eager little tubers quite content.
(Micah & Caleb)
(Silas & Keziah's turn)
Elissa & I watched nervously from the boat while our little ones bounced around like rag dolls on the back of that tube - we were waiting for the first spill, knowing it was inevitable. And sure enough, one by one they all made it into the water over the course of the weekend. Despite a few tears, they were all game to go back on - some of them even begging to be dumped again!
Uncle James had a system of how "spicy" the tube ride would be based on the number of jalapenos they requested. After a few initial rides, the ideal number ended up being "Jalapeno 3" and the kids begged for it over and over and over again...
There were some though that requested less spicy rides. Grandma & Grandpa took Emerson for a pretty tame ride.
Heck, they even convinced Elissa and I to get on that tube. Our ride was probably jalapeno minus one and we still screamed like school girls the entire time. It brought me back to all the reasons why I disliked boating adventures as a kid...
Thankfully the kids loved every minute of it.
(My blonde boys...)
On day 3, the kids got really brave. After watching Daddy and Uncle Doug get up on the waterskis, they were begging to try them too.
James had all sorts of contraptions for them to try out. Micah went first and had the most success. He got up quickly holding onto this bar on the side of the boat.
Next he tried getting up using this short rope attached to the bar. It proved to be a lot trickier - especially to keep those skis together...
Next up was Keziah - she didn't have much success but gave it a good try!
And even Silas gave it a whirl - James gave him some special skis that were tied together. He didn't get out of the water but I think he had fun trying :)
A few of them tried the knee board as well. Keziah got going right away but when she stopped the knee board came up and bopped her pretty hard in the mouth. She was done with it after that.
(Silas getting warmed up with Grandpa after another tube ride.)
When we weren't on the boat, there were plenty of other things to keep us occupied... like entertaining 5-month-old cousin Sawyer.
Auntie Elissa came up with a scavenger hunt one afternoon.
There was some great food to be enjoyed as well...
Waffles baked over a fire? Yes please :)
Baby Katie was a fan too...
And enjoyed being entertained by her big boy cousins.
Uncle Erik getting in some Sawyer time. Hard to believe we'll be having another one of these little people in our family very soon...
Speaking of which... At over 8 months pregnant, I took it pretty easy. I could be found lounging on a lawn chair by the lake or - when I got too hot - lounging on an air mattress in the water. I figured I should soak in these last few weeks of pregnancy where baby is nicely incubated inside and relatively easy to care for :)
All in all, we had a fantastic time. The kids will have fond memories of our time in Oroville.
Thanks James & Rosanna for a great time!!