Just came back from a crazy weekend upstate. my father-in-law retired, so we went to celebrate for a long weekend and crammed in a heap of stuff.
Dave took the day off on Friday, and we drove up; had lunch at Stew Leonard's (which has the lamest petting zoo ever, although Ben liked the chickens); went shopping a bit at an outdoor store up there. I bought new Dansko sandals, which were super comfortable the whole weekend until today. Then we got to Middletown, had dinner and went to bed.
Saturday was HUGE - we got up - packed up our gear (some of which was bought at the aforementioned outdoor store) and took the kids canoeing for the first time. I think Dave would have preferred a kayak, but a canoe was more feasible with the four of us. We went to this pretty lake and saw geese, lots of water lilies and two turtles sunning themselves on a log. Well, let me tell you, this was the highlight of Ben's little existence, he spent the rest of the weekend babbling to one and all about "Tuttles in da wadda!"
Came home, and the family arrived for the next phase of the festivities. Dave's sister Christine arrived from Ithaca and their other sister, Kathy, her husband Travis and daughter, Maddy came for dinner. Kathy is due with baby #2 in two weeks, and looks amazing, I have to say. Had a nice family dinner, followed by a trip to a local institution, Blueberry Mountain, for ice cream and sorbet. Yum.
At home again, and Dave and I executed the next phase of our plan - operation CAMPOUT! He had borrowed a tent and air mattresses from Travis and we pitched the tent and set up in the back yard. We all got ready for bed, and headed to our campsite. All things considered, it went brilliantly. Claire fell instantly and deeply asleep. Ben was so knackered, he fell asleep in Dave's arms, and was transferred to his little bed (which was his pack-in-play mattress set on the floor between Dave's and my mattresses. I took a little while to get used to the cool breeze, sounds of traffic and katydids. But once I did, I slept wonderfully. At some point, Ben woke up and freaked the hell out, since he didn't know what the eff was going on, but amazingly, Claire stayed asleep! Ben finally settled down, but spent the rest of the night sleeping on top of Dave. At one point, this morning, I looked over and saw Ben sort of draped over Dave's neck!
Camping was a success and now we're planning another trip to a real campground for an overnight.
Sunday we all went to the Mohonk Mountain House, which is an old resort up in the 'Gunks, built 145 years ago or so, it definitely has a Sagamore Hill vibe to it - but it's a hotel, spa, and private park - they also have a legendary Sunday brunch, and with your entry to brunch you can explore the grounds and common areas of the hotel - wide verandas with comfy rocking chairs, overlooking the mountains or a lake. Really lovely day, but by the end, Claire and Ben were done behaving and I was glad to get home again.