If you're weary of reading about my family outings, then just scroll down to the riveting discussion of ghosts.
If you're remotely interested in what I did this weekend, here are some photos. I regret that they don't include what would have been the best shot: an alligator snoozing beside an empty beer bottle. Alex and I came across that humorous scene while paddleboating at the lake on Saturday. I've never been more miffed at myself for being without my camera.
Jessica and Wesley showed up late Saturday night with significant others in tow, so it was a full house. We stayed up way, way too late watching movies but managed to drag ourselves out of bed at a reasonable hour to strap the canoe on the car and head to the creek. I rented two more canoes when we got there and off we went.
Of course the kids hammed it up the entire time. Wesley decided he'd wear my hat after I assured him that it didn't look gay, merely homoerotic. Lucas wore a safari hat - the perfect androgenous headware for a little boy frequently mistaken for a little girl.
Wes and Courtney, ever spontaneous, pulled the boat on shore and climbed out onto a fallen tree for a picture.
I spotted a brown water snake in a dead Christmas tree floating near the shore. I took a shot of him and then grabbed him so the kids could pet him.
It's not a good idea to grab snakes if you don't know what kind they are, but living with a reptile expert like Larry, I've learned to identify them at a glance. Of course, the kids all thought it was great and everyone took turns petting the snake which, fortunately, was more interested in escaping than biting.
Courtney and Brandon's mothers are apparently afraid of snakes. I'm sure they'll be thrilled when they see pictures from the canoe trip. If it makes them feel any better, their children appear to be phobia-free and show potential to be really good snake handlers.
Even Jessica petted the snake, and was such a good sport all the way around, risking additional sunburn to the dose she received yesterday at the beach. Here's a picture of her paddling the canoe. I really love this shot of her.
The kids decided to race their canoes back on the last leg of the journey. Larry and I considered joining the competition, but were quickly reminded of how decrepit we are and adopted a more leisurely pace as Lucas, sitting between us, cheered for both teams.
It was such a nice weekend, and although I've said it here many times before it's the simple things in life that bring us the most joy. I can't think of any material thing, any professional accomplishment that brings me as much pure joy as an afternoon with my family.
Now that my two oldest children have such wonderful companions the happiness of being with them has only increased. I am so extremely grateful.
It was just the most wonderful day and then, when I went outside after it was nearly over I saw this.
Like I said, even the sunset was perfect.
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