Tuesday, July 14, 2009


So we're back from our vacation and already missing the place! Those of you sick of hearing about Camp Arcadia and how wonderful it is can stop reading now.

The only downside was poor Caitlin took a fall our second night there (I guess we shouldn't have let her ride that scooter down the gravel hill in the dark by herself...) So after we cleared the "road rash" from her knees and summoned Uncle Jim to do his best Principal/former PE teacher/Father of Four/First Aid Certified exam on her and conclude no broken bones, we iced her up good, gave her some motrin and put her to bed.

The next morning the swelling was way down, but she couldn't straighten or entirely bend her elbows. At breakfast we were relaying the story to our friends the Farleys at the table next to us and were thankfully overheard by the table behind us who pointed to a man kitty-korner and said "he's a doctor and he brought his bag". Not only was he an MD, he also had a PhD in philosopshy, so he was a Dr. doctor.

First thing he asked was how much medicine we gave her. I said 2 & 1/2 tsps and he looks Cait up and down, raises his eyebrows and repeats "Teaspoons?" I reply, "uhhh...yeah." Then he asks "Can she swallow pills?" I reply, "uhhh...yeah." He's a pretty gracious guy, but I could hear the "Duh!" in his head while he's looking at me and we agree to give her the adult dose (since she's the size of one) and then some right away. He concurs, no broken bones, and encourages more ice and we thank God we don't have to drive to the rinky-dink two bed "medical facility" in Frankfort for a cast (that was Ryan a few years ago) at the beginning of the trip. Unfortunately it kept her out of lots of limb-bending sports, i.e archery, pool (as in billiards), teatherball, ping-pong, etc. etc. but she was a good sport about it. Pun intended.

The beach disappeared some more as its prone to do, and the water was freezing all but one day, but it was still sunny and wonderful to just park on a low chair, read, talk and get some rays. My cousins Mary Ann & Bob were there, they have 11 kids age 27-5 - no joke -and all but one of them were there, plus a husband, two girlfriends and a new puppy, so it was fun to catch up and hang out with them. Bob (aka 'the saint') took a half dozen kids (only two were his) and walked them up the beach two miles ONE WAY to the north bluff - then climbed up the bluff TWICE with all of them and walked them all back while carrying a 10 pound boulder on his shoulder that one of them HAD to HAVE because it was so special (it looked like a gray rock to me). I met him to help walk them all back (most were 10 or under) and forgot how far it was in the 25 years since I'd last made the journey! Maybe that's the secret to staying fit. A dozen or so kids and five mile hikes in sand and water.

Ryan ate, slept, and breathed all things tournaments during the week - he played every sport there at least once I think and hung out with his buddy Kyle (also a 10 year old twin). There was one day I seriously think I only saw him at meals and bedtime.

Maggie spent about 1/3 of the week on a new merry-go-round at the park on the beach. Yes, that's right, you read "new" and "merry-go-round" in the same sentence. She hung out with her friends/cousins Angie, Meghan, Gretchen, Janine, Melainey and Kyle's twin Katie. She caught a beetle for the critter race early in the week, but alas the poor creature never made it to Friday. She had a blast ditching us for a cooler family in church (Paquettes) and during family game night.

We enjoyed getting to see some friends we hadn't seen in a looonnnggg while (that's you Jeff Moore) and many from home we always wish we could spend more time with (Steff, Jim, Beth) plus got some time to ourselves.

I actually played volleyball a couple of times (or tried to) and Dan played softball and golf. He did NOT go up in John Jass' flying lawn chair this year, much to my relief. We each had a couple of fun night's out (game night in the Trading Post, fire on the deck at McKenna's, wine on the pier with Beth) and nights in playing cards with the Ulbrichs. When a sleeping Jaden fell off the top of the couch onto a sleeping Ryan on the bottom of the couch, we determined it was time to go home. We also got a day in Traverse City at our favorite winery, Left Foot Charley where Bryan was good enough to take the young uns on a tour while I ate cheese and bread and sampled the cider.

The lectures were good with John Nunes at the helm and a panel of interesting people engaging everyone in (I greatly restrained myself and only chimed in three times all week!) The kids had a blast with the program staff leading them in a VBS type morning program and there were a TON of kids their ages there.

Our first night was 4th of July and we all did sparklers on the patio with strangers under a star-filled sky lit up like a lite bright. The mantra all night was "KEEP ONE LIT!" Since we collectively had one lighter that took 30 minutes to light the first one.

I have to admit, I think the thing I may have enjoyed most from a strictly vacation perspective was the meals. God bless Kurt. He's the chef and yes, it's chef, not cook - he's that good. There was something wholly wonderful about entering the dining room at the same time three times a day all week long, sitting down and being served a meal, I didn't shop for, think about, prepare or have to clean up! And they were all FABULOUS! I think I gained another five pounds. So this time, I'm seriously going to start the diet again. Really. I am.

I could go on and on (as most of you well know) but I think I'll save some for another night and actually try to post more than once a week now.

I have the song "Till We Meet Again" in my head and I know if Tammy's reading this she's crying now.

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