Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Lake Almanor- buy me a boat & that's a wrap

Up and ready to go! We spent enough time beside the lake to see the way to go was from a boat on the lake. We made a reservation to rent a pontoon boat for the afternoon from the dock up the road. 
 The boat was so much fun and the weather was great. Sunny and warm but not too hot out on the water. 
It wasn't crowded at all so it almost seemed like we had the lake to ourselves. 

After cruising around the lake for a while we had to stop to get in that water. Gemma held the flag for swimmers in the water. 
The inflatable slide was likely the highlight. Everyone had a turn down the slide. Well, Danny may have skipped the slide and just jumped off the deck. 
It was cold in the lake but felt refreshing. The water was pretty still and no wind. 

After plenty of swimming time we decided to explore around the lake again. Everyone got a turn to drive the boat. 
A few Titanic scenes were played out. 

After about four hours on the water and another round of swimming and water slide it was time to return the boat. Luckily we had  some fun planned for back at the cabin. 
We brought supplies to tie dye T-shirts.
It feels almost like summer camp here. We did see a girl scout troop camping up the road. They were tie dying shirts too but we didn't steal the idea. 
While the moms did crafts the Dad's stole away to a nearby brewery to buy some beers and matching hats. 
Then it was Hawaii night at the cabin. We made Luau food for dinner, pulled pork and all the fixings. 
The kids even tried to put on a hula talent show of sorts. We should be all ready for Hawaii by next summer. 
The next morning was our last full day at the lake. We checked to see how our tie dye shirts turned out. Not bad at all!
Danny was pleased.
They all turned out great and each one unique. 
One more day on the lake in the sun. Splashing and playing games in the water. 
I think a little too much sun and a bit of sunburn too. 
The moms know how to have some fun!
We had a great little summer get away and quite possibly could become lake life people after all. A little country music, a cooler of beer, and a boat is all we need. 
Our final morning saying goodbye before we all start the long drive home. 
Getting in one last hug before you are stuck back at your own house and no hugging friends! We sure miss the Brady family and are already making big plans for our summer trip to Hawaii 2021!

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Lake Almanor - Indian Falls hike

On Sunday we thought we would take in more of the area and try to find a local hike. We didn't want to drive as far as the Lassen Volcanos national park since we had been driving so much the previous days. 
We found a local short hike to Indian Falls about 20 minutes drive away.
The short path from the parking area was lined with poison oak so of course I was shouting at the kids to stay on the path the whole time down. 
We were rewarded with a beautiful rocky falls area with some shallow pools throughout. 
Perfect opportunity to photos.

Alex managed to prop up his phone and set the photo timer so we could get a shot with all of us.

We had read about being able to swim in the pools but after the two nurse moms got a look at the foamy green water we vetoed the idea, although I'm sure it would be fine, we were not taking any chances. 

All the girls brought their polaroid cameras so they got a shot with the waterfall and their friends. 
After our little excursion we headed back to the cabin for lunch and another afternoon swimming at the lake. We were back to the house for dinner again and sitting out on the deck in the evenings watching the bats fly overhead. 

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Lake Life - Almanor

Having all our vacation plans dashed for the year was a hard blow during Covid. We had a big spring break trip to Paris and Amsterdam all planned and paid for that got dashed. We had a big trip to Kauai with our Brady family besties all planned for July. We were trying to hold out hope that Hawaii would open up but unfortunately it wasn't meant to be. We made the decision to book a cabin up in the mountains so we could meet up somewhere half way and at least see the Brady's and get away for a few days. 
We met up in Shasta in 2018 and had a blast so we decided to repeat that trip. Apparently the whole world is renting cabins this summer because you cannot really take other vacations so everything in Shasta was booked up. We ended up booking a cabin on Lake Almanor, CA having pretty much no idea about the area. Lily and Gemma spent weeks working on their "Shasta" binder. They refused to call it Almanor, they're just sticking with Shasta. They made plans for activities, packing lists etc. They spent an entire week packing their bags and I checked absolutely none of it. Between work and getting food ready to go they were on their own. 
On Friday morning we woke at 5:30am and were packed to the gills. Winsty got to join us on vacation since the kennels are not open and we knew he and Goppy would not enjoy each others company. 
We checked in with the Brady family and they were well on their way. The drive was longer for them since Lake Almanor is further south than Shasta. Sorry guys!
We made one stop on the way up at a rest stop. We had packed a lunch and Winsty needed a stretch. We wanted to avoid many stops and any crowds. Luckily the rest stop was all newly painted and cleaned and they were there cleaning the bathrooms as well. Most people were wearing masks and only removed them to eat. We took a dunk in hand sanitizer before returning to the car. These are some strange times I tell you. 
We all arrived in Lake Almanor at our rented cabin around 3:30-4pm. The kids wasted no time exploring and picking out a bed. We wiped down all the surfaces with lysol  wipes and brought sleeping bags for everyone to use. Considering the entire county only has one case of Covid we felt pretty safe. 

That evening after dinner we busted out the s'mores. There was no fire pit so we made use of the BBQ grill. After plenty of chatting we all settled to sleep. The four girls all had a room upstairs and Danny had a bed in the upstairs Den and Ann and David had a bedroom up there as well. The downstairs bedroom was for Alex, Winston and I. The house has a funky layout where you have to go through the downstairs bedroom to get to the upstairs but otherwise it was fine. 
The next morning we were up and bright ready to go to the lake. We got matching shirts for the girls which they all loved. They also had coordinating swimsuits we had planned ahead of time too.
The Dad's were in charge of blowing up all the inflatables for the lake. Luckily there was a swimming beach just a few minutes walk up the road. Otherwise all the lake access is blocked by private homes. 

We hauled all our gear to the beach and wasted no time going in. 
Gemma and Natalie had matching purple swimsuits and Lily and Kat had navy blue. 
We still wish we were wearing them in Hawaii but that will have to wait for next summer. 
Even Alex took the boat out for a spin. The weather was great, warm but not too hot. The water was cold but not freezing. 
Everyone loved playing on Terry the Turtle. The perfect spot to sunbathe. 
The kids were all so excited to be around friends and have fun playing together. It has been such a long time stuck at home. 
Sweet Danny boy shares my affinity for cheetos. He said we could call him cheeto as a nickname and by the end of the week that is the only name he would answer to.

The kids spent the majority of the time in the water. Only getting out for lunch or more sunscreen. It was not crowded at all and everyone at the beach had plenty of room to spread out. 
We brought our easy-up to provide enough shade for everyone and also to block off  enough space for our group on the beach. After a long day in the sun we walked back to the cabin to relax and make dinner. We brought all our food from home and planned out meals so we would not have to do too much on vacation and also not have to go out to stores or restaurants. 
After dinner we decided to take a walk through the town to check things out. Not much to see just one main road through Prattville and one little restaurant Carol's Cafe. 
There was a lake front cabin for the Davis family. Too bad we didn't have the keys. 
Our sweet little brother mascot Danny. He likes the no poop zone.