We're back and our trip to Lutsen, MN was a success, for the most part. ;) Driving 5 hours alone with both kids was easier than I thought it would be. Sydney fussed only one time, for just a few minutes and stopped as soon as Sam started singing to her. Now how cute is that? For both the ride there and back Samuel did great, but got a little feisty toward the end (think kicking the DVD player!).
Minnesota's north shore of Lake Superior is just beautiful. I really enjoyed looking at the scenery as I listened to the beautiful accompaniment of Little Einstein's music from Sam's cartoon. ;) But honestly Sam enjoyed the scenery too; though he was mostly interested in passing by trains, driving through the tunnels built into the cliffs around the shore, and driving past mining areas. So I'd say we both got something out of the deal. And Sydney, well, she just liked sleeping, watching her big brother, and blowing occasional bubbles.
The drive reminded me of my Grandma's Marathon runs (the route is on the way to Lutsen). I could literally feel the crowd cheering for me as I was on "lemon drop hill"... until suddenly I realized... I'm not running. I'm driving. Oh, and I'm in no shape for running and am 7 lbs heavier. But, at the very least maybe that flashback will get me excited to start running again. It's so surreal to me that running was such a huge part of my life 3 years ago and yet as time passes it seems like that was a different woman. In fact, the only running Sam has seen me do is on command when he's in back-seat driver mode in the stroller: "faster, MOM!"
Here's me 6 years ago running Grandma's (my favorite marathon of the 5 I've done). The pic below that is me with my brother (not the one I visited this wknd) crossing the finish line together.
Speaking of Grandma's, it was just this past weekend. Congrats to all the runners, including my sister-in-law! WAY TO GO!
Back to our visit... we stayed right off the water thanks to my brother and sister-and-law letting us crash with them (thanks guys!). The place was perfect for Sam because he LOVES throwing rocks into lakes. He could do it all day. I even caught him dreaming about rocks last night, yelling out "THAT'S MY ROCK!" in his sleep. He must have been dreaming about his arguments with his cousin - he wanted to throw the rocks while she wanted to keep the "pretty" rocks.
It wasn't exactly a relaxing break since I was dealing with 2 small children on my own (though my brother & SIL helped me out) and my Sydney decided that would be a great time to cut 2 teeth and work on 2 more - but it was a great opportunity to see my brother & his family and revisit the north shore, which I hadn't been to in years. Below are some picture highlights.
Here Sam is saying, "Don't take my picture!" (literally)My brother and his family on the covered walking bridge:Cute nieces & nephew, don't ya think!Me & Sam (with his best "cheese!" face on):Sam with his uncle, aunt and cousins skipping rocks on the beach:
Sydney hanging out on top of the cliff with Mom while we wait for the gang to come back (we couldn't climb down there safely with the baby):Sam and his uncle:
Ready for retirement:
Sam also loved riding down this Alpine Slide at Lutsen mountain with his uncle (I was watching Sydney). I couldn't believe this place doesn't make people wear helmets and you only have to be 2 to ride (with an adult). Apparently people can fall off because occasionally prairie dogs will try to cross the track. A whole new kind of road kill I guess. But you'll be happy to know that no 2 year olds or prairie dogs were injured in Sam's adventure. (This is not Sam below.)