Hats, Corn, and one Black Swan

As part of our Fall Color trip to Michigan, my sweet Aunt and Uncle took us all to a bird sanctuary!

We got up in the morning and I checked the weather – low of 40, high 62 – okay, 62 – I got this! Grabbed everyone a jacket, put the mittens in a bag and out the door.

Part one – donuts and cider (really, really yummy donuts) and fresh Michigan apple cider

Part two – it’s cold – okay so that 62 isn’t happening until mid-day and it’s still morning and I’ve got these Florida kids outside – no one grabbed the mitten bag – and it’s shady and there’s a nice breeze and all my babies are cold. Good thing my Aunt is the poster woman for preparedness! She gets in her trunk and pulls out a bag of random mittens, sweaters, scarfs, and some ear-cover-headband thing (I am sure this has a real name – but we are Florida people and I don’t know what it’s called!)

Part three – As part of the Bird Sanctuary experience my Aunt bought the kids all a bucket of corn to feed the “water fowl” ….. there were many ducks, geese, and swan and we even got some of the Geese to eat the corn right out of our hands! (It was all fun and games until the 2 year old dropped his bucket of corn!)

Part Four – We saw lots of birds and the kids absolutely enjoyed themselves! My favorite bird was the Black Swan which I had never seen before! 

It was a fantastic day! We are so thankful for the opportunity to spend the day out seeing the birds! By the time we left it was warming up nicely and the kids spent the day playing outside in the crisp Michigan Fall air!

Travel Party of 10

We’ve been kind of random lately, so when I told my husband I wanted to go to Michigan during “Peak Color” and there was also an Oils Retreat the same weekend in North Ohio (you know two birds, one stone) …… He wasn’t shocked and even said “yes”! Even though he knew it meant spending an extra big ole’ chunk of money and driving 18 hours in a van with eight kids (including one newborn, and a 2 and 4 year old!) – I mean this is the kind of stuff nightmares are made of right?

We aren’t there yet …. We have 3.5 hours to go …. But I have to say – it’s been pretty good! (Dear Lord, please don’t let me jinx it!) – The baby still sleeps often and most of the day and her every 4 hour feeding schedule also coincides perfectly with our 4 hour gas tank, our 4 year old’s 4 hour bathroom break, and means we are stopping enough to stretch legs and burn off energy! Traveling during the day has been fun as we’ve gotten to see and point out cotton fields full of cotton, and watch as the color builds the further North we travel.

The day before we left – I handed each kid an empty gift bag and made them each responsible for their own car entertainment (we didn’t even put in a DVD player (Gasp!!) but both secretly decided if it got crazy – we’d find a Wal-Mart and rectify that problem immediately!) I don’t even know what they brought …. But between their bags and the Peace and Calming going through our vents ….. It’s working! Thank you Jesus!