Friday, July 6, 2012

Mosquitos, Ticks, and Deer Flies, Oh My!

We got back yesterday from a nice, long trip (5 nights) to my parent's cabin near Ely. Waaay up north! We had incredible weather and awful bugs. I don't remember having so many hot days in a row on a trip to the cabin, but I didn't complain! Now that we're in the cities again with monster heat I miss being able to jump in the lake whenever I please.

Lake Ojibway off the cabin's dock. Taken right before my last swim of the day around 9:30. We just had to swim before bed because it was just so hot!
The girls had fun but there will be toddler meltdowns anywhere we go. They did NOT appreciate the mosquitos, deer flies, and horse flies. I only picked off a couple ticks- one was crawling on me in the middle of the night. The girls were tentative around the water (which I appreciate!) My parents shoreline is not ideal for toddlers because of big rocks and deep water so we would take the motor boat to a public beach/landing just a couple minutes away. The girls waded to their waist- a record- and even "swam" on their bellies. They definitely like to do things like that on their own. They would freak out if we wanted to hold them in the water. No trust!?!?! Oh well.
Sofia so serious! (can you make out all her bits on her face/neck?)
Madeline gazing at the lake
The girls liked pointing out loons and even spotted a "goose"flying right over us before I did while on our dock. (The goose ended up being a bald eagle- hehe.) The least fun part of the trip besides the bugs was trying to get the girls to nap and sleep at night. They just like to play and they get so wound up. If we leave them alone while they should be falling asleep, they will no doubt climb out of the pack and plays and get into things. One time, I went in and Sofia and Josie were sleeping but Madeline had gotten into my cosmetics case and drew eye liner all over her face. Arg!
At the public beach/landing. 

Odin spends the whole time "fishing" (with no luck) while at the public beach.

Madeline wouldn't nap so I took her on a kayak ride. She didn't win her battle against sleep (but why the kayak and not the crib!?)

L to R Madeline, Sofia, and Josie.

They can torment Odin at the cabin too!

Sofia throwing sticks in the water (one of the favorite activities of the trip)

Cute pic of Madeline

I just love it up at the cabin. Our lake is only one lake outside the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. It is so beautiful and peaceful. Even with toddlers! I'm not sure if we'll get up there again this summer but we'll see. On our way back we first stopped in Ely to watch the 4th of July parade. Wow, they were waaaay too generous throwing out candy! After that, we stopped at the Island Lake Cabin (Dan's parents) to see some family on the 4th before heading back to the cities. The cousins had fun with each other but we didn't have enough time!

Here's a cool loon video my mom took one of the mornings. The girls love watching this video- they break out in hysterics!

Ha! You want us to smile? We think not!! (l to r Josie, Madeline, and Sofia)
Happy to be at the parade!
Sofia taking her time (doesn't realize there's candy in her near future?)
A couple weeks ago, all of my aunts and uncles from out east came to Minnesota for my second cousin's wedding. We celebrated as well at a picnic for their wedding and we had my aunt and uncles over for a casual dinner at our house. Most of them had never met the girls so it was fun for them to finally meet them! The girls were shy at first of course, but they had a great time. 

I have to add a side story. After the picnic and before we were having people over to our house, we tried to get the girls to nap- of course- but they were playing in their cribs instead. They ALL had their diapers off- of course- but Josie had pooped in her crib! It was smeared everywhere including her body, blankie and some of her dogs! She was crying because she obviously didn't like it. This was 10 minutes before we were expecting guests!! Such a typical toddler story! The other two had accidents so needless to say everyone was in the bath. Luckily, the guests were a little late (thank you!!) so we were ready even with the drama.
Family get together!
One last tidbit. We converted the cribs to toddler beds finally! They were getting out of their cribs constantly so we bit the bullet. It has not been an easy transition. The girls are all having way too much fun when they should be sleeping! Last night, for example, we put them down at 8:15 and they weren't asleep until close to 10. They just goof around! We made it a safe room and child proofed the door knobs (which they promptly figured out anyway) and ended up putting baby gates to further child proof the door. They are crazy! The fun thing is that Dan set up a video camera to see what they did that first night we converted. Sadly, we can't find the cord to upload the videos to the computer so I can't post anything yet. Let's just say they were having pillow fights, bouncing on each others' beds, and were just plain hyper. When we finally upload the video I'll try to post something. 

Madeline sleeping during nap. Makes me laugh!
After a failed nap (too much fun to play instead!), two fell asleep while I was packing for the cabin. 

Good job if you made it through the whole post... this wasn't a short one! Hope you all have a great weekend!


  1. Beautiful lake!!! Really looks so peaceful! I am curious what "hot" is up there? I bet I couldn't even swim in that water I would think it is too cold!

  2. So "hot" in Ely to me was 85 to close to 90. The hot part about it is that the cabin itself has very little air flow, no fans etc. Being outside was comfortable enough. The water was absolutely perfect...not sure what non-Minnesotans would think. It was still cold enough to be a little bit of a shock but pretty easy to get used to. (I grew up swimming in Lake Superior, where it takes a lot more getting used to!)
    Hot here in the twin cities is more of a typical hot. Right now it's 96 but with the humidity "feels like" 106. Too hot for this Duluthian! Where are you from?

  3. Ok, that is actually warmer than I would have expected! I have never been that far north before! I live in North Georgia, and hour north of Atlanta. I went to a lake in New Hampshire once in July and I couldn't get in the water because it felt like ice to me! My parents have a lake house here in Georgia, and it was 107 this weekend (actual temperature- but high 90s is more normal, it was a very hot weekend!) The water in the lake always feels like a bath tub by July which is pretty gross! And our lake is not nearly as pretty as yours!!!

  4. I love the picture of them tickling your dog's nose with the pine needles. Ha! What a patient puppy!