Summer Retreat with the Grands

On a hot August morning Mike and I loaded our four youngest grandchildren for a brief getaway, we were missing our oldest grandson, Tyler, but he is a working man.  Our plans were to go “camping”, not the cot in a tent kind of camping but the nice bed in a 5th wheel kind.  I mention that not to boast but to explain we are pretty spoiled, I really like electricity, air-conditioning, hot showers, and all the normal comforts, my grands enjoy those things too.

We had a two-hour drive to reach our destination, Fin and Feather Lodge on Tenkiller Lake.  The kids were good travelers, they were armed with Ipads and headphones.   I was quick to decide whoever invented headphones was brilliant and most certainly should have received a Nobel peace prize.

Upon arriving at the Fin our first stop was Soda Steve’s, the fun restaurant with delicious burgers and more.  We found a big table and savored and assortment of choices, the homemade onion rings were a big hit.  After lunch the little ones delighted in washing their hands, Soda Steve’s made that a fun experience.IMG_2215_edited-1 A great big bath tub instead of a sink is so much better.

Fin and Feather offers many choices for entertainment.  The three youngest, Kinsey, Grace and Gabriel chose the Fin’s swimming pool for their first activity.  They have a nice pool, a wading pool and a bubbly hot tub.

IMG_2219_edited-1     IMG_2224_edited-1       IMG_2221_edited-1  All three love the water, I am not quite ready to let little Gabe loose in a deep pool without a life jacket, although he wants to be free.

Colton had packed his fishing pole and a tackle box filled with all things “fishing”.  He was eager to throw a line in the pond so he chose to be a fisherman before swimming.DSC_0674_edited-1  Since Colton is now a teenager we give him more freedom, he is a great kid growing into a fine young man.

The Fin has a building set up as an arcade. DSC_0642_edited-2 The perimeter of the room has games of all kinds and the center of the room is a miniature golf course.  The games were probably not the most current but the kids all enjoyed them.  There were simple games that you just put a quarter in and out popped a ball, others you droveDSC_0606_edited-1   DSC_0601_edited-1

and some that required two great minds.DSC_0610_edited-1 .  Colton and Grandad played air hockey  DSC_0597_edited-1 All four tried the miniature golf course.  DSC_0617_edited-1    DSC_0616_edited-1  DSC_0631_edited-1   DSC_0639_edited-1   DSC_0629_edited-1

The ping-pong table was also a favorite.   An amazing August rainstorm trapped us in the arcade for a while but none of us really cared.  Mike and I loved watching a Oklahoma August rain  and were beyond grateful for the 20 degree drop in temperature that came with it.

The Fin has a very nice gift shop with a large selection, making it hard for 5, 6 and 9 year olds to choose.  Hard but not impossible,  they were up to the task.  They eventually made time to climb and slide on the playground, although we had to towel dry the equipment. This trip was not the kids first time to be monkeys on the Fin playground but the first to have it all to themselves.

As evening drew nearer the plan was group fishing.  going fishing  This was definitely more Mike’s department, which was totally ok.  I got to just watch and enjoy with the camera at the ready. I was amazed at the girl’s interest and their willingness to touch a worm. DSC_0667_edited-1          DSC_0679_edited-1

Both girls were patient, a necessary trait for fishing, but one I think my sweet girls are still learning.  One trait they share is a special cousin bond, makes my heart smile.DSC_0672_edited-1  Gabriel had a little trouble staying interested in the fishing but found a kitty to play with.  DSC_0678_edited-1 Little boys always find something to make them smile.  Colton took his fishing pretty seriously, he chose a spot with some quiet solitude to throw his fishing line.  Sadly, no fish were actually caught, only some moss.

I planned for us to watch a family friendly movie, Disney’s Parent Trap.  We rented it at the local video store because our copy is an outdated VHS, but unfortunately the DVD was so scratched it was unwatchable.  We eventually settled for another movie we had with us, I had grabbed and oldie but a goodie, Secondhand Lions.  The trailer was cozy with all six of us but when you are with people you love cozy can be nice.  The girls had matching nightgowns, this was little Grace’s idea.  She and I had purchased them a few days before our Fin trip, she wanted to surprise Kinsey with “twinsey” pjs.DSC_0689_edited-1  The new gowns came with matching outfits for their American dolls.  Luckily their new stuffed animals, purchased in the Fin Gift Shop, were happy to join in the “twinsey” fun.

Eventually everyone fell asleep, it was late enough that all four slept in the next morning. After muffins for breakfast we spent our second morning  in the pool.  We were suppose to be home in early afternoon so lunch was a little fast and crazy.  Before we reloaded for our return drive we snapped a group shot DSC_0694_edited-1

As we drove home I asked each grandchild what was their favorite thing on our short retreat.  Colton was very quick to say, “fishing”, Kinsey said “arcade”, Gabriel answered  “I need to think about it” and Grace said “spending time with Nana and Grandad”.  Mike and I are very blessed grandparents and we know it.  Time spent with our grands is special, I love making memories with them.






About Judy

I have been married to my bestfriend for 38 years. I am blessed to be surrounded by my family: two daughters and a son. I have five grandchildren who light up my life.
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