"The Lake"

Growing up, my most vivid and connected memories are from my family's stays at Lake Erie. EVERY summer we would head up to Mitiwanga Beach (before that it was Old Homestead) for 2 weeks. The whole family would be there, some times in and out because of traveling and work, but I have such amazing memories of my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents from these experiences. This is where I formed those family relationships that I probably wouldn't have otherwise. So even as I type this, I get this tightening in my stomach and an overwhelming sense of nostalgia. This is for all you Medvedeffs out there. :)
The house(s) we stayed in we on the top of a hill that overlooked the lake and its beaches (Now I know that Lake Erie is FAR from paradise, but I'll tell you what, to us it sure seemed like it!) A long sidewalk went up the side of the hill to take us down to the pier and beach. All of us cousins (there are 8 total) would be ready to head to the beach first thing in the morning, but had to settle for sitting on the bench and watching the lake until the grownups had their coffee and woke up. My cousin Megan and I use to lay out at the beach and read for hours on end until we were so crispy red they had to drag us in. We'd walk up the hill Uncle Willie style and stop for breaks if we were walking with grandma (it was steep). In the water we had the JUMBO float that held about all of us. We played categories jumping off of the pier. Katie taught us all "elvis prestley singing a cheer!" and Cass always had a new song that we' d learn and sing for the week. We tanned in "Scandanavia". I can remember Chelsea and Nick coming up when Chelsea was still really young and we would walk her around in the water. Grandpa sometimes used soap to bathe in the lake, and someone(s) snored so loud it shook the whole house. Thunderstorms were a highlight because of the beautiful light display over the panoramic lakeview. We would play catch in the front "yard" (or was it the back? :) ), and there was one time I threw it right at Alex' mouth and he bit through his tongue. Uncle Mark always brought the oldies tapes we sing and dance to, and then of course his stories or Captain Philbo and Captain Black. We thought for sure the house was haunted by those characters and as we got older, the 8 cousins of Fate emmerged complete with old creepy letters pulled out of the wall crevices and spooky oracles down by the Keywadin. We played Horse down at the park and had Gin tournaments with winners plaques. You could barely see the Magnum's outline from the hill, and we'd wait until that one day we got to visit it each year. Aunt Kathie would take us to the Outlets and putt-putting. We checked out Mystery Hill and jetskiied one year! Grandpa always hid candybars in the freezer, and if you woke up early, you were lucky enough to share hot chocolate with grandma out on the bench and help with the crossword puzzle. Uncle Mark would take us out fishing on his boat (we won't talk about the motor, Bevan) :) I even have memories and mental images of my other grandparents visiting once a summer and us taking them for fish over in MarbleHead.
ANYWAYS... as you can tell there are some pretty great stories from those summers. I always want to head for the lake during the summer, so on my last day before going back to teach summer literacy camp, I packed up Kailyn and a picnic and took the long way(out 18) to our little paradise.

Kailyn sitting on the bench (backwards )- our pier in the background- they put big old rocks around it now- so no more jumping- not even if we stay behind the line . She wanted to crawl down and jump right in!She loved the water and just kep pointing at it.
After our stop at Mitiwanga, we headed over to the public beach- Nickelplate for KB's first Lake Erie swim. And of course, no visit is complete without multiple trips to The Pied Piper! (just make sure there is not a tornado coming down Main St. if you are ordering the #4 Flurry!)

These are the kinds of memories that I hope I can help create for Kailyn, because these really mean the world to me.

major catch up...I'll keep it semi-brief

It's been WAAAAY too long, I know...but I've been so busy playing! Now it's back to school for me...Here is an update of our last month and half.She's got an attitude sometimes...

Playing with crayons in the back yardSwim lessons! I know it's dark (since we have to settle for inside lessons in Ohio) but I like the outlined shadows.

More swimming at the park

Kailyn's not too happy, but her Nan and Pop sure loved visiting her and Natalie.First stepsHelping make play dough and then play with it (she's actully not eating it in this picture! )Mom needs to sweep the rug!
Climbing in a basket-which she always does....she climbs into and onto EVERYTHING! :)Helping in my classroom- she went out a few times with me and just played played played with all my stuff. It gave me special pictures in my mind so when I'm there all day, I can think back to our special days.
And of course, no summer is complete without a trip to the Zoo and Szaleys!