I kept it a surprise from the children until two days before we left. Nick and Alex had figured out we were going somewhere they just didn't know where, but the other children were completely surprised and so excited!!
We loaded up Monday morning and headed out about 11:30 after dropping off the dog at the doggie hotel. We drove up to Hot Springs and went out to lunch,swung by Walmart for some groceries, and arrived at Lake Catherine just in time to check in.
We like Lake Catherine so much because the cabins are very affordable and have everything you need except food and personal items. Each cabin has a picnic table, a grill and a dock. The park roads are paved which is great for bike riding. They have a nice little play area, a swim beach, and a nature cabin to stop in and visit. Plus they do free educational programs, and there is plenty of wildlife to view.
We had a great time fishing on and off the boat. Several fish we caught and Alex even cleaned two of his fish to eat, the others were too small and got thrown back or were caught on our last day. Alex even caught a turtle!
|Anthony doesn't like to fish but he was trying to catch minnows with the net|
We went on a bike ride at least once every day sometimes twice a day. Lily rode her bike with us a few times and I was really impressed that she could make it that far on her little bike with training wheels. A couple of times she rode in the chariot with Emelia.
During our rides we visited the playground.
The children did lots of swimming. The second day we were there I had just gotten 5 of them onto the beach (Art and Nick were on the boat) and opened my chair and it started to rain just a little. I told them keep swimming as long as it didn't lightning they were getting wet anyway. A few minutes later though the sky opened up and it started raining so hard you couldn't even see. They got out and we went to the van until it lightened up a bit then they went back in and I stood under the pavilion and watched them swim in the rain. After about an hour it quit.
|swimming in the rain|
|Christian made an Egyptian pyramid in the sand|
The next day it was raining again, even harder. So we decided to go to Mid America Science Museum. Our passes do not expire until December so it didn't cost us anything. The museum is always fun. There were some people there but not as many as when we went over the summer.
We got to go to the Nature Cabin on Thursday. We went to a program about turtles and another one that the children got to make snakeskin bookmarks. They loved the nature cabin and the craft that they made.
Every day the children enjoyed feeding the ducks. We also were visited by plenty of geese and had a few raccoons get into our boat and eat the stink bait that was in the tackle boxes.
|Anthony took this photo|
|He also took this one|
|Alex took the baby duck photo|
I took a few group pictures of the children
I had Nick take one of Art and I so I would be in at least one photo!
Friday we loaded up and headed home. We had a really great time but I am always glad to be back in my own bed!