Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Break in Minocqua!

Setting off on our adventure with the family dog!
One of the great thing about our kids is that they don't actually know that going on Spring Break usually means flying somewhere warm....especially when you've had one of the coldest Wisconsin winters since the 1800's. So while the rest of Wisconsin was headed south, we actually went five hours north to Minocqua, where we rented a cabin for a week. But even we were a little surprised when it snowed 15 inches on the second day! Our car got stuck....and the resort owner's snow plow even got stuck trying to dig us out! Hilarious.
The kids had a blast. I could not get over how much all three of them loved the sauna. By the end of the week, Madeline and John (yes, John! Two-year-old John!) were running the 300 feet to the sauna barefoot! Once we were settled and warm inside, all three of them would take turns saying earnestly, "Ah, I just loooove the sauna," in content voices as their cheeks got pinker and pinker. I guess they really do have some serious Scandinavian roots.
Running to the sauna
We had roaring fires started by breakfast-time, and we'd feed it with logs all day long. I finished four books, and we loved watching the classic old Winnie the Pooh movie together at night.
Because it was Minocqua's low season, most of the restaurants in town were closed. That suited us just fine....we went grocery shopping and cooked almost all our meals at home. Each kid had their own bedroom in our cabin, but Madeline and Charlie begged to sleep together every night -- it was fun listening to them giggle together through the wall before they would drift off. We also discovered a "water park" in town with a couple of swimming pools, a giant hot tub and a splash area with fountains and slides -- we went two of our six days. Rob, Madeline and Charlie went back to the adjoining arcade while John napped and won 522 tickets!
We also dyed Easter eggs, built a snowman, and Rob went ice fishing! And we all had fun playing a vintage pinball machine for ten cents in the recently-built community center.

But the absolute highlight of the trip was that the Maple sap started to run our last day of vacation. Jenny took the kids around the grounds and showed them how to tap a tree, let them taste the collected sap, and taught them how to make Maple Syrup!
On our last day, Madeline asked when we could come back. And at bedtime our first night home, John hollered from his crib, "Great vacation!!!! Spring Break!!!"

And it really was!

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