The original plan for the day was to take Jackson bowling. Jesse made an appointment to give blood and I didn't think bowling would be very fun with the trio, so I nixed that idea. A friend messaged me that morning asking us if we wanted to join her at Jetton Park, which is on Lake Norman. I've heard great things about the park but I've always been reluctant to take the trio to a beach with open water by myself. It had always been a bit of a drive, but now it only takes 20 minutes with the new interstate. Jesse loaded the kids in the van before he left, meanwhile I tossed sand toys and snacks in a bag.
The park was so scenic. We met at the playground, which was not at all toddler friendly. I didn't even take any pictures or talk to my friends because I was trying to keep James and Maddie from plummeting off playground equipment. (Amelia is surprisingly strong and agile!)
After fifteen minutes on the playground, we all headed to the beach. The other moms drove there. I despise loading and unloading the kids when I can just walk somewhere. The trails were so shady and peaceful.
I suspected there would be a good deal of walking so I wore Maddie in the Ergo. I haven't worn her since Jesse's been home for the summer. I forgot how sweet, yet distracting she can be while walking.
The beach was lovely--shady, relaxing, and fairly deserted. Us moms threw all the toys in a pile and the kids shared freely.
The kids were so content playing in the sand, I was secretly hoping they wouldn't notice the water. Jackson was the first to realize he could play in the lake. He buried, dug up, and washed all his superheroes.
Much to my surprise, Maddie was the next to discover the joys of the shore. For someone who notoriously hates water, she had no qualms about wading in the water.
James was so excited the entire morning. Once in the water, he walked, completely sat down, and got on his hands and knees to pick up sea shells. He kept bringing me miscellaneous objects.
It was cute, until he showed me the dead fish.
Amelia was too much of a diva to enjoy the water. I painted Amelia's toenails yesterday. She picked out strappy sandals to wear this morning and she would not let me take them off at the lake. She walked along the shore for a bit, but was only mildly amused.
I was so relaxed and the kids were so busy, we stayed long after my friend left. Seriously, who would want to leave this?
The kids rehydrated and ate a light lunch of yogurt and peanut butter crackers. I rinsed the sand off everyone before we began our trek back to the van.
The return walk to the van was far less enjoyable than the walk to the lake. The next time I go to this park I'll skip the playground altogether, park at the beach, and bring bathing suits and a change of clothes for the kids. You live and learn.