As of Thursday, the kids are out of school. With both drivers in the family working, keeping up with taxi duties is challenging this summer, as is keeping my 15-year-old and 13-year-old from getting too bored too quickly. It seems like we’re always going separate ways. And of course there is the “nose in the iPhone syndrome” that is very popular in my house, particularly on the couches.
I got an idea from reading a summer activity guide – we will visit a new park every week. I don’t have many plans beyond that, but there might be picnic lunches, there might be hiking, we might need towels. There is definitely a notebook to keep track of whatever the person in charge of the notebook that day wants to keep track of.
Today we kicked it off with a close one – Lake Isabella Park. It’s a part of the impressive Hamilton County Park system and while we don’t live in Hamilton County, they let us use the park anyway.
I last visited Lake Isabella sometime in the 70s. My oldest brother used to have quite a fishing habit and sometimes my mom would pick them up after a day there.
My guess is that there have been upgrades to the facilities since then, but it’s still primarily a fishing location. Located on 28 acres, there is a stocked lake with a pier and a boathouse, several picnic shelters, and a playground. Above is a nice shot of a garbage can with the kids trying to hurt themselves. It was taken from the end of the pier looking in.
We walked around the park, finding a nice bird blind but no birds. We found the spot where canoes can put into the Little Miami River, which borders the park, so we walked down to the river. Two of us walked in the river. One of us found a snake. Another was wearing basketball shoes which cannot be dampened and wandered off to find a path in the trees.
After I stood in the river for while, we headed back, stopping at the playground full of kids celebrating the end of their Little League season. A bossy 6 year old kicked my 13 year old off a twirly piece of playground equipment, much to my amusement.
All around, it was a pretty park, but limited in its offering beyond fishing. But the four of us enjoyed it for the couple of hours we were there.
I’m very aware of how the fleeting these days of wholeness are. This is what I want to do with my one wild and precious life.
And I swung from monkey bars.