Seneca Lake

The weekend after Charlie's birthday we headed to Seneca Lake in Geneva, New York.  Kelly and the Goforths had a wedding for a family friend so they were renting a house with Greg's dad and Sandy and his sister and her family since it's about an hour from Rochester.  Since they were making a long weekend out of it and had plenty of space, we decided to tag along.  Unfortunately, Jason can't really ditch work for more than a day or so during the fall (prime aerating season!), so the boys and I traveled there with my parents.

We spent a long 12 hours in the car that Thursday, but the boys really did great!!  We stopped in Erie, PA and grabbed Steak N Shake about 2 minutes from our hotel.  The boys were happy to be out of the car; when we went back out to the parking lot, poor Charlie was saying "no bye bye, no bye bye" but our drive was so short that he realized quickly we were finished with the car for the day.

The next day we had about 3.5 hours to drive and they were not quite as easy as the day before.  Within about 15 minutes Jack was asking if we were in New York or at the lake yet.  They weren't quite thrilled with more time in the car.

BUT we made it!!  The house was great - kudos to Kelly for doing all the research and planning.  We were right on the lake, with a dock and everything, and the house had 6 bedrooms along a loooooong hallway that the kids enjoyed running up and down, especially when we first got there and they had energy to burn.  There was another large bedroom upstairs, so we had plenty of space for the 4 couples, me and 5 kids.  I wish I had taken more pictures of the house, but you can see it here.

Friday we all arrived at different times, so we mostly just got settled.  Uncle Greg borrowed a boat from a friend, so it was quite exciting to watch for him to arrive via water.  Grandpa had flashlights for all the little ones so we could send him signals in case he didn't see us (the sun was just starting to go down).  I have never seen 5 kids eat dinner so quickly as they did that night so they could get back outside to watch for Uncle Greg (and Daddy, for Parker).  It was cute.

That night we celebrated Parker's birthday a little early (it was yesterday) since most of us wouldn't be seeing her on her birthday.  We sang happy birthday, ate cake and she opened gifts.

Jack and Clare, Parker's cousin, who is about 7 months older than him, really hit it off.  They have met a handful of times before and each time they play together more and more.  They had fun playing hide & seek, running around, watching TV together and just having fun...
Saturday morning Jack and Grandpa sneaked some fishing in and caught a fish!
Saturday afternoon the Goforth clan went to the wedding so we 5 Langs checked out Watkins Glen State Park, which was about 15 minutes away.  It was really cool - a big waterfall cascading all around through lots of rocks.  We didn't hike the whole thing because, well, let's face it, eventually one or both of the boys was going to need to carried and we weren't up for that.  But the parts we saw were very pretty.  Jack especially liked the part where the path went behind the waterfall - he went back and forth several times to check it out.

That night the Goforths went to the wedding reception so my mom, dad and I were in charge of all the kiddos.  We hung out outside for awhile (in jackets, it was chilly that day!!).
 Then we gave 4 out of 5 kids a bath.  Turns out the only tub at the house didn't have a working stopper, so after two rounds of two kids with Mom holding the plug down while I did the bathing, we ran out of energy.  Poor Catie went dirty for the night.
Then we played with Parker's new dice game (side note: we have this game too and it is SO fun for toddlers through early preschoolers).  It's basically a big colored die and when you roll it you pick a card of that color.  The cards are themed so you either make a certain animal sound, do some action, find something of a certain color, etc.  Here's a clip of them "doing a silly dance:"
Sunday we took advantage of the nicer weather (the sun was out!!) and spent most of the day outside.  Grandpa and Jack caught lots of fish and Clare got in on the action too!  The kids enjoyed playing in the docked boat, some kayaks and just throwing rocks into the water.

Then we had a picnic lunch.

After lunch we took a boat ride.  Jack, Clare and Parker loved it, especially when they got splashed and pretended to fall down.

Charlie on the other hand dozed off within about 5 minutes of us pushing off.  It was so funny watching him try to fight it...
I love this video:
After the boat ride Kelly, Mom, Gennie and I headed out to explore a few wineries.  The Finger Lakes area is known for its wineries and there were many, many to choose from within a short distance from our house.  We had a nice time.
That night was our final night there, so we made use of the great fire pit (it had been used each of the previous nights too, but not by the kids and not by me because my kids are EARLY risers and I was the solo parent there to get up with them).  Kelly and Greg bought some giant marshmellows so we roasted those, which the kids loved.

At the end of the night, Papa G (Greg's dad) lit a few sky lanterns which were very cool!!

Monday it was time to part ways.  The boys and I took the easy way home and flew instead of doing the long drive again.  They both did great on the flights.  Our layover in Chicago was a bit stressful for Mommy (turns out 4- and 2-year olds don't quite understand just how close I want them to stay to Mommy in a bustling airport).

All in all our trip was fabulous!  It was so great (as always) to see Kelly, Greg and Parker and Greg's family.  We always have so much fun, and watching the kids hang out as they get older is priceless.  Hopefully we can get another trip planned to get these kiddos together again soon!

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