December 29, 2016

Green and bright

Perfectly fitting for the year we've had, this Christmas, we went to the woods.

It wasn't exactly roughing it - we had a cabin, with a kitchen and a bathroom and even a television with more channels than at home. But it was perfect. Such a gorgeous park - I thought out loud as we pulled into the park, this was the best decision, for sure.

Noah and I explored a bit on Christmas Eve, went down to the lake to play on the playground and just take in the incredible scenery. After dinner at the cabin, we made drove to the airport and picked up Matt - his father, my ex-husband, the man who was in town to spend the holiday with us.

It was a nice drive back to the cabin - Noah asleep in the backseat, and we talked, not about anything in particular, but it felt friendly. When we got back, we tucked Noah in, laid out the presents, and headed to bed - him on the living room futon, me and Noah each on a twin bed in the bedroom.

In the morning, we opened gifts - small, but meaningful ones, not anything extravagant or expensive. Noah was happiest to receive the toy cash register he'd asked Santa for, as well as his ranger's hat and binoculars.

We did a two-mile hike through the woods, noticing all kinds of plants and animals. At the half-way point, there was a little picnic table where we stopped for a snack. After the hike, we headed to the ranger station to rent kayaks - he was out for lunch, so we walked on a boardwalk on the lake to pass the 20 minutes or so. Then, we got in our boats.

I was nervous. The last time I was in a kayak like this ... I was under 200 pounds, I was in California, everything was completely different. I was so worried I wouldn't be able to do it.

And then I did it. With Noah up front to be the lookout, we paddled across much of the lake - including a cypress grove, where we turned back to make sure we were back on the beach by sunset.

We turned in the boats and life jackets, went back to the cabin for dinner, then walked around the cabin area, just looking at millions and millions of stars.

It was an incredible day, that's just all there is. When I tucked Noah in, I cried a little, and gave him a big hug: thank you, for the best holiday I've had in a very, very long time.

No comments: