We haven't taken a family vacation since our New England trip in the Fall of '07, so it was high time to get out and have the boys experience something new... enter Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks! I am still sorting through the 458 photos (woo hoo for folder sorting!) and will post a few from each day in a new post.
Day one of course begins with the drive up... somewhat scenic and certainly "I Spy" game worthy, the drive was good. Em and Ro were pretty patient and excited and I also was able to get some crocheting done.
We arrived in a hailstorm! For a family from the desert city of Los Angeles, this was automatically cool and exciting! After checking in at the Montecito Sequoia Lodge, we went to explore the area. (First pic is the view from our room!)
Em and Ro were full of energy and ready to explore! We went down to the lake and played on the canoes, plunked stones in the water, stacked pine cones... all the usual fun kid stuff. When our clothes were dirty enough from exploring, we went in to prepare for dinner.
Now, I have to tell you this right off the bat... finding the Montecito Sequoia Lodge as a place to stay (and booking it!) was one of THE smartest things we did to prepare for this trip! The only thing I can come close to comparing it to, would be the resort in the Dirty Dancing movie... food and activities for the whole family are included for the duration of your stay. Hot tea and hot chocolate whenever you want! (Coffee too... but I don't drink that.) 3 hot meals each day and drinks/snacks available 24/7-- perfect for families! Okay, enough about that for now...
We came up to the room, cleaned up for dinner and headed down to the lodge. From the wraparound deck, we spotted several mule deers around the resort and took one more quick walk before eating. The telescopes for nighttime star gazing had been taken in prior to the storm, but we didn't need to look up for amazing views... just look left and right and right down at our feet.
After dinner, we played games around the fireplace and the turned in early to prepare for the next day. The boys would have none of this "going-to-bed" nonsense and I think we kept half the guests awake for quite a bit! Finally, sleeptime!!