Deer sightings are common in my mom and dad’s neighborhood – we saw a doe with her three fawns our first day in La Pine and since then Juliette had been constantly asking “baby deer?  baby deer?  baby deeeeer?  where arrrrrrre youuuuuu?”.  On Wednesday my mom and I strapped Jules into the stroller and set out on a deer hunt.  Just as we were about to call it a bust and head back to the house, we spotted another doe with a couple of fawns.  The great outdoors for the win!

20150722 la pine1 sm

We passed the afternoon at Elk Lake, bobbing in the calm, cool water.

20150722 elk lake2 sm

20150722 elk lake1 sm

Shane couldn’t resist the paddle boards for rent at the dock and rowed over to pick up Jules.  I had my doubts about how this would go down – she isn’t one to sit still for more than about 15 seconds at a time.  But she was amazing, perching so perfectly on the front of the board for half an hour while she and her dad toured the lake.

20150722 elk lake3 sm

20150722 elk lake4 sm

20150722 elk lake5 sm

I hopped on for a quick spin, a little nervous when I realized I didn’t have a dry change of clothes with me, but I managed a short (wobbly) trip to the buoy and back.

20150722 elk lake6 sm

20150722 elk lake7 sm

20150722 elk lake8 sm

We ate dinner on the patio of the lodge while Juliette ran circles around our table – all that sitting still had her wired!

20150722 elk lake9 sm

20150722 elk lake10 sm

20150722 elk lake11 sm

20150722 elk lake12 sm

We spent Thursday morning hunting deer and jogging down the wide-open dirt roads.  What a relief to not have to get after this girl to stay on the sidewalk and watch out for cars!

20150723 la pine1 sm

Juliette helped Grandpa with some watering, washed some rocks, scooped some dirt.  This is the stuff of a toddler’s dreams…

20150723 la pine2 sm

20150723 la pine3 sm

20150723 la pine4 sm

Another day meant another lake – after naptime, we hauled my dad’s boat up to East Lake for a spin.  We motored out to the middle of the lake and just let ourselves drift, as Juliette was eager to take the wheel.

20150723 east lake3 sm

20150723 east lake1 sm
20150723 east lake2 sm

Hey, Gilligan!

20150723 east lake4 sm

20150723 east lake5 sm

20150723 east lake7 sm

20150723 east lake8 sm

Juliette eventually let me sit in the driver’s seat and I put the pedal to the metal.  I want a boat.

20150723 east lake6 sm

We spent the rest of the day just hanging out on the back porch – Juliette cozied up with her new best buddy, Bernie, then rummaged around in the tool shed and passed a good 20 minutes sweeping the sidewalk.  It felt so good to spend the bulk of our waking hours outdoors every day, enjoying the simplest of pleasures.

20150723 la pine6 sm

20150723 la pine5 sm

20150723 la pine7 sm

We loaded up our car on Friday morning and said good-bye to La Pine after one last stroll through the woods.  I miss this place already.

20150724 la pine1 sm

20150724 la pine2 sm

Thanks so much, Mom and Dad, for a perfect week!

20150724 la pine3 sm

We made a stop at Mohawk Cafe in Crescent for a hearty breakfast before hitting the long dusty road to Portland.  We’ll see you next summer, Central Oregon!

20150724 crescent2 sm

20150724 crescent1 sm

20150724 crescent3 sm