Sunday, July 10, 2011

Orr, MN

The drive from the lake to Orr was a tough one!  We left on a super sad note, scanning the horizon one last time for a little white & black dog bounding through the grass.  Shanan commented in tears, “It’s so easy to take things for granted; you just don’t realize how special something is to you until you don’t have it any more.”  Wise words from a ten year-old.  

We have certainly learned some valuable lessons from losing Belle, & not just about pets.  After she ran away, I realized how easy it is for something to happen when there’s a crowd & people or pets are out of their element.  I hugged my kiddos a little tighter & kept closer tabs on them.  I remembered the importance of the buddy system, especially important in crowds.  And, the silver lining is that we were blown away with how helpful & concerned the neighbors were, as well as the people at the Sheriff’s Department & the Humane Society.  Everyone seemed to check in to see if we had updates & we even saw some out looking for her, as well.  When Steve & my brother-in-law went into town to put up flyers, someone had already made copies of the flyer we had given & posted them in town. 

Pelican Lake is a beautiful as ever

Anyway, we did make it to Orr, a place of special memories for Steve & me.  We attended summer camp there as teenagers, and we went back as a married couple & worked canoeing for three summers from 1999 to 2001.  Tom & Jenny Burnett live on Pelican Lake and graciously let us park on their property and share a bit of life together for about three days.  Their five beautiful kids quickly won us all over, and our girls had an absolute blast here!  Shanan has always been interested in fishing in spite of the fact that her daddy has no fondness for it, and we encouraged her that this was the place to really learn all about it.  And learn she did!  Wow…she fished, and fished, and fished.  She pumped Tom for information so she could improve, and she was delighted to catch fish and even take them off the hook herself!  Alyssa fished, as well, though she wasn’t quite as delighted with it as Shanan.  Even Steve got reacquainted with fishing & enjoyed himself...because the fishing is just that good on Pelican Lake!  I think I see a fishing rod purchase in our future…
Shanan caught one of the famous Pelican Lake giant bluegills ;)

We did drive over to the old S.E.P. property, which bears little resemblance really to the camp it once was.  We also took the kids to see Vermillion Falls and the Gorge on Crane Lake.  If you haven’t been to this part of the country, it is such a gem!  There is something so incredibly peaceful about this part of the world.  Definitely a fisherman’s paradise, a canoeist or kayaker’s dream.  We’re looking forward to bringing our kids back here for a canoe trip in Voyageurs National Park and the Boundary Waters Canoe Area when we don’t have any nursing babes any more.  
Hiking to the gorge
The gorge, kayakers must love this place

Shanan caught a bass at the bottom of Vermillion Falls
Tom, Jenny, and baby Tessa.
Jonah and Morgan had a sleepover on the last night we were there
Lauren (don't tell the others but she was Steve's favorite)

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