We really did have a great time visiting Matt and Molly. Saturday, we drove out to Caddo Lake. I guess there's a whole Cyprus forest growing in the middle of the lake, all hung with Spanish moss and everything, and it's amazing. They had taken Matt's folks on a boat tour of the lake when they had visited a few weeks prior to our visit, and they thought we might like it. When we arrived, however, we discovered that everything around the lake was flooded from all the rain they've been having down there, and some of the "houses" for the boat tours were totally under water. Most of the docks were covered. Basically, there was too much water for boats.
This picture is of a parking lot. You can kind of see an information sign a ways out, probably about two-thirds covered with water.
So, instead instead of taking a boat tour of the lake, we hiked a trail right there in the state park, and it was a fun little adventure.
We all used bug spray, but somehow we all still got bitten. Poor Eloise had it the worst: her little eye was nearly swollen shut the next morning!
The park also had a nice playground area where we sat and enjoyed some snacks and, of course, played. Evie and Eloise impressed me with their fearless trips down a rather old, very long metal slide.
Sunday, we visited Fellowship Bible Church, where Matt and Molly have been attending. Molly even played cello with the praise team during the service! While we were in "big church," all three girls went to their separate classes/nursery. After church, I was asking Evie how Children's Church went (we call it Children's Church where we attend), but then I tried to remember I'd heard it called when I'd dropped her off...finally, I remembered: Kinder Kids!
So, I restated my question, "How was Kinder Kids?"
She looked at me like I was nuts. "It wasn't Kinder Kids!"
Me: "Yeah, honey, I think that's what it was called."
Evie: "No. Our teacher told us what it was called. It was...it was...CANNER Kids."
Me: "Canner Kids? Like, did you work in a cannery?" (Yes, I am silly and slightly sarcastic with my kids a lot.)
Evie: "For real, Mom. The teacher said it was called Canner Kids."
And then it dawned on me. We were in TEXAS. Of course the lady told her it was called Canner Kids. That's exactly how an East-Texan would sound, pronouncing Kinder Kids. Molly and I had a good laugh about it, but Evie asked me not to talk about it anymore. So I'm not. I'm just typing.*
Sunday night, we had a bonfire at Stonehouse, where Matt and Molly live and serve as house parents for people who come to serve at Missionary Tech in a somewhat short-term capacity (I think?). We roasted hot dogs and s'mores. The girls call marshmallows "marsh-a-moles," and when they roast one, they say they "marsh a marsh-a-mole." We even had some live music--Molly played guitar, and their friend, Joel, played mandolin. Except for more blasted mosquitoes, it was great!
Monday morning, we woke up (at Stonehouse--we slept there Saturday night) to a birthday party! Molly wanted to celebrate all three girls' birthdays, because they had been gone for Audrey and Evie's birthdays, and Eloise's is coming up quickly. They had filled the hallway outside our bedroom with balloons.
Molly made muffins with candles in them, and yummy French toast. There were presents for all three girls: Evie and Eloise got homemade paper dolls (so, so cute!), sparkly batons with streamers, cowboy hats, feather boas, jump ropes, and a neat book; Audrey got a stuffed dog, some hair clips, and a cloth book with clear plastic windows for photos, and Molly inserted pictures she printed off my blog.
Everything was delightful, and the girls were so excited! As part of the party, Molly also tuned their ukulele to a major chord and let the girls take turns playing it.
Oh my...what fun!!! There were even a couple of party games with prizes!
Once we finally finished partying, we headed over to Missionary Tech to see the building and meet some of the team. Unfortunately, we arrived just as they were calling people in for chapel, so we really didn't get to meet very many people (although, the ones we did meet were very nice!), but we did get to tour the building, in its present, in-the-middle-of-remodeling state, and it's going to be great.
From Tech, we headed to a nearby town to visit an oil museum. Of course, when we arrived, we discovered that the oil museum is closed on Mondays, so we just peeked in some windows and piled back into the van. I had it in my head that one must eat some good Mexican food while visiting Texas, so we took Molly out to lunch and did, indeed, enjoy some good Mexican food.
It was hard to hit the road for Missouri after lunch--Molly and I had a teary goodbye--but I just keep reminding myself that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and she and Matt will be here! Of course, thinking of Thanksgiving also makes me think of all the things I need to do before then, so I should get off the computer. I'll post later about the rest of our trip!
*Seriously, while I was working on this post, Evie came up alongside me and said, "Mom! Why are you typing about Canner Kids?!?" She proceeded to read that whole section aloud, including the part that said, "...but Evie asked me not to talk about it anymore. So I'm not. I'm just typing." Let's just say, she was not amused. But I was!