Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Gratituesday-Florida State Parks
One of our favorite things to do together as a family is camp. We have been bitten hard by the camping bug! It is a pretty economical way for us to "get away" every now and then. It is so much fun to sit around a little campfire and talk and drink coffee early in the morning. It is such an adventure to set up camp and explore and "trek" to the "bathhouse" with your kids. It is so freeing to let your kids get as dirty as they want and not worry about it for a little while! This past weekend our family decided to escape from the Bike Fest (motorcycles up and down our street and very loud bands playing on a stage 100 yards from our house, thankyou-very-much!) and head to the "REAL Florida"...a Florida State Park! Gold Head Branch State Park is located in Keystone Heights, Florida...about 20 minutes from our house! This was our first time camping at Gold Head. It was SO NEAT! It is located in the area known as The Central Florida Ridge. It has lakes and sandhills and a huge ravine with every sort of flora and fauna! On Saturday morning, we went on a hike-it was National Trails Day! Part of The Florida Trail runs through Gold Head. It was a lot of fun...Brian carried Avery in the backpack carrier. Hadley was a good little hiker for about the first mile, after that, I carried her on my back a lot...wow-what a workout! Ben stayed with Grammy and Grandaddy since he was recovering from an ear infection. He had a great time and enjoyed not having to share the grandparents with his sisters! Florida has some WONDERFUL State Parks...we are very blessed! The camping facilities at all of the parks I have camped have been clean and well-kempt. The staff and volunteers are enthusiastic and passionate about their park. In Florida, we have an ocean, a gulf, rivers, springs, lakes and much more...so much opportunity for exploration! I am just so thankful for the state park system. And, of course, I am thankful that God created so many wonderful things for us to explore! Praise be to Him!
Hadley holding a baby ringneck snake we found on our hike through the ravine
The girls exploring the dried-up lake bed
mommy and the girls just hanging out together at Gold Head State Park