But then, the payoff!
We were right on a point, and there was a nice-sized beach we could walk along, to take in the views along the lake. The girls couldn't wait to wade in and get their only clothes soaking wet just in time for the temperature to drop to right about hypothermia-degrees Fahrenheit.
They were so happy, though, we decided to risk death and let them frolic. We skipped some stones; it was a shale beach, so there was more than enough stone-skipping fodder to be had by all. I used to be pretty bad at this feat, but things were going pretty well for me that windy Saturday afternoon. Every time I managed to get a rock to make a few hops across the water, no one was watching. So finally I took the kids' approach and demanded Jeremiah's attention. I had a sweet stone, it was going to go clear across to the next outcropping. I took my stance, stretched my arm behind me, wrist ready to flick, then went for it, failing to release the rock at all, until it was much too late, and instead hit myself (with impressive velocity and precision) in the other hand. The bruise didn't even surface until Monday evening. Jeremiah was impressed, of course. I was really glad that was the one everyone got to see.
While we awaited the arrival of our friends, we located a wonderful campfire ring, right on the very tip of the point. Since our tent didn't fit on the nice tent-pitching spot, we'd had to set it up directly next to our site's little fire pit. It was pretty windy, so the campfire ring seemed like a better spot for flames and kumbaya'ing. I am much better at building campfires than I am at skipping stones.
Once everyone arrived (I have no pictures of our group because I was using my phone, and it was dying), we cooked a delicious dinner, then set to work on s'mores straight-away. The children ran through the woods with their glo-stick axes (compliments of Aunt Jo Jo) screaming at the tops of their lungs for what must've been 4 days straight. We did finally get them all into bed, cozied up with their glowing axes and dreaming of roasted marshmallows. We went to the beach and our friend Jerry set up his telescope so we could see that Carl Sagan was right, there truly are billions and billions of stars. It was cool, but also cold, and I had to go crawl into my own bed shortly after looking at moon craters.
At last, it was time to home. We settled into the car with our peck of apples, 1/2 gallon of cider and collective stink and pointed ourselves toward Atlanta. It was a beautiful ride home through the mountains, but the girls didn't notice.