Weekend of Wonderfulness

So this past weekend we went on a holiday to the Ozarks with some of our lovely St Louis friends.  We stayed at a Camphill Community home in the countryside – an oasis of calm with baby chicks, hens that roost in trees, lots of perfectly mown pathways through the fields and a spacious and cool farmhouse that had been graciously given over to us all to enjoy.  We felt very spoiled!

Late last week we gained a shade tent for Kazuo to play in when we are out in the hot Missouri sun, so we were looking forward to using it by the riverside on the weekend.  Sadly, by the time we got to the river, it was really too late for him to sustain much outdoors time, and the river was crowded… not such a great idea for little Kaz… but here he is playing happily in it at home, I am sure we will be getting lots of poolside action with it really soon!

Kaz in the Shade TentThis weekend was Kazuo’s first road trip.  He was remarkable.  We managed to drive over his big lunchtime nap (it was a five hour journey) and take a lunch break then he played happily with Mama in the back seat until his late afternon kip.  He coped really well with the motorway services, here he is looking rather supercilious at the Rolla Steak and Shake:

Kaz at Steak and ShakeStupidly, I was enjoying the relaxing lifestyle so much, I forgot to get out the camera again, but I did steal a couple of pics our friend Katie posted on Facebook.  (Thanks Katie!)

The best part of the weekend for us was just being outdoors in the countryside.  The birdlife was amazing (at one point there was a Cardinal, Indigo Bunting and American Goldfinch all on the feeder outside the living room… so vivid, so primary!) and we saw some really lovely butterflies in the fields.  There were also some startling little dragonflies at this pond:

By The Pond at Oakhill

When everyone had returned from the river and had naps on Saturday, we ventured into the nearby town of West Plains for the Ozark Old Time Music festival.  Katie tried her hand at hatchet throwing, we wandered through the market stalls and then heard some engaging fiddling.

Old Time Music

We watched some country dancing, and then headed home as the heat was really overwhelming Kazuo.  It has been rather intense since last week, and this week the weather forecast site has scary little burning thermometers to indicate that the temps are likely to rise above 100degF on most days this week.  Ugh!  Note to self, when you go away in the summer… do NOT turn off the aircon… it was unbearable here last night, and poor Kaz is still tired and miserable because of the heat.  It seems to finally be getting back to normal, over 12hrs since we returned – horrible!

On Saturday night we had been offered a bonfire that was stacked on the field beside the house.  So Akira and the lads went out to light it (it was hot enough that night… but really, there is something magical about a big fire).  This was his first bonfire lighting experience, and it was extremely successful… a tribute to the bonfire stackers too I think!  So we had a lovely blaze, some wonderful entertainment from our talented musical friends, and our most favourite American campfire tradition… S’mores – mmmmm perfect!

Akira Lighting Bonfire

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