A few days at Echo Lake

August 8-14, 2006
Kathi, Lara, Ella and Marianne drive from Clifton Park to Echo Lake -- Lara's first visit this year. How will she like it??

  1. Dad, illogically, claims he is no good at comforting Ella. Evidence points otherwise.

  2. Ella elicits a smile

  3. Brace yourself. This is the first of 10,000 early morning fog-on-the-lake pictures. You have been warned.

  4. The first morning we were there, it was shockingly cold -- maybe 58 degrees outside -- so Dad built a fire in the potbelly stove so the kids wouldn't shiver.

  5. Failed attempts at an Art Shot(tm) of the stove

  6. Three sleepy heads in bed

  7. Lara plants an exuberant kiss on Ella, something she does a dozen times a day

  8. Ella takes it in stride

  9. The lake is always there

  10. Sunrise

  11. The greenery has really grown up in front of the cottage

  12. Ella has a penetrating gaze

  13. taking after her big sister in this regard

  14. Dad makes bacon for everyone

  15. Kathi says, Don't turn me in - my kid is playing with scissors -

  16. The good thing is, Lara is perfectly well aware of what she's doing (check out that expression) so she's reasonably cautious. And hey, we didn't really let her play with the scissors.

  17. We leave Ella with Mom while we go blueberry picking - Ella remained in slumber for 10 minutes, and then got vocal

  18. The littlest blueberry picker

  19. Kathi knows how to do it

  20. Lara learned the mantra from Grandpa: "One for the bucket, one for me"

  21. Playing at the sandbox, which is in the yard around the ice cream stand in Triangle. After the exhausting work of picking eight (8) pounds of blueberries (!!!), we had to stop for soft serve dipped in chocolate, just to get our strength back up. They have 2-inch miniature soft serve cones, "baby size", that were perfect for Lara.

  22. A blur

  23. I think I need another baby cone

  24. Thanks, Mommy!

  25. Taking the ice cream home in the car is an operation.

  26. Kathi operates the motor, and I attempt to reign in Lara, on Lara's second rowboat outing

  27. Go that way, Mommy!

  28. The littlest sailor

  29. But from time to time, Lara would remember home, and wail: "I want to go home!" I was amazed at her grasp of all these abstractions, like "yesterday" and "home" and so on.

  30. Appropriate technology: fingers

  31. Noodle conqueror?

  32. The efficient method

  33. We went for a walk after dinner - amazing how those reflective bands on the baby carrier really reflect light

  34. Dad lists dangerously to one side, to avoid jostling Ella awake

  35. Side view

  36. Closeup

  37. Lara of light and shadow

  38. Getting ready to go for a walk with Grandma to pick flowers

  39. Lara has a big bunch of some yellow flowers

  40. She quickly gets into the spirit of plucking blooms

  41. Let's see, I need these, and these ...

  42. Back home at the lake, Lara discovers it's just as much fun to row the rowboat while it's tethered at the dock

  43. Picking blueberries off the bush next to the lake

  44. First you pick a cupfull. Then you dump them on the ground. Then you pick them up off the ground.

  45. Lara loved the orange paddle boat. She figured out her legs reached the pedals better if she faced them backwards (sitting on the boat instead of sitting in one of the passenger's seats)

  46. The monkey swing is in business

  47. Great fun at first ...

  48. ... until you start to slip off ...

  49. ... and wail for Mariannie to get you off! (Lara named me Mariannie.)

  50. Further search for blueberries. I have no idea why I shot this one slantways.

  51. Throwing rocks in the lake is one of the most fun activities. Apologies to Grandpa who laboriously hauled two wheelbarrow's full of rocks out of the lake, so that Lara's little feet wouldn't get hurt when she went in swimming.

  52. Sometimes Lara would crawl like a baby up the ramp.

  53. One more go-round on the paddle boat!

  54. Another early morning, another sequence of fog-on-the-lake.

  55. Legitimate Art Shot(tm).

  56. Whitmarsh's Barn, or, The Red Barn. I guess Whitmarsh sold the farm.

  57. Bales of hay

  58. with flowers

  59. Mom asked some saffron-robed Buddhist monks in the laundromat why they were doing laundry in Greene, and they said there's a Tibetan Buddhist retreat out towards McDonough. There was an open-to-the-public Lama Dance on Saturday, so we dropped by for the mysterious and slumber-inducing event. There are hundreds of the gaily colored Tibetan prayer flags fluttering all over the place.

  60. Inside the Buddhist temple

  61. A closeup of the musicians

  62. A Buddhist temple and an American flag

  63. You were warned.

  64. A chair for you to relax in

  65. Mom and Dad at the Binghamton airport

Marianne Mueller
Last modified: August 22, 2006