As we packed up the lake yesterday, I was reminded of one of our favorite books by Karel Hayes….The Winter Visitors. In this book the Summer Visitors (another favorite book from Karel Hayes) pack up their lake house and head home for the winter. The Winter Visitors, a family of bears, move into the house and enjoy a wonderful winter. The bear family moves out just before the Summer Visitors return in the spring.
As I stripped the beds, packed the linens in plastic bags, covered all of the dishes and small appliances and moved the porch furniture into the house…..I thought about the Winter Visitors coming to stay at our house over the next six months. It is much more fun to imagine a family of bears moving in and enjoying our space rather than picturing the mice and squirrels who will actually take up residence there.
October is always a bitter sweet time at the lake. It is great to see our lake family and spend time together but it is also sad to watch everyone pack up and get ready to leave. It will be six long months before we see each other again and set eyes on that beautiful mountain view. Through the teary good bye, my heart was filled with so much gratitude. We are so blessed to have such a magical place to visit and even more blessed to have such special friendships as a result of that place.
The kids and I went to say “good-bye” and “thank you” to the lake before we left. This is a ritual that we do each and every time we leave, even if we are only leaving for a few days. As we sat on the end of the dock, I told them to take a photograph with their minds. At first they looked at me strangely and asked what I meant. I told them to freeze the lake view in their minds so they could have it to think about during the cold winter months ahead. They loved this idea and closed their eyes tight to take their own mental photo of the beautiful foliage and mountains.
I hope the Winter Visitors enjoy their time at the lake. We will be back in the spring to open up again and look forward to another wonderful season at the lake.
Some photos from our weekend…..