jon and i want jasper lilith to see the woods in more than just the pretty, cultivated, cement sidewalk-type way so we have decided to start hiking and camping in all the nearby state parks…  luckily, we are surrounded by some beautiful state parks!!

this would have been jasper’s second camping trip but life intervened and we will be going to ruston instead – maybe camping next week – but we decided to go check out the trails and the campsites anyway…

as i mentioned before, we are absolutely surrounded by state parks and it is kind of eeni-meeni-miney-mow decision-making but the one we picked was the mineral wells state park in, you guessed it, mineral wells…  a pretty little town, by the way, all nestled in the hills and picturesque… and sweetly enough, it is only about 45 minutes away…  nice!

the state park is a good one – lots of hiking trails and a huge lake with a swimming beach to boot!

we paced a picnic lunch, lots of water and plenty of sunscreen (i still burned a bit ‘cuz i forgot my hat) and headed out for the day!

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after lunch, jon and jasper tried their hands at fishing but that didn’t last long before we just put the rods up and hiked…

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the trails are pretty uphill and rocky in many places so we all got some exercise today!  here is one tired girl that said:  “i sit down…  whew!  so tired…  going to sleep…” and she proceeded to lay down on her back and do some pretend snoring before jumping up and asking for some water…  it wasn’t long after that before she migrated to jons shoulders 🙂

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the art of rock sitting!

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it was almost 90 degrees in mineral wells today and it got rather warm with all the hiking so we hit the swimming beach to cool our feet off…  jon wandered off to check out some more fishing but jasper and i fixated on the beach!

she kept wanting to take her clothes off and “go swimming!” but she had to make do with just wading…  and, oh man, did it feel good!  cold at first but that was the whole point so i can’t complain 🙂

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she loved the beach (what child doesn’t love beaches?) and had fun squishing her toes in the sand…

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and picking up rocks…  lots and lots of tiny, little rocks…

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jon and jasper lilith taking in the sight and enjoying the wind and the company…

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jasper looks pretty comfortable, doesn’t she?

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here she is making her way across a rocky patch of trail…  she is saying, “oh, mama, be cayful…  is kinda slippy!  cayful, ok?” (cayful=careful)

slippy, huh?  funny girl…

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it was nice to be in the woods (despite all the spiderwebbing in the face) and we all had a ball!

we will definitely go back for a camping excursion and we will have to put the swimming beach to full body use once swimming season gets here too!

ohhhhh, swimming!!  i can’t wait!!

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