A boy and a girl in a little canoe

Our 6th Day was I think the shortest day of driving.  It was under 3 hours from Mountain Home to Richland, MO.  “What’s in Richland, Cindy?”, you ask?  Well, The Cave Restaurant and Resort….now, don’t get too taken with that word resort, because it’s more of a camping resort.  This was the part of the vacation I was really looking forward to.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I like hotels with pools and soft cushy beds, but I also just LOVE camping.  Tents, sleeping bags, campfires and stars…This year, I decided the kids were old enough to handle ONE night of camping out.  They’re all girl scouts, and it wasn’t the first time in a tent for any of them.  (Note: for those of you interested but put off by sleeping on the ground, The Cave does have cabins available too)  But first, we had to grab a bit of lunch at the restaurant and then we were off to take a wonderful canoe trip down the Gasconade river.  Now, we weren’t adventurous (read here stupid) enough to take our phones or cameras (yes, that’s right, even *I* left my iPhone in the car for well over 4 hours!), so we have no pictures of the canoeing, but he all had a great time.  I had Sophie and Daphne in my canoe and David had Kelli.  I took the lead with the little girls, and from time to time, we’d “pull over to swim”.  It was SO incredible to not be in a hurry to get anywhere and just be completely away from everything, just our family, together making wonderful memories.  *sigh* I want to go back!!!!  Eventually, we did make it to the “end of the line”.  We returned to the restaurant for dinner and had the most incredible meal and a nice continuation of our family time.  Although there *were* other people in the restaurant, we all felt as if we had the place to ourselves.  Now, this restaurant is in a cave that is cut into the side of a cliff.  It’s really cool, totally unique, and from what I understand, it’s possibly going to be featured on the food network sometime soon!  After an incredible dinner (we all ordered something different and ALL of it was delicious) we went for a quick swim in the river before bed to cool off a bit and then we all fell asleep to the sounds of crickets chirping, owls hooting, and of course, Sophie yapping.  (oops did I just say that?)  Truly a wonderful day!

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