Ohio Road Trip - Part 2 - Cuyahoga Valley & Put-in-Bay - Travel Photography

We got up early in our teepee and prepared breakfast. Oatmeal and fresh fruit, for Scot and I (I wish I could get my kids to eat Oatmeal) and Fruit and Pop tarts for the boys. We packed up and headed towards Canton Ohio to visit the First Ladies National Site. Canton really surprised us with its charm and how clean everything looked. Definitely a place we would like to explore in the future some more.

The First Ladies National Site was a lot more interesting than we thought and we really enjoyed the tour of the President McKinley's home. Finn completed another Junior Ranger Program and the tour lady gave us a great recommendation to a nearby restaurant for lunch.

Bender's dates back to 1902 and the boys thought it was really interesting that there used to be separate sections and entrances for men and women.

After lunch we hit the road for Cuyahoga Valley, Ohio's only National Park. This is another place that we will have to come for a separate trip! We visited the Brandywine Falls, Finn did ANOTHER Junior Ranger Program, we heard about the history of the park from a Ranger and we visited the old Erie canal and just walked around the little towns and shops.

Not sure what Jake is doing in the above picture, but I am sure he is telling me a joke and is very animated doing so!

We settled into our hotel and were surprised when the hotel management offered us a free waffle and ice cream bar! We called that dinner (ha!) and had a great nights sleep.

We got up the next day and headed towards Put-In-Bay. Our last stop on this whirlwind Ohio Tour. I love that Scot is more than happy to make u -turns for me to photograph interesting signs. These were my favorite from the trip.

We decided to take our car over to the island, which we probably wouldn't do again. The ferry ride is always very exciting for the boys! We arrived on the island and headed straight away to Perry's Monument. A very kind ranger gave us an amazing talk about the history and why Perry is such an amazing guy. He really was into it and the boys were fascinated by the talk! Since then the phrase "Don't give up the ship" has been used on an almost daily basis! Finn of course finished another Ranger program - his 4th in 3 days! We ate lunch somewhere on Put-In-Bay and afterwards rented a golf cart to really explore the island.

The Mayflies were everywhere on the island and as annoying as it can be we were told its a sign how good the water quality is around in the area and if they weren't there it would be a sign that there was a problem with the water.

Unfortunately, the Monument itself was closed due to construction. Bummer!

The golf cart was a great idea and we just drove all around the island and stopped wherever we felt like it. We came across an amazing estate sale and we all got to buy something. Scot bought a beautiful set of Rookwood Bookends, Jake bought a vintage fishing net, Finn a backscratcher and I bought a box full of vintage boys bowties.

After a full day of exploring the island, we got back on the ferry and headed back home to Cincinnati (a quick stop at Kewpee's Burger in Lima was a must!) and this completed a really, really quick trip all around Ohio. Even though short, this trip showed us how beautiful our home state is and we now have a bunch more places we want to revisit and spend more time.

aWhat is your favorite spot in Ohio? I can't wait to explore the Hocking Hills are some more!

Day 7 McGill's Go Up North - Tadoussac, St Lawrence, Mer et Monde

On Day 7 we woke up to perfect weather at our campsite over looking the St. Lawrence. Scot got up and drove into town for coffee and a fresh baguette. I sat outside for a long time alone and just taking it all in.

The kids slept for a long time and I couldn't believe my luck.

But then....

... this little kid came hoping over the rocks for his morning snuggles!

I was somehow able to convince him to sit really quiet with me, while Jakey was still sleeping and Daddy gone. It only worked for a little bit and Jake was up soon and the two played Narnia.

We have been listening to the first two books (at this point only the first) in the car on our road trip. Jake is always Peter and Finn is whoever Jake says he is... haha I know here they are re enacting Peter's First Battle in The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.

While the kids were playing Scot and I started packing up a little. Today is our last day at Mer et Monde.

In between we remembered that we forgot about our daily sign. I can't remember what was so funny but this one might be my favorite!

After we packed up a little we went over to the other side to explore the bay. We had a few hours before our kayak tour would start.

As soon as we go to the bay, the boys played Narnia again. Actually for most of the trip this is what they played. Hey, fighting with sticks sounds like a lot of fun!

After they were tired of battling each other we decided to make a dam with rocks at this little creek leading into the bay.

We didn't know what time it was and decided to leave. Remember how I only have flip flops and Toms with me.... there is a reason your Mom tells you to bring better shoes! I again fell and this time skinned the top of my toe. I also fell again on my tailbone. Oh man, this place did not like me. I will spare you the before picture, but I needed to wrap it up water proof for our kayaking tour.

Good old Duct Tape to the rescue. It actually worked pretty good!

After getting all bandaged up, we went over to our kayking tour only to find out it was cancelled again... bummer we are leaving and no more time to reschedule. Here is the amazing part though... even though we already went on the water for a while and that both times the tour was rescheduled because of weather, the company refunded me 100% of my money without me even asking! I was highly impressed!

We all said good bye to our favorite tour guide ever, but not before we got his info to meet up with him again one day!

Thank you Sammy for everything and for your patience to answer the bazillion questions. We hope your summer is going great and you will enjoy Japan!!! Tschuess!

We finished packing up the campsite, and organized the car and one last family picture! Finn is mad about something again... it's hard to be 6!

One last story at the campsite! I love how animated he tells his stories!

One last thing though... we came to Mer et Monde to show Finn and Jake the Beluga whales. At this point we still haven't seen any and we had a very sad little boy with us. Our last chance was to see one on the ferry back. We looked and looked and nothing... I could see the tears already setting in and just before we had to get back to the car, we spotted one!!! It was pretty amazing and it really made our day.

Long drive to our next stop - The Adirondacks! 8 hour drive but we decided to stop in the middle and get a hotel room. We found one just a little bit south of Quebec City. Got to the room, finally able to take showers and watch TV (the boys!) and off to bed we went!