After living in our neighbourhood for 7 years, we finally did it - woke up on a July Saturday morning and took our whole family (I guess we just waited until we had 4 kids to bring along, more fun that way, you know) to the hike in honour of the Pioneer Day. We *almost* didn't make it. The hike was supposed to start at 7 a.m., and no matter how determined Mark and I were to get up no later than 6:30, it was 7:04 a.m. on my watch when Mark woke me up. We pulled kids out of bed (they were excited, for the most part), loaded them in the car, armed them with yogurt and spoons, and arrived to the starting point of the hike almost exactly an hour late. We figured if we went pretty fast we would get to the finish (First Encampment Park) not too far behind the early risers group. We ran as much as we could, Ivy on Mark's back, Elijah and Anya in the stroller, and Maya on her own two feet. And when we couldn't run, we walked fast. Maya was a trooper, running/walking most of the 5 mile hike (at about 12 mins/mile pace) with a scraped knee, only taking a short ride in the stroller when she was too tired, during which time Elijah took a turn walking. He did fine, but seemed to have misplaced his walking feet, so back in the stroller he went.
Half an hour later and half way through the hike, we finally called one of our friends who was hiking with the group (full of people who woke up early and left on time) to see where they were. Turns out, they were just a block or two away. We finally caught up with everyone, and joined the 200-ish crowd of people walking to the First Encampment Park. Free breakfast awaiting the hikers was a nice touch (and a nicer one would be scrambled eggs for those who don't eat pancakes). And as for me, I just enjoyed seeing so many people in one place, remembering and celebrating the historical event, or simply enjoying food in the company of friends and neighbours.
Speaking of food, we rewarded ourselves later, with personalized, home-baked (yes, in July), gluten-free pizza and freshly made red currant lemonade (those red currants deserve a post of their own).