A Long Weekend Up North | Hayward, WI | Documentary Photography

This weekend we ventured north to Hayward, WI. This area of Wisconsin holds a special place in both my and my husband's heart. For me, some of my most vivid memories as a toddler are of a summer vacation spent on Spider Lake with my parents, sister and brothers, and grandparents on my father's side. I recall majestic boat rides, fishing, exploring of islands, lots of singing/acting JUST like Veda does all day every day, almost drowning off the dock at our rental cabin (one of a couple angel encounters I've had), and playing "Kokomo" a gazillion times at the rental property bar's jukebox. 

For Mike.......well, he explains the feeling he gets when he's in this area as being in a different world. The smells, the trees, the supper clubs, the lakes and the muskies that are just waiting to be caught. It's his happy place.

As a family of our own now, we have huge dreams of spending our summers in this area near the Chequamegon Forest. With countless lakes and so much natural untouched beauty, it's the perfect place for us to escape the mundane and busy lifestyle we lead most of the time. Even just the act of driving to the Northwoods brings a sense of peace not felt back home in River Falls. 

Almost to Grindstone Lake, Hayward WI

Almost to Grindstone Lake, Hayward WI

We rented a cabin on Grindstone Lake for a 3 day weekend and invited along Aunt Lacy and Uncle Mike. Thank GOD for these two who are not only the kids' godparents but our besties! A huge thank you to Lacy who just picks up my camera and makes sure to grab photos of me with my kids. I'm forever grateful to you :)


Mike got up in time to see the sunrise each morning while I "slept in" with the kids.....if you can call 6:30am wake up call sleeping in. Cartoons got me through the morning so I could sip on some coffee and admire the lake views, and then it was boating, fishing, exploring, singing, campfires, smores, pudgy pies, frisbee, and using their imagination. There was lots of independent play, which is tough for my kids lately. We've had to make a conscious effort to watch the amount of screen time we are giving them, and encourage them to entertain themselves either separately or together. 

I'm now obsessed with pudgy pies, thanks to this weekend. Growing up, I don't know why I can only remember having a few ever. Lacy made me the most amazing breakfast one, consisting of hash browns, cheese, bacon, an egg, and salt/pepper. It turned out AMAZING; the perfect crunchiness and burnt crisp outside with the egg cooked to perfection on the inside.

Breakfast pudgy pie

Breakfast pudgy pie

We also did pepperoni pizza and ham/cheese pudgy pies and every single one was a hit.

We took some time to venture into the town of Hayward to get some ice cream, even if we were in our pajamas already. Remember to check out West's Hayward Dairy on your up north vacation and stop and smell the flowers in the small garden across the street. My kids also found a purple wall which, mixed with the impending sugar rush from the ice cream, caused an impromptu ham session :)

We're now back home, exhausted (as evidenced by Brooks' 2nd nap of the day and both kids' hourly meltdowns) but happy to have made these memories in one of our favorite places. Until next time, Hayward, we'll be dreaming of the future where any weekend we want is spent at the lake!