Another wonderful vacation is in the books for the Stegall family and unlike the others over the last 15 years, we actually did something new. Our trip was to my Aunt and Uncle's (Susie and Carl) vacation house on the Machodoc river near it's confluence with the Potomac.

No TV, no internet and no cell phone service. After a short period of withdrawals I found out that you can actually not only survive without constant communication, it's actually quite nice. Also nice was the unseasonably cool breezy weather and low humidity. The whole week couldn't have been better.

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The house and it's view of the river.

Carl and Susie were great hosts and kept us busy with outdoor activities. I also gained a couple pounds from all of the good food. The kids had lots of new experiences and never once ask about a tv or computer. Boats, kayaking, wildlife, swimming, dock jumping and just running around kept everyone busy and worn out.

Carl's a really serious kayaker and we spent some time in their boats. A few miles of paddling gave me new respect for distance kayaking. Crossing a big body of water with a side or head wind is a serious workout.

Whitney coming back from a long paddle in the fast boat.

Wildlife was everywhere. Big pirds of prey feeding and even some mid-air battles including two Osprey and mature Bald Eagle going at it.

A mom Osprey was busy all week coming and going feeding her young in the nest right next to the dock.

Bad picture of a Bad Eagle. Tried our best to get him to fly for a better picture, be he didn't seem interested.

Feeding the resident swans and their young. These things were HUGE.

Sitting there having a beer when this fox just popped out of the reeds in the river. Swimming? Looked pretty mangy all wet.

Spent some time in the boat which was always instant sleep for Molly and Will.

Captain Carl and Captain Susie.

Trip to Sharks Tooth Island. Just a bit of looking yielded a whole zip lock bag of sharks teeth for everyone except me. I was horrible at it. The kids thought it was the coolest.

Lots of time just sitting on the dock, swimming and watching the kids play.

Lots dock jumping. Molly had strict form as witnessed here.

Cooling the watermelon. The melon ending up being a fun water toy for the kids.


Will showing promise with the solid wrap. No University of Tennessee shoulder tackles here.

Celebrating the 4th of July watching fireworks and roasting smores over a bonfire.

Gorgeous sunsets most every night.