We had a big treat last week – we spent Monday through Friday at a rental house at a nearby lake: Lake Anna in Virginia.
I’ve been hearing about Lake Anna for years now from friends – it’s one of the closest lakes to the DC area (only 1.5 hours away) and I had heard it was quite nice, so it was a big treat to finally get to check it out. So nice it was such a short drive, too, especially with Riese in the mix!
I grew up swimming in lakes; my great grandparents lived in New Hampshire and we used to visit them in the summer when my brother and I were little and swim in the lake near their house, so lakes hold a lot of nostalgia for me. I love swimming and anything involving the water!
We were at Lake Anna with my parents and Matt’s parents – it was fun to get everyone together, and Riese loved having 6 adults paying attention to her as you can imagine! We also had 2 dogs with us – Freyja plus Millee, Matt’s parent’s dog. They had a blast – Freyja especially was living her best life.
We lucked out with amazing weather – it was a little cloudy on our very last day, but otherwise it was absolutely gorgeous. We also basically had the lake to ourselves since high season is over – September was a great time to be there!
The week revolved around water sports, which made me happy. We rented a kayak, a canoe, and a couple paddleboards so it was fun to have lots of options. Riese came in the canoe with us but stayed at home when we took out the kayak or paddleboards!
We also rented a boat for 3 days, which was a bit of a last minute decision but ended up being a really good call because it was something everyone could do together! We did happy hour on the boat every day which was lots of fun.
We also did lots of swimming off the boat – Riese loved it!
We stayed at the house/in the lake the entire time except one morning when Riese, Matt, and I drove over to Lake Anna State Park with Matt’s parents for a little hike.
We did a pretty wooded loop that took us along the lake. It was really pretty, and we had great weather for it – not too hot, not too cold!
Taking in the views:
We packed some sandwiches and other snackage to have a picnic lunch while we were out there (I forgot to get pictures) before heading back to the rental house for Riese’s nap (which ended up being a fail). She was fighting nap hard on this trip, probably because of all the excitement, but thankfully now that we’re home she’s back on the solid nap train!
Besides water sports, I also got in two runs – the first was with Matt and the second was solo. The road we were staying on was about 0.75 miles long and nice and wooded before you hit the main road, so we just ran up and down that a couple times. It was nice and peaceful!
We had lots of good meals while at the lake, too! We cooked and ate at the house for all our meals. Breakfasts were usually hard boiled eggs with whole wheat peanut butter banana bread (we brought it with us).
Or sometimes egg sandwiches, either on toast or English muffins. One day we had egg BLTs, which is always a fan fave!
Lunches were usually dinner leftovers or sandwiches – nothing super exciting so I didn’t get any pictures.
As for dinners, we had a delicious variety!
Monday night, the first night we were there, was my birthday, so we had a little birthday party! My parents brought ingredients to do grilled steaks and taco salad, and for dessert we had some pastries Matt’s parents brought from a French bakery in Pittsburgh.
On Tuesday night, I made us my Sheet Pan Mediterranean Chicken Thighs, which is always a big hit.
Served with some orzo and a stunning sunset view!
Wednesday night, Matt’s dad made his yummy cedar plank dill lemon salmon (<- similar to that recipe but grilled and minus the yogurt sauce), plus some roasted broccoli, microwaved sweet potatoes, and cornbread.
Our final night, we had my Greek lamb burgers, but made with turkey instead of lamb since we couldn’t find ground lamb. Plus a delicious Greek salad on the side.
It was such a treat of a week – I’m already missing it! It was great to have a change of scenery, to get some time off of work, and to spend time with family. Lake life was very relaxing!
We were all very sad to say goodbye to the lake on Friday morning – Riese especially was really distraught saying goodbye to “Mr. Boat”, which she was a huge fan of. Meltdown central when the rental company came and took it away.
Until next time, Lake Anna – thank you for the great week!