Today, we took a trip with the Langs to the nearby jewel-like sand dune lakes — Kai Iwi. One of the major beauty attractions of this region, Kai Iwi lakes are a lovely destination — for camping or just a day-trip.

Kai Iwi Lakes, June 2011
Hayden took this photo of the lakes. From this perspective it's easy to see the very wide, shallow shoulder at the edge — great for kids to play safely!

The three Kai Iwi lakes are filled directly by rain-water. There’s no other known source — and they’re carved out of the sand, so they’re pure and lovely to swim in. It’s especially nice to play on a sandy beach with fresh water. I’m not a fan of salt water and much prefer fresh water.

The girls loved this outing with their friends. Quickly they were off, digging in the sand and constructing elaborate channels in the sand.

Lang girls and ours, June 2011
The day was lovely and sunny — perfect for playing with water!

Lang girls and ours, June 2011
The girls soon started digging a series of tunnels to lead water from the top of the beach back down to the water's edge.

Brioni, 4yo, June 2011
The girls carried buckets of water from the lake to test their canal.

Brioni and Aisha, June 2011
I love it when the girls play outside happily for hours — it's a healthy habit to develop while young.

Lang girls and ours, June 2011
The girls worked together as a team to build and test their elaborate construction.

Lang girls and ours, June 2011
It's a pleasure to hang out with another family with four daughters.

Fishers and Langs, June 2011
We spent most of the time hanging out up at the vehicles, chatting while the kids played on the beach.

We’re still staying with our Dargaville friends the Langs. It’s lovely to be part of a large family, sharing the responsibility for children, meals and housework. Our daughters know we’ll need to move on soon, but they’re making the most of their new friendships — even sharing the girls’ bedroom for several nights!

Delaney, 17 months old, June 2011
Back home, clean and warm, we all enjoyed an ice cream at the end of the day. Yum! Delaney loved hers.