Sunday, October 16, 2011

Camping with the Kids

MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 MOMS Club Camping Trip 2011 
So by now, dear reader, you know that I have a nearly 3 year old and a nine month old.  (I didn't post about it, but he is.  Just a few days ago.  Happy 9 months little man!)  So what in the world would possess me to take them camping?   Yes, you read that right.  Camping.  Well, read on.

Nearly a year ago, while still pregnant with Judah, I discussed the possibility of a camp out with a sweet friend, but winter and a newborn and then spring and summer passed by and I never got around to it.  But this lovely fall weather was coming and I wanted to camp!  So we planned it.  Our MOMS Club and I.  I wrote lists, I gathered, I grocery shopped, and packed and packed.  I asked for the sage advice of my mother who camped with us while my siblings and I were little.  And it would not all fit in the car!  And so I left the one thing that she said I had to bring (a pack n play) and later did the one thing she said not to do with toddlers (had an open fire).

In spite of all that, it was, by far the most glorious camping trip I have ever been on.  Perfect weather, gorgeous changing leaves, wonderful friends to help and work and cook together with, an unrelated (to me) gramma to hold the baby (thanks Bobci!), campfires, food cooked in the coals, a beautiful display of the Moon and Jupiter dancing across the night sky, gorgeous sticky and grubby kids wired on s'mores, making 'force fields' with their glow sticks, a baby who napped like he had been sleeping in a tent his entire life, hiking, fishing, kite flying, star gazing, and children playing together and no one fighting!  There were no toys to be declared 'Mine!', just more nature objects to be found, and compiled, discussed, and examined.  I wish I had taken a picture of Cora's 'secret garden' aka a beautiful leaf sculpture she made upon arriving.  But I was too busy pitching a tent in the fading light.

The Geek, bless his non-outdoorsy self, joined us for one of the two nights but had it pretty rough with no extra warm clothes and getting crowded off the air mattress by the baby and me.  Then he had to drive back to town to work the next morning, poor guy!  We discussed how to make it better next time.  At least he's still willing to try! 

Tired and slightly sunburnt, I drove the short trip back home from Montgomery Bell State Park and unpacked the car.  Cora protested, "I don't want to go inside.  I'm gonna stay out here in this (camp) chair."  And why not?  She had been outside for three days!  It felt strange to me to be inside again too, where dirt suddenly made my house dirty.  Cora brought home a "box of nature" to show her Papa, including sticks, leaves, rocks, moss and some cold chunks of coals that she got from somewhere.  (Hopefully not the fire pit!)  At dinner she declared that she was going to sleep outside on the porch.  I understood what she meant.  Had we had a fenced in back yard, I would have pitched the tent back there and had another night under the stars.  I learned a few lessons about camping with kids, but we will be doing it again.  Hopefully in the Spring!


Alice said...

I got some shots of her secret garden - I'll send them to you.

Nikki said...

Beautifully put, and I concur, it was an incredible trip and so hard to come home. Thanks for all of the hard work you put in on the front end.

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