We had our annual friendmily camping trip last weekend. In an attempt to avoid being packed in like sardines with RVers and people we've never met, we booked sites at a tiny state park that none of us had ever seen. The website was not exactly honest about the state of the sites. The maps made it look like it was short walk to the site from a road, but we had to haul our stuff from the car about 100 yards through the woods. There was a building on the map marked "restroom" which turned out to be an outhouse. I can deal with an outhouse, but this one was infested with mosquitoes. Also, there was no water source to be found and nowhere to buy firewood. With barely enough cell phone signal to text our friends to warn them, things were pretty dire for a while. After trying several times to find the alleged on-site host, we finally found someone who pointed us toward the haphazardly chopped and very damp wood we could use (which we at least didn't have to pay for), MB got a respectable fire going, and things started to improve. There was a group of obnoxiously loud runners who showed up at 7:45 AM on Saturday to slam doors and shout and do calisthenics in the parking lot, which kind of spoiled the solitude angle. But you know…overall it was a really good weekend. The site was beautiful - we camped under tall pines with a full moon overhead and at night we were the only people on our patch of ground. I don't know about everyone else, but I'd do it again if I knew ahead of time to bring wood and extra water. Pretty campsite shots stolen from evilducky since I waited until the last day to take any and then it rained:
Nico was a great little camper. He roamed a little farther than MB or I preferred the first evening we were at camp, but he got better about minding boundaries and listening. The first two nights he fell asleep in the tent and slept through the night (the third night he wouldn't settle and ended up sitting on my lap by the campfire until he finally fell asleep). I always feel a little bit of pressure having the only kid on a trip, but I'm hoping no one's opinion of him was ruined…even though evilducky and her husband did have to witness a pre-nap tantrum on Saturday. (Sorry about that!) I was tired and definitely could've been more patient with him about napping and such things, but overall I think we did okay. I enjoyed being out on an adventure with him, watching him try new things, and seeing how much he's changed in such a short time. I hope if he remembers anything about our trip he remembers the impossibly tall pines, the big rocks he explored, the visit to the swing set, his bedtime stories by the campfire. We're taking him camping again a week from now, and I'm hoping for a repeat of his good behavior and more patience and time-taking on my part. I think we'll be okay.
So, how about some photos? Nico was SO PROUD to carry his own backpack, which was hilariously almost as big as his whole body:
We drove to Garden of the Gods on Sunday because J-Dog had never been. It was lovely and not at all crowded. Nico looked morose in all his posed photos, per usual, but we did get a few cute ones of him with me or MB:
Reading: Odd Apocalypse by Dean Koontz
Playing: Babel by Mumford and Sons