Our Girls' First Camping Trip

This weekend we continued our string of great-camping-trips-cancelled-prematurely-due-to-the-sky-opening-up-and-flooding-us-out. Meaning, we were having a good time and then it rained about an inch and a half in fifteen minutes. So we packed up a night early and headed to my parents' house (halfway between the campsite and home) arriving at 11:00 at night. (As an aside, I haven't been in bed before 11:00 pm in over a week, and oh my goodness am I EXHAUSTED).

But, before the deluge we had a fabulous time. On Saturday morning at 5:30 the girls got to experience one "fun" facet of sleeping outside: birds. It started with crows that I swear were sitting on top of our tent, and then proceeded to all sorts of different birds calling out and singing and generally celebrating day-break. It was loud and sudden, and even though the noise died down after only about ten minutes, we were up for good. Gabbie's eyes got great big, and I could just see her brain going behind them. I know that she might not remember this camping trip when she's older, but it was so much fun to get to watch her experience all these things for the first time. (Including s'mores - she thought they were okay, but in true Gabbie fashion, eschewed the s'more as a package deal, and was perfectly happy dining on marshmallows and chocolate bars. Also, a sugar detox is happening for the child this week, because we totally sugared her up all weekend.)

We were in the absolute minority at the campground in that we camped in a tent and cooked all of our food over the campfire. Aaron and I are both of the mindset that staying in a camper or RV that is equipped with a full kitchen or at least a grill, a tv, a bed, and air conditioning is not "camping." It is simply moving your comfortable living situation to a more nature-filled place. So, we went with our tent, a few sleeping mats and sleeping bags (and a pack and play for Sophie so she had a safe place to sleep), and a grill grate to put atop the campfire pit. It was awesome fun. We didn't do pretty much anything we had planned to do (another trend in our vacations), but we still had a great time. We took a couple of walks, watched the sun set over the bay, sat in chairs around the campsite and read books while holding napping babies, and ate our fair share of junk food (candy, chips, s'mores, etc. - also a camping tradition).

Unfortunately, we have the girls completely off schedule, and they both seem to think that 10:00 pm is a perfectly acceptable bedtime, so this week will be spent getting them back to sleeping at a more reasonable hour. However, the camping trip was so much fun I kind of want to head out again this weekend. We won't, but it will be happening again sometime soon.

Here are a couple pictures of the girls in the (orange, so that's the cause of the pictures' tint) tent.

Early morning portrait of a girl who just spent her first night in a tent and loved it.  



Cassie said...
July 26, 2011 at 2:46 PM

That sounds like such an awesome time. Your girls are both so gorgeous! I've actually never been camping, but I know Joe is eager to take the boys, since he has lots of fond memories of camping from when he was a kid. We may try it next year -- the way Will wonders around right now, I'd be afraid we'd lose him in the woods. ;)

wm said...
August 5, 2011 at 10:44 AM

Wow, congrats to you for making it work. The one time we tried camping with a child under 2, we got so little sleep that my husband took him home on the second night to sleep in beds! Would be interested to hear how you managed the sleeping, especially if you were all in one tent.

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