This week we went camping - FOR REAL. Boogs was very excited about camping at a campground instead of under the dining room table or in the backyard. For the past several years, Daphne has invited us to join her Moms & Kids camping trip. This is the first year we have been able to go. We went to Colorado Bend State Park. Somehow I skipped over reading the very descriptive word primitive before the word camping on the park's website. Boogs and I had a wonderful time. He LOVED it. I took way too many pictures to post, so I will share some of my favorites. Daphne has 4 boys and Julie and L joined us for part of the campout.
Click on the picture collages to see them full screen.
The River Group Camping Area was gorgeous! Shortly after we arrived, all four tents were set up. The boys explored and played for a while before deciding to break out the Monopoly game. Luckily, most of the chewing gum came off of the board.
It was hot! The 100 degree heat and half mile walk to the swimming hole had us extremely thankful for the cool water. I had all six boys by myself at the swimming hole for about 45 minutes. Three of them were non-swimmers. That was a little nerve wracking but everyone was fine.
When we returned to camp, it was time to eat. In this first picture, Boogs, J1, J2, & J4 were shouting at the cliff by the river to hear the echo. Roasted hot dogs, fruit, veggies, and Campfire Cones (waffle cones, Rolos, and mini marshmallows) made a great dinner. The boys left the campfire to go sit on a tree branch to tell scary stories. The looked so cute all lined up in a row. Then the flashlights came out for flashlight tag, flashlight hide & seek, and flashlight under the chin scary stories. The four J boys and Boogs all piled into one tent to go to sleep. That did not last long.
Our campsite was finally quiet around 11:15 pm. Well, quiet except for
the thieving raccoons prowling around. They made a bunch of noise, especially when they were fighting with each other. At one point during the night,
there were ten large raccoons crawling all over the picnic tables. They
managed to pry the lid off of Daphne's Rubbermaid food box. She ran out, scared them off, and then locked the box in the cab of her truck. I locked my food in my car before I went to bed and put my cooler in the tent with me. The other coolers had bungee cords holding on the lids. That kept the raccoons out of the coolers on the first night.
We decided to spend part of our day hiking to Gorman Falls. I walked ahead with the speedy boys in our group. The hike was much hotter and more challenging than we expected. There was not enough shade. It took us a couple of hours to hike to the falls and back. The falls were beautiful. Boogs was extremely disappointed that swimming was not allowed at the falls.
After our hot day of hiking, the boys rode bikes, played ball, walked on stilts, played more Monopoly, read books, and enjoyed playing around our campsite before we headed back to the swimming hole to cool off in the evening.
Daphne had the perfect afternoon treat - making homemade ice cream in a baggie. It was fun watching the boys try to shake their baggies for a full ten minutes. Boogs and two others liked the ice cream. It did taste a tiny bit salty but that did not stop Boogs from slurping up every last drop.
At the campfire that night, I took my hair down from a clip and J4 gave me an odd look and asked, "What happened to your hair?" Yes, I looked beautiful after two days of heat, hiking, river water, sunscreen, bug spray, and no running water. That is what camping is all about. We really enjoyed the kids scary stories that night. Even the 2-year-old told one, "Once there was a girl... she a witch." When he paused, Daphne asked if that was the end of his story. He held up one little finger and very dramatically said, "Almost! Then the witch... ate all the apples. That's all." We managed to get the kids into the tents by 9:30. Unfortunately, the raccoons had them freaked out and unwilling to go to sleep. It was a long night.
When I woke up I discovered that those
thieving raccoons figured out how to move the bungee cord to get the
ice chest open. They ruined our planned pancake breakfast. The ice
melted and the food got hot. We had to throw out sausage, buttermilk,
eggs, and other things.
We had planned to go on one more hike before packing up camp but the raccoons' dent in our food supply had us packing up early to head to town to eat. All of the boys helped carry our stuff up the steep hill to load the cars. We had a quick brunch at Subway before heading home.
The first things we did when we got back home was wash the car and ourselves. I really missed running water and air conditioning. I am very glad that Boogs and I went on this little adventure. It truly was fun.
Thanks Daphne for including us on the camping trip, having fun things for the kids to do, and for having such an amazingly pleasant and positive attitude!
This post is linked to Country Kids From Coombe Mill weekly outdoor link party.