Camping Done Right, 2014

We went camping this past weekend. This is the tent Jon and I shared with Evangeline. The older kids had their own tent, further down the site. It worked out wonderfully for everyone.

I have been on several camping trips throughout the years, but this one…by far…was the best. We headed out with 6 other families, early Friday afternoon. There were no ‘bad’ spots to pitch a tent. Everything was beautiful.

Bellows is a beautiful site anyway. It’s impossible to find a bad place to camp. But we were lucky to have a friend with base access, as it is a bit more private.

This tent was "Beach-Party Central" for the duration of the trip.
This tent was “Beach-Party Central” for the duration of the trip.

There were 6 families all together. Ten teenage girls, 4 teen boys, 5 infant/toddlers, and too many little kids to list. It was busy and awesome .

Evangeline enjoyed some big sister time with Raven, until Raven headed out to kayak with friends.
Evangeline enjoyed some big sister time with Raven, until Raven headed out to kayak with friends.

I’m not going to show the other families and children, because none of them would appreciate me posting their children online. It’s a common courtesy thing. So it seems a bit self-centered here, but that’s the price of being polite. (Ok, technically there is a photo of another person’s kid below, but you can’t see him.)

Lenore and a friend took the kayak out, and I had to call them back before they paddled out to "Bunny Island".
Lenore and a friend took the kayak out, and I had to call them back before they paddled out to “Bunny Island”.

We arrived Friday afternoon, and set up camp. The kids were wild. After lots of beach time, dinner of hot dogs, sausages, mac-n-cheese and other “camp” foods, they took off to the beach in the dark to go “crabbing”. Lenore and one of her buddies found close to 40 sand crabs. It was crazy. No crabs were harmed during the adventure, and all were released into the wild before we made them come back to camp.

Me, dancing with Evangeline before sunrise.
Me, dancing with Evangeline before sunrise.

The teenagers had their own tents, and stayed up late into the night laughing, running around on the moonlit beach, and just being kids. Most of the adults, (including Jon and I) made it to bed by 11:00. Around 4:00 am, Evangeline began to stir. Usually she goes right back to sleep, but she noticed she was in a tent. No chance of her going back to bed after this. She was up and ready to play.

This turned out to be a treat for me, because the moon was out and bright. Everyone gets so jazzy about the sunrise. Not me. I’m a moon fan. Everything was silver and glowing, and the waves gently rolled onto the shore. Evangeline discovered her shadow. We had about 45 minutes alone together on the moonlit beach before she began to tire. It will always be one of my favorite memories of the trip.

Day 2, really getting the hang of this beach life.
Day 2, really getting the hang of this beach life.

Day two, Saturday was fantastic. Kayaking, swimming, playing in the sand…just a wonderful lazy day with friends. We made the kids wrap up from the beach earlier this time because we wanted to have an early dinner and then sit around a campfire.

Lenore eyed the Banana Cream pie.
Lenore eyed the Banana Cream pie.

Saturday evening dinner was a potluck with everything from grilled steak, to spaghetti and meatballs. After dinner, the kids played out skits for the adults. Lenore played some songs on the acoustic, and everyone had s’mores. The kids did make it back down to the beach, but it was in quiet groups. Most of the kids crashed in their tents around 10, while the adults drank wine and sat around a fire.

Waiting for the sun.
Waiting for the sun.

Early the next morning, we took Evangeline down to the beach to watch her first sunrise. She entertained herself, and we snapped some shots.

Strolling along while waiting  for the sun.
Strolling along while waiting for the sun.

We’re not sure if she was excited to see the sun. I doubt it, but she had this fun reaction at just the right moment……so I’m posting it below.

THERE'S the Sun!
THERE’S the Sun!

Lenore came down to the water’s edge briefly. Although the water was pretty calm, and the waves were small, she wanted to go surfing. Surfing smaller slower waves is more of a challenger for her. Not sure why, because those are honestly the only waves I can get up on. After a quick breakfast of a dry oatmeal packet, (she refused to wait for the water to boil), she headed out. She forgot her rash guard, but that didn’t stop her.

Paddling out.
Paddling out.
Waiting for the set. She got luck with a couple waves, but they were small.
Waiting for the set. She got lucky with a couple of waves, but they were small.
Taking a break....
Taking a break….
Having another go, once she saw more wave action.
Having another go, once she saw more wave action.
Posing for mom, because I said so.
Posing for mom, because I said so.

We stayed and enjoyed the beach until early afternoon.  By then it was time to pack up and head home. The kids crashed in the car, and were lifeless blobs the rest of the day. Jon caught a cold, (I have no idea how) and I broke my toe while packing. Nevertheless, it was STILL the best camping trip I have ever had.

I wouldn’t change a thing.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s