Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Camping extras

So this weekend of camping was sort of a first for us.  We had been camping years and years and years ago, but we had not taken the kids camping--and they've been begging us to for quite a while.  When friends mentioned that they were planning a final camping trip of the year, we asked if we could crash their family party.  It ended up being a win-win--we took the kids camping PLUS, all the kids were happy to have friends to play with for the weekend.  Likewise, the adults had a nice time hanging out (our version of playing), as well.

The numbers post from yesterday was inspired by the fact that during the weekend we celebrated Riley's 14th birthday.  But of course, there were a ton more pictures, so here's a follow up post with some photos of more of the fun we had.

So, in no particular order and with brief commentary following each, here's our weekend in pictures:

The two little girls loving on the dog--it's a shame he's never petted or loved on

We hardly saw these two--they really only emerged for food.  We had a small tent for them to play in, and they pretty much did just that.  There was a stack of papers at the end of the weekend of all their hard "work"

When the boys weren't chopping wood or ripsticking, they were often shaving off ends of sticks into swords and knives

Cory caught three fish on Sunday--look at that happy smile. 
Ted got each of the boys a flint and steel tool--they LOVED making sparks and starting our fires for us.
We had a perfect view of this beautiful tree decked in gold

Waiting for Daddy to bait the hook

Ahhhhh--a camp chair without a soccer game.  Now that's pleasant

Our friends had all the supplies we needed for cooking good eats.  And we did just that--we had chili, fajitas and black bean soup for dinners--not to mention the desserts of cobbler, nutella and jam pies, and roasted marshmallows

Did I mention the fajitas?  Here's the steak going on the grate

The cobbler I found on the internet was fantastically good, cooked over and under coals in the dutch oven

Unfortunately, the weekend was not without tears--poor kid burned her tongue on hot apple cider.  On her birthday no less.  So sad--yet Smiley Riley even smiles while she cries.

Nighttime fires are one of the best parts of camping, no?

The girl and her dog

Another girl and her dog--we are always catching Lucy snuggling and taking care of the dog.  We are so glad she loves him, because she really wants a cat.

This picture is especially for Pa G--who loves watching squirrels.  Nickleby was dying to chase the squirrels, by the way.

The state park we were at had a lake with a sandy beach to play on--guess where we were a lot?

Bent down digging in the sand, I'm sure

Wading in the water--they said it wasn't too cold "once you got used to it." 

Baths were required after this--and I think those white leggings are now permanently brown.

I kept hearing things like "Come to our spa!" from these two...Umm, no.  Thanks, but no thanks.

Here's our humble tent (with two towels drying).  It will sleep up to 8 and arrived the day before we left--thank you Amazon Prime

Look who's hoping for some goodies--he was caught table surfing a couple of times.  Notice the stack of snack bins--those are rice krispie treats, puppy chow and ranger cookies.  I told you we had good food.

The weekend wasn't all relaxation--we did have to wash dishes for 11 people after every meal.  But with so many people, we were able to spread the work out a bit.

Here's the whole group for you.

When we suggested a silly picture, one kid steped out--guess someone's not so silly.
As with most trips, there's usually one story that will not soon be forgotten.  For us it was the exploding egg.  After breakfast we had left a single egg in the middle of some coals--partly because it had cracked a bit, and since we didn't know how long it had been cracked, we weren't planning to cook and eat it.  After about an hour on the coals (and us pretty much forgetting about it), it had cooked so much that it exploded under the pressure.  It sounded like a gun.  The egg exploding was not big deal really--it just fell into the grass, and Nickleby loved eating it.  However, it also sent several pieces of coal shooting into the campsite.  And they left multiple holes in camp chairs, in tablecloths, and in the tarp that we were using as a shelter over the picnic tables.  Surprisingly, and thankfully, no tents or people were burned, even though some were sitting in the chairs and under the shelter.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Camp by Numbers

We spent a perfect weekend camping at beautiful Indian Lake State Park with some friends.  Here's our trip in numbers.

1 handsome guy who didn't have to shave for 4 days!  This is day 2

2 axes for the wood--the young boys had fun chopping wood for our fire

3 rip-sticks for kids to ride (or row) up and down the street

4 egg shells lined up in a row after frying a few for breakfast

5 shells found on the lake's beach

6 cans of Pringles--one for each member in our family so no one had to share

7 crazy kids--some obviously crazier than others!

8 bags of groceries

9 sticks for roasting marshmallows

10 marshmallows on one stick!

11 camp chairs around the fire

12 blankets to keep us warm as the nights dipped into the 40's

13 rods for catching fish.

14 years we've been blessed with this beautiful child

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Meet our new family member...

On his arrival day

And very soon after, he's already made himself completely at home!