Lots of catching up. Actually an entire summer's worth of catching up. First, I'll start with our first ever outdoor camping trip, as in a real tent (not in our back yard) pretty much roughing it by our standards.
Our great friends are pros at this and have a camper they pull all over the place along with their 3 boys. They were the perfect fam to have our first real camping adventure with!
So off to Cutty's Creek in Coaldale, CO we went.
Legit dirt roads out in the sticks.
Home sweet home for 3 whole days. It was harder sleeping in a tent than I thought it would be (one that's not in your backyard- behind a safe fence). There's something about the thin paper walls and hearing everything crackle and seeing shadows-- then thinking about bears or other wilderness animals that freaked us out a bit. Now the kids slept like total logs every night!!! We might have logged a couple 4-5 hours each night. John said an animal brushed up against the tent our very last night around 3am. Needless to say he got up at 3am that morning... for the day.
The boys loved having the creek right in our backyard. Within the first 2 minutes of arriving they were all wading in the creek. Adrian lost his flip flop immediately. Thank goodness I brought him a pair of tennis shoes.
Mason was wet and muddy within about 5 minutes of waking up every morning and for most of the day. I had to get over my dirt phobia and learn to embrace dirt, mud and filthy kids :) and some flies. And I did! However, I kept the kids out of the tent most of the time and shoes never entered our new temporary home.
There were quiet hours at the camp until 8am. The kids were pretty good at being quiet until Mason would wake up and start tackling everyone.
Fire, and more fire. The kids loved playing in the fire, putting wood in the fire, making a fire and cooking and burning things. Anything really. They even found a dead mouse in our wood pile. We cremated the little guy (respectfully) but the kids were chanting a little or a lot. I'm pretty sure our camping neighbors were a tad leery of all 7 boys after that. Eeek.
We went on some cool hikes along the creek.
Doesn't this just make you want to chow down?!?!
Our first meal was a TOTAL bust! I felt bad. Our night to cook dinner and I got this pizza roll recipe on pinterest. I think it might have worked but we torched the snot out of them and super fast too. Charred to the point of black concrete on the outside and cold dough on the inside. We still scraped the insides and ate a tiny bit. We ate a lot of snacks that night.
This was my favorite pinterest idea. Our camping organizer. Came in handy too! Bug spray, wipes, soap, kleenex, toothbrushes, lotion, flash lights, first aid kit, baggies, it held a bunch of stuff.
Hanging out, getting smoke in our eyes, a bunch.
Doing dishes. Taking it waaaay back in the day. It was cool to live like that temporarily and rough it. Fun and carefree and we LOVED being unconnected-off grid for 99% of the trip. What-A-Change!!
We were blessed to have a pool on the premises :) Not "roughing" that part of our trip.
Boys, boys, boys.
They had a putt-putt course we tried out. Again, not "roughing" that part either.
And a little play town for the kids.
More fire :)
Our home. Our friends camper home. And a play tent for the boys where they could wear shoes in it and it was one filthy tent by the time they were done with it. It was a great idea for them to have their own little play place.
The kids made a river down the hill to the creek. Hours of entertainment!
The last night the boys had a movie night and watched E.T. at our place.
All in all we had a great first camping trip! We survived and we had fun too! We were hoping to fit another trip in but we'll probably have to wait until next year (at least for the whole fam) I'm not really into "cold" weather camping I don't think. John will probably be taking the boys for cub scouts and I'll just hold down the fort at home until another trip next summer :)