Monday, June 26, 2017

Summer Goals

For summer, I have two unofficial goals.

Goal #1: Graduate

Goal #2: Go "real" camping (as in two nights, minimum)

I'll spare you more talk of my graduation. I'm pretty sure you know it's happening since I mention it in almost every post.

The other goal was accomplished this past weekend. 

Here is a brief history of our camping efforts since having children:

Scotty and I camped a lot before we had kids. We imagined we'd be "camping with kids" people when the time came, but then reality gave us a swift kick in the pants. We are not "camping with kids" people, but we still have this delusion that we can become those people some day. That's why we continue putting our delusion to the test.

All camping trips have been one nighters. Most trips have resulted in children screaming through the night (this is obviously a problem when you are in a campground with other people), and most trips have involved at least one person getting sick (very often, it has been Zoe). To put it simply: camping with kids hasn't ever gone smoothly for us. 

But someday, maybe it will go great... Hence the two-night trial of his past weekend.

We left on Friday afternoon and stopped at one of our favorite pizza places on the way. About an hour before we left home, I got hit full-force with a really bad sore throat and body aches. I went down fast. By the time we were driving, I was completely miserable, and I didn't enjoy the pizza I'd been looking forward to because I felt like crap. 

(Also, please note that my butt is too wide for the seats at the pizza restaurant. This is very upsetting, and I feel like I need to write a letter to advocate for normal sized people everywhere)!

Anyway, I was able to scrounge up some 800 mg ibuprofen, which helped me feel a little better by the time we got to our campsite. 

The first night was peaceful, for the most part. We set up camp, lit a fire, and let the kids go s'more crazy.

Then we went to bed, and that's a whole other story. It was freezing, and the kids woke up off and on all night. Eva ended up in the sleeping bag with Scotty and me. I needed to pee like crazy, but there are many reasons I refused to get up and pee:

1. It was cold
2. The sound of the sleeping bag zipper might wake up the kids
3. The sound of the tent zipper might wake up the kids
4. It was cold
5. I was my underwear because Scotty promised me that the less clothing I wore, the warmer I would be in the sleeping bag (hmmm.....)
6. The bathrooms were far away
7. I might have gotten eaten by a rabid squirrel
8. It was cold
9. It was dark

So I held it.

For hours

I hardly slept. I am too old and fragile to sleep on the ground. The night was so long, and that rabid squirrel I mentioned? It wouldn't stop chittering. I wanted to stab it, but I couldn't leave the tent to stab the squirrel for many of the same reasons I couldn't leave the tent to pee. 

Much of the second day went well, but some things also went awry. We went to a nearby lake and walked about .2 miles before Eva threw herself on the ground and refused to move. 

Camping June 2017

Camping June 2017

I spent most of the day escorting Daisy and Zoe back and forth from the bathrooms. Daisy pees more than any creature on this earth.

Since I didn't sleep the first night, I ended up napping under a tree. Laying in pine needles is quite refreshing after sleeping on the hard ground. I didn't even mind the ants climbing all over me. 

While I was sleeping, Scotty walked with the kids down to the river to do some fishing. When I woke up, he was standing over me with a bloody head and ear. Apparently he fell into a tree, and just to make the experience all the more adventurous, he's also walked in poison ivy. His leg was covered in a red, burning rash. 

A few minutes later, a guy backed his car into our van. 

We had some good campfire cooking. Nicky warmed the leftover pizza, and we also made foil dinners.

Camping June 2017

Part of our reason for camping was to help Nicky finish passing off some Cub Scout requirements to earn his Webelos badge and his Arrow of Light. He had to start a fire without matches and cook two recipes over the fire without pots and pans.

Camping June 2017

Daisy also had a turn to start a fire without matches.

Camping June 2017

We played some games, and I taught Daisy how to do crossword puzzles. 

I tried to read my kids The Secret Garden. I had to explain what cholera is and why everyone in the beginning of the book is dying. Nicky thought this was horrible and doesn't know why anyone would read a book with people dying in it. This is another delusion I have - the delusion that I will be able to read books to my kids, and they will like them. Needless to say, they hated The Secret Garden, so I will be finishing it alone. 

(The little punks hate Harry Potter too. I can't win with them. They hate everything ).

The second night was even rougher than the first. My head and throat ached, and the urge to pee started earlier than it did the first night. I wore more clothing, but I still wasn't willing to get up to go to the bathroom until Zoe woke up at 6:00 and needed to go. 

Scotty eventually emerged from the tent and lit a fire. We had breakfast, and then I went nuts gathering everything up and loading the van. I went into "get me out of here" mode. I needed to go home and take a shower and lay in a real bed. Most of this need stemmed from how crappy I felt. Folks, camping while sick is miserable. I don't recommend it. 

Anyway, while I was scurrying about, I had Scotty's iPhone in my pocket. I bent over to put some duffel bags in the stow and go of our van, and the phone fell out and shattered. It was less than a month old.

We arrived home by 9:00 that morning.

Things didn't go very smoothly, but we did have some successes. The kids had a lot of fun, and that's what matters most. It wasn't easy, though. Holy moly. Camping with kids is hard. 

Camping June 2017