Tuesday, July 1, 2008

And We're Back!

We're back from our camping trip to Lake George! Lots of fun, lots of rain, and more than our fair share of whining (our oldest daughter's...)! My aunt was already talking to all of us about doing the same thing next year, and my husband said that he was sure by next year he would be ready, but don't ask him in the next month!

Don't get me wrong, it was great to get away, great to get to see the family, but it's always difficult to break your routine when you have a little one. Our littlest one is a WONDERFUL sleeper -- at home, in her own bed, in her own room. VERY difficult time sleeping in the pack 'n play that we brought! It's definitely smaller than her crib, and our first night back at home, I peeked in at her and she was sleeping with her legs stretched out prefectly straight, and her arms out straight over her head -- she was certainly enjoying having more room! We rented a 30' RV and it was DEFINITELY the right decision for our little family! My aunts had teased me about not tenting, saying that they had taken their kids tenting when they were small, but I had dreaded the thought of us being rained on all weekend, and stuck in a tent with two energetic kids! Talk about a premonition! It rained -- HARD -- every single day we were on vacation. (And my poor aunt and my cousin and his girlfriend who were in tents were SOAKED at least two of the nights!)

Fortunately, it didn't rain every minute of every day -- the kids were able to go swimming, run around with their cousins (squirting each other with water pistols -- honestly, they were SO waterlogged by the end of this trip!). We had campfires almost every night, and got to sit around and entertain each other with funny stories -- my girl LOVED that! We toasted marshmallows and made S'mores -- I was having flashbacks from my Girl Scout days! I even brought stuff to make "Banana Boats" on our last night, but the rain washed out our campfire. Banana Boats are another campfire recipe I learned in Girl Scouts, where you take a whole banana, with the skin on, and cut a slit through the skin into the banana. Then you open it up slightly and stick mini marshmallows and chocolate chips inside the banana, and wrap the whole thing in foil and stick it on the edge of the campfire until the marshmallows and chocolate melt. We didn't get a chance to make them, so I'm not sure if I would still find them as yummy as I did when I was a kid! (If we try it this summer, I'll let you know the verdict -- I'm thinking putting it over vanilla ice cream would be delicious!)

On our second day there, the four of us hopped back into the minivan and drove an hour or so up to Lake Placid, site of the 1980 "Miracle on Ice" when the US Olympic hockey team won against the Russian team. My husband was 13 when that game took place and he still gets goosebumps when he sees a clip of it. It was a dream come true for him to go to Lake Placid and to see where it all took place. I was the only one who fully grasped the importance of this moment for him, unfortunately, so we all had to endure some whining on the part of our 7 year old -- she was anxiously awaiting the arrival of her cousins, who were getting in later that day -- but she eventually got in the spirit. Hey, we are a hockey family, and this was the greatest hockey game in history!

One of the days my husband, cousins, and the older kids all went tubing (kids in life jackets, of course!) on the river that we were camping on, and that was quite an adventure -- they were doing great until a sudden lightening storm came up and the guys quickly grabbed the kids and jumped out of the water and onto the embankment. At the first clap of thunder, my aunt and my cousin's wife jumped into their cars and went on a rescue mission -- my girl was a little scared at the time, but after a warm shower she was writing a story about her adventure. That will definitely be one for our end of summer collage! Every time our phone has rung since we've been home she says, "Tell them about the tubing!!"

On our last afternoon / evening, there was a terrible downpour and the kids were all getting antsy (my two and my cousin's two -- 5 & 7), so I invited them all into our trailer and popped some microwave popcorn (I know, I know -- really roughing it!! But hey, we didn't have a phone, tv, or computer so that's roughing it a little!) and broke out our new game of Apples to Apples Kids (for ages 7 & up). The three older kids and I played, while my little one sat at the table with us coloring and laughing along with the rest of us -- really feeling like one of the big kids! This is a fun word game for anyone who isn't familiar with it. I had played the adult version (which I brought along and played later that night with my aunts and cousin-in-law) and while shopping on vacation I found the Kids version. We also had crayons, markers, paper, coloring books -- all sorts of things for rainy day entertainment! I was definitely mocked for the amount of stuff that I brought with me, but I find (especially with kids) that if you have room for it, you might as well bring it because it's better to have too much than too little! (I was that way with groceries too, by the way -- I shouldn't have to grocery shop for at least another week!)

We're settling in for a couple of weeks and then we are off to Long Island for my husband's family reunion -- it's a busy month!


Christine said...

Sounds like a great time! Good call on the camper! I think I would have done the same thing. Sleeping on the ground does not hold the same excitement that it once did!

Did you really bring too much food and stuff! I am TRULY SHOCKED!!! At least you have a nice big van to put it in!

Sounds like a really fun time though and I bet everyone was glad you had the camper when they got to come in out of the rain.

Deanna said...

Ok Miss Frugal, but I would like to say, that while I brought much more food than I needed, we will end up eating it. AND, you would have been proud of me, because we cooked a steak for dinner and didn't finish it, and the next morning for breakfast I made a steak and potato frittata for breakfast, using the leftover steak. AND, I had leftover chicken from foil dinner and since we had the fridge/freezer in the camper, I froze the leftover chicken and we will eat it later this week! (I thought you'd be proud!)

Yes, I feel the same about sleeping on the ground - the thrill is gone!