so we tried it again

We tried camping.  It was kind of a matter of honor, just because of what happened last year.  But last year we had a lot working against us:  Graham was still in a crib, the kids had never slept in the same room together (let alone a tent), Graham still needed a nap, it was a million trillion degrees.

This year we had a lot working for us: Graham is in a regular bed, the kids are expert travelers, missing a nap doesn’t lead to the apocalypse.  But it was still a million trillion degrees.

So when the boy woke up at 1:30 a.m. he was hot.  Very hot.  And pissed.  And confused.  There was a lot of screaming and rearranging and screaming and changing tents and screaming and offers to leave and screaming and peeing in the woods and screaming.  Things finally settled down around 2:30.

At 7 a.m. the mamas and kids were back home eating breakfast.  The dads, thankfully, cleaned up camp.  All in all it was an improvement.  And we learned that camping can be done.  It will just NEVER be done during the Texas summer again.  As with gardening, I’ve learned my lesson.

But all of this has made me homesick; homesick for “real” camping.  I mean the camping I remember as a kid: smelling the pine forests, following deer trails, throwing lava rocks into clear streams to see if they float, actually needing a fire during the chilly evenings.  But here we have Texas camping; getting stabbed by pointy plants, unable to veer off the path for fear of scorpions and poisonous snakes (we’ve got them all!), watching for water moccasins in murky streams, no campfire because of drought-induced burn bans.  It’s just not what I’m used to growing up in the Northwest.  And I wish I could experience NW camping with Violet and Graham.

So we’ll try winter camping here in Texas.  Or spring camping.  I’m sure it has its charms.  And maybe my kids will love their own camping memories:  hiding cactus in each other’s sleeping bags, snake scavenger hunts, tossing scorpions in the river to see if they float, etc…

5 responses to “so we tried it again”

  1. Granny/Mom

    Cheris, all of those things (an others) were present in the NW. You just don’t remember cuz you were the child. Create your own wonderful times and stop comparing…it will drive you crazy. This is Graham’s and Violet’s childhood. Make it special for them where they are. It can be lovely!

  2. Amber

    I was just thinking the other day about that trip we did, forever ago, hiking up in the Sisters (I think) – it was summer, but there was tons of snow, we glisaded down glaciers and swam in ice water – and didn’t you fall in a tree well on the hike in? No snakes, or cacti, or scorpions – just hypothermia, snow blindness and attack tree wells (though none of those as scary as the dreaded cousin Amber). Eh, pick your poison – and lets go camping while you are here in August …

  3. Amber

    I also always think of you when I get a funny sunburn – I think we were camping near the coast, playing in a river and decided to apply clay/mud war paint in fantastic designs and then leave it on for hours while we frolicked in the sun. If I remember correctly, your dad got to go back to work looking like a bad Hollywood version of an Indian Chief.

  4. Cecil

    One of my favorite camping memories was the time we all went to Trinity Lakes. Your family had Nance’s old VW bus, and we had the Landcruiser…there was a bit of ‘screaming ‘ but that was just me trying to keep Lindsey from dangling by her knees off the catwalk of Trinity Lookout! Along with the glimmer of a gazillion blue dragonflies at the edge of the lake, and the glow of campfire, there were also a million hungry mosquitoes, dirt in everything we ate, and very little sleep!
    Thanks for being part of MY memory bank, Sweetie…keep trying…some day Violet and Graham will retell the story of your recent trip as a grand adventure full of drama and intrigue!!

  5. Gramma Lifford

    I guess camping has its pleasures but this city “girl” will NEVER go camping. Please, please, please do not plan a camping adventure on of my quarterly visits!

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