i used to go camping with my family every summer when i was younger. we always picked a campground by a beach somewhere, and we'd just hang out and cook and eat and play games. it was a fun time, and we all looked forward to it every year. when the teen was born, she joined in and it got even more fun.
and then the wheels fell off of my camping wagon and i found myself heading out for just one night instead of two. and then it turned into just a visit for a few hours, and eventually i just skipped it altogether. the teen continued to go with my cousins for a couple of years before she decided she wasn't into it anymore either. and then, of course, the fallout with a chunk of my family (who was always in charge and very present during these campouts) pretty much cemented my stance on not attending ever again. as much fun as it used to be, and with as many wonderful memories i have of those trips, i just don't see it happening again.
but that doesn't stop us from planning our own camping trips. and when i mentioned it at the dinner table one night, the suggestion was met with plenty of enthusiasm. we schemed to fly MIL out for the excursion, and the teen was excited to bring BFF rock-ell too. of course, summer was well underway by then and it was pretty tough to find a site that was still available during the week that we wanted to go. but you know me - i don't give up easily. and my tenacity paid off. because after registration at the teen's school a week before the new year started, we packed up the car and pulled in here:
we drove around a little to check out what was still available, and picked out the perfect spot. this was home for two nights:
and why was it so awesome? well, it was about a 10-second walk to the important stuff.
the bean was excited to finally be camping. she explored our surroundings, chased the birds, and then plopped down onto a chair to watch the hub put up the tent.
and when it was finally ready, she ran right in to check it out.
the teen scared the shit out of me as i walked up and saw this:
speaking of the teen, check out her purple-tipped 'do:
we'd decided to grab dinner somewhere nearby instead of busting out the BBQ, and at the suggestion of the ranger in the check-in booth ended up at some joint at the nearby harbor. it was super overpriced and not so delicious, but at least two of us were happy with it:
back at the campsite, the hub put a couple of duraflames in the BBQ and handed us the bags of marshmallows. i'm sure you won't be shocked when i tell you that roasting marshmallows is THE best part of camping for me. i could seriously go through a bag all by myself. i don't even require the chocolate and graham crackers, although the others were definitely down for s'mores.
it was wonderfully chilly, and we sat around the fire in our sweats and hoodies. definitely the most awesome, delicious, very best way to kick off a camping trip