I am blessed to have Paul as my husband and the father of my children. He’s an amazing father – patient, kind, involved, and silly – and the best husband I could ever imagine. He is one of the reasons I consider myself “a lucky mama”.
To celebrate Paul, we went on an overnight camping trip. We did this a couple of years ago with Claire but didn’t get to go last year with Ren for various reasons. So this was the inaugural year for our camping trip as a family of four. It was also Ren’s first camping trip ever.
We chose to go to Rainbow Valley Campground, right within the city, because we had such a fun time there with Claire in 2008 and also because we’d be close to home in case of a rough night or something.
Leading up to the camping trip, I decided we needed goofy matching camping hats like I had as a kid in Brownies and Girl Guides: you know, the kind with badges and shrinky-dink things. The kids did shrinky-dinks to represent Rainbow Valley, our first stop on our camping adventures while I got some silly badges made that say, “The Yahoo Campers, Est.2010”. (It’s a long story, but we call ourselves Yahoos and our memory books are called “The Yahoo Chronicles”.)
Here’s Ren modelling his hat:
We made Jiffy Pop, roasted hot dogs and marshmallows, made s’mores and got belly aches.
The Jiffy Pop took a little longer than expected to pop. The kids got bored …
But it was joy all around when the popcorn was finally done!
The kids played with stones in lieu of toys and quickly made up a game that involved one presenting the other with the stone while the other would indicate his or her approval of the stone. Apparently it was a very fun game to play because it went on and on. They also entertained us by taking turns on some stumps. One child would introduce the other as the next “performer” and then Ren and Claire would take their turns showing us their respective Kung Fu and ballet moves. We played Old Maid, during which Paul was the only non-cheater. We walked down to the beaver dam we saw beavers making a couple of years ago (no sign of beavers this time). The kids hopped around in the tent and played “Mommy and Daddy”.
And finally, we went to bed. Claire actually wanted to go to sleep as early as 6 pm! I think she just wanted to play in the tent the entire time, without being coaxed out occasionally for food, bathroom breaks and games. When the kids did finally slip into their sleeping bags, they had a real lovefest. First they held hands, then hugged and as a last lovey-dovey touch, Ren leaned over and kissed Claire’s head! I missed that moment with the camera but managed to capture an earlier one:
All in all, it was another awesome little camping trip, and we can’t wait for our next opportunity to camp!
(More pics to follow later.)