Family Camping Trip 2015

I had really been craving a vacation with just our little family. I realized earlier this year that all of our vacations have been going to visit our extended family. Which I love doing, don’t get me wrong, but I was just really ready for some intimate family bonding time. We don’t get enough time to just ourselves, so I really wanted to make this camping trip happen.

We arrived as it was getting dark and I didn’t get any pictures that first night. So starting with breakfast the next morning. We had a great start to our day with delicious pancakes and sausage. DSC_4363-1These boys are ALWAYS play fighting!! So of course I have to document it. Some parents I know don’t allow their boys to do this, but I say they’ve just got to get it out of their system and as long as they’re having fun they can keep going. The things they imagine and the stories they create while doing it, as well as the brotherly bonding, is in my opinion, far and beyond well worth the tears that sometimes come. DSC_4372-2 DSC_4373-3 DSC_4374-4 DSC_4377-5 DSC_4378-6 DSC_4379-7 DSC_4383-8 DSC_4385-9 DSC_4387-10 DSC_4389-11 DSC_4391-12 DSC_4393-13 DSC_4396-14  Picking flowers for his Mama. My boys do this regularly, I hope they never stop.

DSC_4400-15 DSC_4406-16 DSC_4412-3 DSC_4419-18 These dry weeds looked really ugly while walking past them, but I knew that if I got low and could see the light coming through from behind, they would just glow. Light can make anything beautiful.DSC_4436-19Which way? DSC_4446-20    Taking a rest.DSC_4447-21Catching up DSC_4449-22 DSC_4450-23

These flowers were giving him a terrible runny nose, but he refused to let go of them and carried them during most of the hike.
DSC_4454-24DSC_4488-4DSC_4483-25  DSC_4487-27The pointer was occupied 🙂 DSC_4486-26DSC_4489-28 DSC_4495-29 DSC_4502-30 DSC_4507-31 DSC_4511-32 DSC_4514-33Run! The DADDY’s coming!!!                          DSC_4518-34 DSC_4519-35 DSC_4526-36 DSC_4528-37 DSC_4530-38 DSC_4536-39 DSC_4545-40 DSC_4546-41We chose this camp site because they have kayaks for all the campers to use. You can’t take them very far, but it was still fun to paddle around with the kids. DSC_4568-42 DSC_4571-43 DSC_4573-44 DSC_4594-47DSC_4576-45  DSC_4599-48 DSC_4601-49 DSC_4618-50DSC_4584-3DSC_4591-46 Dinner Time! There was a forest fire in the nearby mountains so we didn’t light a fire in the pit. My awesome stud muffin hubby made us a yummy dinner of spaghetti and little smokies on our cook stove.DSC_4622-51 DSC_4646-56DSC_4651-59Those little dimples in his smile lines just kill me.DSC_4628-53 We played a game of cards while we waited for the food. The game was “Go Fish,” but we had face cards with dollar bills on the backs so we called it “Pay Day” instead. I loved hearing the kids say “Have a pay day!!”DSC_4632-54My man totally did all the work on the trip. He prepared all the meals, set up camp, packed the car, made the plans, etc, etc, and let me sit back and photograph it all. It was fabulous.  DSC_4637-55  DSC_4623-52   DSC_4653-60 That face is looking too serious, and makes me realize he’s growing up, however there was A LOT of boy silliness going on. He probably said  “21 FART GUN SALUTE!” (from Despicable Me) about 1,000 times!DSC_4648-57More boy silliness…. DSC_4649-58 DSC_4661-3Kyler loves all things mechanical and loved getting the responsibility of shutting off and putting away the cook stove. With supervision, of course. DSC_4660-2DSC_4655-61The wonder that this sweet boy of mine has for God’s littlest creations just astounds me. And humbles me. There is a reason Jesus Christ said we must become as a child in order to enter the kingdom of heaven.DSC_4665copy We were close to a small town with a little theater so we decided to spend our evening at their once-a-day showing, which happened to be Ant Man, a show ALL the boys wanted to see. I don’t know who was more excited, Daddy or the boys. They share a love of comic book heros. It was so fun to go to a movie while on our camping trip. And this old theater was decked out in 50’s Hollywood red carpet style decor which made it extra fun.DSC_4672-62The next morning the reading of Narnia began at the crack of dawn. These two can’t get enough of their books together. I never thought I’d find someone who liked to read more than I do, but I sure did in this man, and I love that he’s passing on this love of books on to both of our boys.                                                        DSC_4675-1 Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.DSC_4680-2 DSC_4725-12 Morning view from the tent. The smoke in the air from the forest fires made it extra smoggy. And I just realized that’s probably a conjunction of the words smoke and foggy. Huh. DSC_4687-4 DSC_4689-5I’m not usually an early riser, and I usually sleep very deeply and never wake up during the night, except while camping. I was awake probably every hour, worrying about my babies being warm enough, finally pulling Jace into my sleeping bag; listening to the cars on the nearby road; and not getting comfortable on my pad on the ground. So I got up early and got out to take some morning photos with this gorgeous smoggy light. And it made me wish I was more of a morning person. Morning light is so dreamy! The tall grass just dripped with golden light!

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These are some of my favorite nature shots ever. I love the colors and the light and the crispness, I’ve already printed a couple, including this one. These just make me happy. DSC_4721-11 DSC_4685-3DSC_4730-13 DSC_4733-15 DSC_4737-16After our breakfast of muffins, Daddy cut some cattails down and an epic cattail sword fight ensued. Here’s Kyler’s photography of the cattails. I like the lines 🙂  He also took the one of Jace and I above. He’s good, huh!?DSC_4738-17 DSC_4740-18 DSC_4744-21 DSC_4742-19 DSC_4743-20Who says I can’t play and take pictures at the same time?
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We packed up camp and then stopped at this playground we saw on the way in. DSC_4750-23 DSC_4753-24 DSC_4757-25 DSC_4758-26 DSC_4759-27 DSC_4760-28

This trip may seem short and insignificant, but I feel it’s one that our kids will always remember. I certainly will. It was exactly what we needed. I love my sweet little family and will always cherish these precious times with them. I love getting to be a part of their childhood, part of the fabric that makes up who they are. It’s such an honor and an intimidating prospect at the same time. These humans are my responsibility, which is both daunting and amazing. I fear it and love it and the same time. One thing is for certain though. This is what I was made for.

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