family camping

family camping

Back in February, we (my sister, my friend Kristyn, and myself) agreed that we would take a camping trip this spring. Being the planner that I am, I researched a few options and decided upon a local campground where we spent many summers as girls. We hadn’t been there in twenty years and returning after all this time filled me with a joy & nostalgia that brought tears to my eyes. Most fascinating & wonderful of all, is the fact that the place hasn’t changed a bit! It’s like a magic place where time stands still. I was so happy to re-discover it.

After the long, terrible winter — and after all of the challenges that my family has seen this past year — this trip was a beautiful, magical breath of fresh air. It was everything that we needed and more. I could go on and on about it, but I’ll let the photographs do the talking. I’ll weave a few stories throughout.

Day 1

family camping

family camping

I don’t have any shots from the night that we arrived because we were running late and didn’t arrive until 7 pm. Plus, it torrentially poured that first night. We stayed in our cabin, ate pasta salad, drank beer & wine and talked into the night. Because of the anxiety of packing, traveling, and arriving — I didn’t sleep much that night. I woke up frazzled & foggy on that first day, but it turned out to be lovely. It rained on and off throughout the day, but the sun always came out at just the right times.

family camping

We stayed in two little cabins — my family & Kristyn in one and my sister’s family in the other. We had the whole site to ourselves which was lovely and allowed us free reign over the grill & fire pit.

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The beach and boating dock were just a minute’s walk from our site.

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^^^ My new favourite picture of us. ♥ ^^^

family camping

family camping

family camping

We saw lots of wildlife on the trip — all kinds of insects & spiders, snakes, frogs, chipmunks, raccoons, and turtles. Luckily we didn’t see any bears.

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Matthew was happily in charge of firewood and campfires. He and my sisters fiance, Brian, took turns being grill master.

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family camping

All of the rains stranded thousands of tadpoles in little gullies along the beach. My sister and little Brian worked to save as many as they could and set them back into the lake.

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^^^ A very curious little camper, indeed ^^^

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family camping

We didn’t see any beaver on our trip, but their handiwork was evident. It was fascinating to see the beaver-chewed trees, you could even see their teethmarks in the wood! I had never seen this in-person before.

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family camping

On the evening of our first full day, we had chicken/shrimp/veggie kabobs for supper along with sides of corn and pasta salad. I had prepared all of the kabob ingredients at home before we left and all we had to do was warm them up on the grill. It was the perfect camping food and I’ll do a how-to post soon.family camping

family camping

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After dinner, and more rain, the skies cleared. We roasted s’mores over the campfire and took a walk down to the lake.

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Little Brian was the best fisherman of the bunch.

family camping

Day 2

family camping

When we woke up on the morning of the second day, the sun was shining and the air had begun to warm. It was a perfect day for camping.

One of the things that surprised and delighted me throughout the trip was Roman’s behavior. I knew that he was going to love camping — the outdoors and his cousins are two of his favourite things — but I didn’t know just how much he would love it. That boy was in his element for sure.

Leading up to our trip, I was worried about whether or not he would sleep. It was only his second time sleeping away from home (the first time he was just three-months-old) and he never sleeps anywhere other than in his car seat or his crib. So, I didn’t know what to expect. Truth-be-told, I was terrified. Alas, I had nothing to worry about. He slept like a champ! He went down for all of his naps and slept through the night with an occasional midnight nursing. I’ll write more about tips for getting baby to sleep away from home soon.

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family camping

^^^ Here we are, the whole gang! ^^^

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^^^ my favourite camp-themed bunting from birdie baby boutique ^^^

family camping

family camping

I brought along prizes for my nephew Brian for each day. One day it was a ping-pong set, one day it was sidewalk chalk, and one day it was a jumping frogs game. Brian is five-years-old and for four years, he was the only child in our family. Adjusting to having his baby brother, Aden, and his baby cousin, Roman, around has been tough on him at times. I love to encourage his good behavior with little treats and also to remind him how special he is, too.

family camping

family camping

On this afternoon, M., Big Brian, and Little Brian went out on a row boat to do some fishing. They caught a few fish, but their most exciting catch of the day was a giant snapping turtle! It swam up to the boat, attacked the oars, and got its front paw stuck on a fishing hook! Unsure of what else to do, the guys towed him in toward shore. When one of the lifeguards saw what was happening, she said, “That’s old Lockjaw!” Apparently this snapping turtle is famous around these parts. The boys were thrilled and didn’t stop talking about Lockjaw for the rest of the trip.

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family campingWe put the little boys in their pajamas and headed out for a sunset/twilight stroll.

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Day 3

family camping

The third day was the most gorgeous day weather-wise. The temperature went up to the low eighties and it was perfect for the sun, sand, and water. My sister and her crew packed up early & headed out to attend a barbecue elsewhere. We stayed on to bring Roman to the beach for his first play in the sand and dip in the water. It was so exciting and definitely a highlight of the trip for me and M. We’ve long been looking forward to putting Roman in the water. He enjoys bath time so much and we’ve wondered how he would do in “big” water.

I placed him down at the water’s edge and waited to see what he would do. He took off like a bolt of lightning straight into the water, headfirst. He loved it. He splashed and giggled and loved every moment.

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All in all, it was one of the best trips of my life. I am so grateful to get to experience the magic of the world again, and this time with my little boy by my side. I am also grateful to have such an amazing group of family & friends to cherish these memories with. I can’t wait to do it again.


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11 thoughts on “Family Camping”

  1. These pictures are beautiful! I especially love the one of just you! So pretty mama! These photos got me excited for our camping trip in a few weeks! So glad you guys had such a great time!

  2. What a magical trip! You seriously look so happy and at peace, ‘specially in the photo of you and Roman.

    I love the campsite too! I never did much camping out in the west coast and if we did it was in the desert and swimming was at the ocean beach. I’m not used to lush forests with lakes and their sandy beaches that you find on the east coast. You’ve definitely got me jonesing to go camping now!

  3. It looks like you guys had so much fun, I’m so glad the trip went well for you, especially with everything you’ve been dealing with the past few months.

  4. Such a wonderful post. Thank you so much for linking up to Lets Have An Adventure! Your photos are a delight and what a wonderful trip. Love it x

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