Every year, my son and I go camping. We used to have a BIG RV, then had a double wide trailer on a lot. I was happy to sell the RV because it was a lot of work for me with the just the 2 of us. And towing a car. Once I ended up on a dead-end street and had to call a tow truck to come unhitch the car, turn me around and hitch the car back up! Simply because I couldn't do ALL that and watch a 2 year old at the same time. OK, and I didn't really want to do all that. I was a bit sad to sell the trailer (which I la-la-loved), but when School Boy started kindergarten it didn't make sense anymore to pay for a seasonal lot, especially since my schedule is more toward the "shoulder" season. So, we downsized to tents a few years ago, are mobile, and hit the road at least once during the summer. Sometimes close to home, other times - a bit of a drive. This type of camping takes up ALOT of space in your car - air mattresses, sleeping bags, tents, dishes, coolers, all kinds of stuff. We are getting better and better at it though - we are pretty organized!
And it is a ton of work for me. I often think I am simply TOO tired to make the effort, but I know it is worth it. This summer, School Boy REALLY wanted to see his cousins. What is a Momma to do? So, I told him - yes, we could go, but he had to be good in the car and help around the campsite. It is a 12 hour trip, so being good in the car is important and he doesn't watch TV or read books in the car. Sleep is good though. Ummm, otherwise he is talking to me non-stops and expects me to answer.
And helping around the campsite? NO PROBLEM! At the age of 9 he is ALL about helping. Yup - it takes at least 3X longer to let him "help" and might involve spills or whatever, but that is ok. I give him lots of praise and he is happy, happy, happy to help. Makes my tea, washes the dishes, hauls the water, digs the trenches around the tents, etc. Basically, I just figure about 1/2 of our day will be around the campsite. Works for me. I actually read a novel! Wow!
I will write more later about our great week of camping. But I just wanted to add this - it POURED (and I mean buckets) 2X while we were there. And our LL Bean, King Pine Dome Tent (which I can't recommend enough!!!!) did not leak - not ONE drop. Seriously! Our picnic table tent is just meant as a cover. And our little tent is our "supply" tent that we keep our clothes, etc. inside of (packed in big plastic totes). The supply tent leaked a little bit. But the sleeping tent - got to love LL Bean (guaranteed not to leak). I was laying there, looking up at the rain fly and thinking - if that thing starts to leak, we are going to get soaked. I was wishing that maybe I had put up a rain tarp afterall. But it did NOT leak. Phew! The King Pine Dome tent is nice because it has a small screen "porch" on the front, which is great for keeping your chairs out from the weather overnight and an extra tote. The tent and our cookstove our the 2 most expensive items we have for camping - most everything else we pick up at the end of season sales. And goofy, little camping items make GREAT stocking stuffers.
So, that is an update. To be continued....