i wanted to share more from our camping trip last weekend! i’ve said this before, but camping is near and dear to my heart because i grew up going often with my family since i was little and have the best memories from those experiences with my parents and siblings. josh and i had such a great time with the kids a few months ago on our one-night camping stay in moab utah, that we knew it was time to make this a bigger part of our life and family traditions in the coming months and years.
we found a great camp site up in the catskills where the surroundings were just breathtaking. the air was unbelievably delicious (is that obnoxious to say? haha! sorry, but it truly felt that way! maybe that’s just autumn weather in general with the crisper air and breeze though.) anyway, it was the perfect setting and season for a couple of nights outdoors. we weren’t entirely sure how long we’d last with the kids (staying flexible with the itinerary when we are away from home with the kiddos is how our trips remain fun and less stressful) but we arrived on friday afternoon and stayed through sunday morning, which felt like the perfect amount of time for a camping adventure, in my opinion.
sierra trading post kindly sent us some wonderful camping supplies for our trip, and since returning home to the city, we’ve been cleaning out a large amount of our closet space so we can give our new camping gear a good permanent home when it’s not being used in the great outdoors. their site is especially awesome when it comes to outdoor gear, because they offer a lot of the best brands at a big discount, often up to 70% off. we’ve also teamed up with them over on instagram today to giveaway $500 worth of gift cards to their site (a $100 gift card for you, and 4 $100 gift cards for four of your most adventurous friends as well! the more the merrier when it comes to camping, right?!) so head on over to my instagram to enter!
camping with kids is quite the adventure! eleanor and samson did such a great job, and i think it definitely helped that there were a lot of families camping around us so they made good friends with several little ones their age and were off exploring together like the cutest little pack of bears. we often had several extra kids from the camp around our table and campfire too, but mostly only because we had a lot of good snacks, like popcorn over the fire and endless s’mores. ;)
conrad did a great job camping too, considering he’s just nine months. camping isn’t always bliss when you’re sleeping on a thin pad and it’s cold or you’re trying to keep your 9 month old from putting rocks and sticks in his mouth every couple of seconds. but the many moments we had together that were hilarious and adventurous and fun and new most definitely outweigh any of those other harder moments by so much i don’t even know why we’d dwell on them.
this little mister gets a gold star for going with the flow so well. we’re still working on keeping hats on our head without screaming our faces off (lol. can’t wait to introduce and attempt to put mittens on this kiddo in a couple months) but we’ll get there i’m sure of it.
family photo! photo credit goes to little hank (a cute little boy who is “5 and a half and three quarters” and) who made friends with eleanor and samson since he was camping across the way from us with his family. he was very intrigued by my camera. and kept wanting to take photos! i love a young apprentice! haha!
for those who have asked about sleeping arrangements while camping, we used a smaller 3 person tent for our family of 5. the kids are still little and like to snuggle, so it was just right. ever so often at home, there are nights where all 5 of us somehow end up in our queen sized bed by morning, so you know, we’re used to the party! we got the kids smaller sleeping bags and used sleeping pads that were side by side for each of us (besides conrad who shared with me). we staggered bedtimes by putting conrad down first and then the older two afterwards. when conrad is beside me during the night, i keep my sleeping bag unzipped so it isn’t too constricting.
between samson and me alone, we devoured an entire box of graham crackers! he is my child and i love it!
josh made all our food. we fried up some steaks and french fries on the first night, then did a lot of bacon and eggs and pancakes in the mornings, chicken and dumplings, popped popcorn over the fire, and ate sandwiches and lots of fruits and vegetables and nuts for snacks. we also brought up cinnamon rolls to try over the campfire but never got around to them. they stayed cold in our cooler all weekend though so we enjoyed them back in the city once we got home.
off to the well to get some water for dish washing! also, please note how much samson LOVED washing our dishes during our stay! it was incredible. i think it’s mostly just the idea of using the sponge and getting to do it all by himself, but no way would we ever think to stop such a sweet act! by the way, this little collapsable portable sink made our dish washing experience a whole lot better. it was easy to carry water to our campsite with it, too.
you see what i’m talking about?! let’s hope he keeps this up for the next 15 years of his life. ;) and for all the years after that too!
i gladly drop everything i’m doing when this girly requests a braid. IT’S HAPPENING!!!!!!
always a little lady with those legs crossed. :)
and yes, it’s true. i’m wearing lipstick camping. you guys know i never leave home without my “pink me up” color. ;) haha! i was telling someone on instagram i apply it the way most people do chapstick. it’s my one thing. let me have my one thing!
bacon is always a good idea. but a great idea when it’s over a fire outside. we ate so much bacon, you guys.
i’ve learned to pick my battles with toddlers and dressing them. they are on the wrong feet, but you know. it’s how he wants it and we’ll all live.
our campsite was on such a beautiful pond! we took a canoe ride on saturday afternoon which was a lot of fun besides the fact that conrad hated it when he wasn’t perched over the side splashing in the water. haha! it reminded me so much of that time we were in venice italy on a gondola ride and eleanor was the exact same way about the water. that photo of her pouting in the gondola STILL cracks me up. poor girl.
sweetest moment of the trip, hands down. when eleanor started helping samson buckle his life jacket all on her own! these two, no matter how much they drive each other crazy, they sure do have each other’s backs. it makes me so so happy to witness this.
don’t be fooled, he still hated it. haha!
and i promise i am holding onto him ever soo tight!!! the canoe ride turned out being shorter than we expected thanks to this dude and his desire to splash like this or else scream in my lap. next time, next time.
popcorn over the open fire! we were most definitely popular with all the kids around the site when this happened. haha! we used this popcorn popper.
stories around the campfire staying up way past our bedtime!
and a puppet show in the tent with flashlights! haha!
you see what i mean about the shoe thing? picking my battles, picking my battles.
such a fun time. we want to try to go once more before it’s too cold this fall. do any of you have favorite spots to camp on the east coast? don’t forget to enter our instagram giveaway with sierra trading post today, too!