It has been a few weeks since I have had time for my weekly Storyworth prompt. I took the first baby to college, and I have been super busy writing curriculum for the new youth programming initiative with Beautiful Together. But the Storyworth prompt about camping memories brought back SO many memories, I had to take some time to write about them.
I think we got our pop-up camper around 2011 when Aidan was in 1st grade and Samantha was in Kindergarten. We had so many good memories with that camper until we sold it the year Aidan started driving (we needed the space in the driveway for the extra car). By then, the teenagers no longer wanted to camp with us, understandably, so it made sense. But so many memories. Here are some of the best.
The time Aidan left snacks on the picnic table and Samantha and I woke up to Ricky Raccoon having a wonderful snack with creepy looking eyes from the shine of the flashlight.
The giant catfish two ladies let Aidan reel in at Badin Lake. They said his face made their entire camping trip.
The long hike on the Virginia Creeper Trail where Smooch barked at a giant kid in a stroller (he was WAY too big for a stroller but Smooch was the only one brave enough to call him on it!)
The time we lost Aidan, Samantha and friend Sam in the campgrounds. I drove around and around all the loops asking if folks had seen 3 kids on scooters. Super grateful no true crime podcast was made after that trip.
Our first camping trip when I shared we were camping “in the mountains” but had no cell service the entire weekend. Again grateful for no true crime podcast following that trip.
The Carolina beach trip where we saw the most amazing birds.
The lake trip where we all woke up to the party boat belting out “Hip hop, hurray!”
The trip I went to bed with Aidan at sunset when he ate an entire bag of Takis. Mama had to rub that tummy all night.
Our tradition was to get a bumper sticker from every place we camped. By the time we sold the camper, the rear of the trailer was covered in white oval circles.
We never mastered the back-in at campsites, but I am proud that other campers were impressed with our fast pop-up style. We were always sweaty but LOVED the compliments. In the end, I think we used our inability to back in as a set up strategy. Camping brought us so many memories. I cannot wait for the new memories from our next phase of life…. the Empty Nesters Version of Camping. Our original plan was to gift ourselves at Ram Promaster Sprinter Van for our 20th wedding anniversary / my 50th birthday. I was looking into financing options when our 15 year old heat pump died. So financing that un fun household purchase will need to come first…. Boo!