July 19, 2016

6th Annual Camping Trip

This year's camping adventure was just outside of downtown Crouch and just over the fence from the Starlight Mountain Theater.  We had a giant campsite with shade just on the edges that we had to chase throughout the day.  We moved the chairs and picnic tables 3 times. River Pond Campground is run by an interesting old man, who takes cash and good checks. He gets around with his riding lawn mower and old golf cart.  There was a pond that was completely overgrown with plants, and the river that was shallow and perfect for wading. Here's a few of the highlight:

  • The McClures were the first to arrive.  Their tent was up and the kids had found a shady hideout to play in before anyone else showed up.  Bry and I-guy rode in the back of Grandpa and Grandma's car, with a big black storage bag on top.  The taller passengers had thick black straps obscuring their view or scrapping their heads. Thanks to Brent and Krystle for bringing up all of Bry's gear.  Everyone was loaded to overflowing.  Someone in this family needs to buy a big truck!  Brent, Krystle, and Joe were the last to arrive, but they made it well before dinner.
  • Grandpa and Grandma took a drive into town for ice and styrofoam cups.  Crouch has a new deluxe supermarket and a very nice park and library.
  • Both Mike and Grandpa hurt their backs earlier that day.  Ibuprofen for both of them, limited movement, and maybe a little less enthusiastic, but they were troopers.  
  • Stace made foil dinners with turkey burgers, veggies, rice, and a lot of cream of mushroom soup.  They were super delish!  Everyone cleaned their plates, even Maycee who had to be threatened with no s'mores.  Mike chowed down on a full pound patty with all the fixin's.
  • This year's s'mores featured Mounds, Reeses, and Hershey bars.  The marshmallows were giant and the kids were pro roasters.  Thanks, Bry!!!
  • We didn't need to sing around the campfire because we could hear the Starlight Mountain Theater production.
  • Krystle and Joe were the first to bed. We were low on firewood so we were all in bed by about 11:00 when the show was over.
  • Our only wildlife sighting was the little gray camp cat that hung around our campfire and was there to greet us in the morning.
  • Before breakfast, Grandpa, Grandma, and Hads took a trip to town for more firewood and another tank of propane for the stove.  (How could we bring so much stuff and be unprepared!)
  • Mike prepared hot chocolate for everyone and sliced up oranges.  Brent and Krystle brought everything for our breakfast featuring our traditional omelets in a bag.  Very tasty!  We tried monkey bread in the dutch oven, but it needed a sweeter dough, more butter, and much more cinnamon and sugar.  
  • The kids went on their treasure hunt.  There were 22 clues and it took about an hour. Besides candy, their treasure included big glasses, monster slingshot kites, necklaces to make, boats to build, and message in a bottle kits to record their memories of camping.
  • The adults sat around working on crossword puzzles and chatting.
  • Lunch was walking tacos, veggies and dip, and watermelon.  We had to move the kitchen from one side of the campsite to another just to stay in the shade.
  • Everyone except Mike (he took down the tent and loaded up) walked down to the river. The kids got wet, floated their boats, skipped rocks, and splashed around for slow-motion videos.
  • Brent, Krystle, and Joe headed home after the river.  This year's youngest, Joe, was amazing.  No crying, no fussing, just chill.
  • The rest of us headed to the ice cream parlor in Crouch.  That was a perfect ending to camping - sweet and refreshing.
And finally....I have pictures.

Youngest Camper - 4 months

4 more bites or you don't get s'mores

Happiest Camper

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