It’s something I’ve wanted to do with Braden since he got here. Take him camping. I know his first summer at 5-7 months old he would have been great! We even had the trip booked…but it rained so we cancelled. That summer it didn’t really get nice until August. Last year, he was 16-18 months old and there was NO WAY I was taking that hooligan camping! That still marks the “worst” age and stage we’ve ever been through with Braden. Not old enough to listen, yet completely marching to the beat of his own drum. Did not want to sit still for a minute to eat and constantly running away – ACK! Anywho, we booked a Sunday night, Monday night trip to a campground only 1.5 hours away with a big lake…this way we could stay cool with the heat wave and the family could meet us there with the boat! (Andplusalso we could bail at any time and take the short drive home!)
The kids all had a lot of fun, everyone went tubing, and Kihei was SO well behaved. Jay had to really encourage her to come and cool down in the lake…she is not a water dog by nature!
I love our family pictures! The progression of Braden NOT wanting to stop his fun to take a picture and Kihei obsessively staring at a chocolate lab hoping we’ll let her go and play with it! The family came to our campsite for supper.
Then we were on our own. It was hot. I mean, really hot. 32C which is about 90F. We only get maybe 5 days in the 30’s all summer if we’re “lucky”. It’s just too hot for most Albertans, we’re not climatized to the heat and humidity like that! Here’s a summary of our evening/night:
- Braden had been very excited to sleep in his Special Camping Bed….until it was time to sleep. No nap and a bedtime of 9PM, 2 hours later than usual and the kid was READY for bed yet tried to protest the same
- 2 stories and 2 songs later, I laid with him as he was fussing, rubbed his back and he was out
- 1:30AM I hear him cry out…but he settles
- 1:45AM full on crying and calling out for me, I go down to settle him
- Sing him songs, rub his back…nope! He wants to go play outside, he thinks this 4.5 hour “sleep” is it and it’s time to go!
- I try lying with him, he says “Mommy go!” but then fusses as soon as I try and settle back in our bed
- I try letting him play with the iPad
- Jay steps in around 3:30 and I believe by 4AM we were all finally sleeping again
- Braden is not the kind of kid that has ever been able to sleep with us, so I was shocked to see the boys sleeping together when I got up in the morning
I didn’t take any pictures of us playing in the lake, because I was hot, tired and didn’t want to lug around my DSLR in the sun/water. Braden had a wonderful, wonderful time and finally has the attention span to stay at the beach and play. When we went to Maui 6 months ago…not so much! We came back to our campsite, had lunch, Jay and I talked it over and were luckily on the same wavelength and decided that after Braden’s nap…we’d pack up and leave. It was just TOO HOT, no A/C in the trailer, and we really didn’t want to risk another sleepless night for all 3 of us. So I put Braden down for his nap shortly after 12, I ended up falling asleep with him for THREE HOURS which I couldn’t believe, he slept for 1 more hour as we packed and cleaned up…and then we were ready to hit the road.
|TOO hot to camp for our Albertan butts!|
But our “fun” wasn’t over yet. Jay’s truck has always had a problem with the coolant…so sure enough, a few minutes on the highway out of the town we camped at…Jay’s truck is overheating and we’re pulled over on the highway. The truck is spewing steam everywhere and Jay got a jug of coolant in it and we barely made it back to town. God was good to us that day, there was a gas station for Jay to buy coolant, a McDonald’s with an air conditioned play place for me and Braden to kill time, and a nice, shady tree for Kihei to stay cool under. 1.5 hours later, the truck had cooled down enough and we made it, by the grace of God, back home the 1.5 hour drive.
That was a lot of work to go camping for 1 day and 1 night! BUT, we learned a ton, I know what more to expect next time we go and we will never go during a heat wave even though the really nice, sunny weather seemed appealing at the time. We’re sure learning a lot about family trips!! You gotta learn one way or the other, right?! It kind of felt like a Griswold camping trip, but it’s one to remember forever!