...and they all lived happily ever after...

...and they all lived happily ever after...

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Summer's last hurrah (for us)

This has been a summer full of outdoor adventures for our family, which is pretty much the way I like things (except for I hate sleeping on the ground...the good Lord invented mattresses for a reason).  In fact, this may have been my very favorite summer ever of my whole life.  I've loved spending so much time with my crew.

And so, since Josh has to start back to school this coming Monday (boo!), we decided on one more outdoor explore -- a long(er) explore -- to close out the season.

A camping trip.

So we headed toward Kamas, turned East toward Mirror Lake and kept our eye out for a home base for one last summer adventure.

And when we found this place we knew it was just the spot.

Ta Da!!

Some people were a little bit less help setting things up than others (we found these two rascals building dirt castles behind the tent).

But some people were lots of help and ended up tired from the endeavor.  Thanks people!

These two spent pretty much all the spare minutes messing around in the dirt.  It was great!  Notice how they've turned our Kubb set into a sweet little tower and array of digging implements.  I love a bit of creativity.

While Josh and I got everything set (you know, create the bathroom, dig out the mangled fire pit, etc) the kidlets ran around in the nearby woods with walkie talkies that my mom sent with us.  It got pretty wild...but that's the way of things when you're in the wilderness.

Also, Parker found a bunch of grass with frothy tops (like wheat...ish) so he decided to grind them into flour using some handy rocks.  I just love the things they think of.

Anyway, when camp was set we headed out to see what we could find.

I found this really fabulous dead tree.  I love it!  For real.  The kids were less impressed.

But Josh was the winner because he found the river (which was blocked by some nasty ol' stagnant ponds and pretty heinous drop offs in most spots, except for the little place he found).  He also managed to bring us through just at a quiet spot where a fairly deep little pond was formed so it was a good place to play for the afternoon.  Nice job, Joshua, I know when I am beaten.  I reluctantly will admit defeat.

Notice the photo bombing rock skips in the background on this one.  That was Bryce.

It really was a perfect afternoon.

And then it was time to head back to camp where we made dutch oven dinner.  We have really learned to love dutch oven cooking of late and do it here at home too (but let's be honest, everything tastes better when you are camping).

Ellie and Josh cutting vegetables for dinner.
 Near our camp site there was a wide, open field that was very accommodating for a game of kick ball and was also surrounded by logs and stumps which turned into a rousing game of "the ground is lava" a little later on (and I'm pretty sure I won). 

S'mores.  Songs.  Stories.  Star gazing.  Smoke in the face (just a bit).  

Trapped with a fire with my seven favorite people.


Everything was great until someone tipped Gavin's soggy shoe directly into the heat of the fire which (of coarse) melted the thing beyond repair leaving him shoeless.  Well, single shoed.  It sort of put a damper on our plans for the next day.  Can't have the kid hopping around on the rocky, uneven forest ground on one foot.

Oh well.

So, after a good night's sleep, a delicious breakfast (which included bacon so really it couldn't go wrong) and a great little demonstration about boiling water in a paper cup, it was time to pack up and go.

Water.  Paper cup.  Fire.  Booyah.
 And home we headed (after breaking down our camp, which is NEVER as fun as setting it up).

One last adventure for the books and one more memory for my crew.  It really has been an amazing summer.

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