The weirdest storm is going on right now. It was a super hot day (30s with high humidity); one that you just know is going to end with a storm. The sky got dark and sinister, and the lightning and rain started when I left Polo Park after a few errands. Then it started to clear up (complete with a double rainbow that's all over instagram) and now it's dark again except for clear sky way in the west.
If you didn't come here for the weather report, read on.
Our annual Rushing River camping trip followed very closely on the heels of our annual Andy Lake week. Since that's probably all the holiday-ing we'll be doing this summer, it was a little more condensed than I would have liked. However, we skipped Rushing River last year and this year's booking was made pretty last-minute, so I feel very lucky that we were able to do it at all.
Sadly Chloe couldn't come this year. We are navigating a new phase - caught between the kid we still want her to be and the independent adult she wants (and needs) to be. She had her own adventure this weekend - a trip to Wisconsin Dells with Bailey and Tia. I'm proud of them all - three young(ish) girls driving on interstates and figuring things out on their own. Expired passports and spending the night in the van? No problem - these girls rose up to the challenge!
Back to our less adventurous weekend. I took very few pictures because I felt like they would be the same as the other years. Now I wish I had taken more. We had beautiful weather, great campsites right on the water, and lots of food and friends and fun. We went swimming and canoed to different islands. The canoe we rented this year felt super tippy and the kids felt anxious, so after we unloaded the kids and towels at an island, Dale and I set out to prove that the canoe wasn't as tippy as it felt. We were wrong. Both of us just leaned slightly to the left and instantly we were in the water. And then the canoe started to sink; luckily we were close to the island and could drag it there pretty easily. Later, when we left the island, Neve was sitting on the floor of the canoe and shifted her weight slightly. We were so close to tipping again that we took on water. We were very still for the rest of the paddle home. No one even dared to cough. I know canoes aren't the most sturdy of watercraft, but this was ridiculous. I feel like the canoe factory's testing process could be improved. Too bad we didn't get all of that on film.
As the children get older, things have changed. The girls used to play Barbies and mermaids the entire weekend. The boys ran around the campground and swam and played. This year the girls did gymnastics on the play structure and the boys played board games and read. I kind of miss the old days but it sure is nice that they can pack and shower and go to the bathroom by themselves. Our conversations and fun around the fire have also evolved. Justin Bieber is no longer the villain in every single one of the campfire stories. But still. The good old days were pretty sweet too.
|The wrapped gift underneath the mini cake stand is a young adult romance book that I meant to give Chloe. She got the humourous book on parenting that I meant to give to Blake. oops.|
I say this every single year (see previous blog entries for proof) but NEXT year we will have a tent trailer instead of a tent. The problem is we always forget about it until right before we go camping the next year and it's hard to buy a camper and get a hitch on the van the day before we leave. We tried. I feel like we may have missed the boat on the camper, with Chloe unlikely to camp with us much and Spencer not far behind. But we love our annual camping trip so much and we'd camp more if we had a trailer (right?!). I feel like I'm getting too old to sleep on an air mattress three nights in a row. A guy across our back lane has trailers available to rent so we might just go that route. Stay tuned for what happens next year. (Spoiler: we'll probably still be in a tent.)