Monday, May 26, 2008

Our first camping trip with the kiddles...

Rob and I have decided that we have turned into a family of hermits as of late. Somewhere between the messy diapers and scrubbing toddler vomit up off the floor, we have lost our spontaneity and become boring and predictable. This is when we decided (spur of the moment) last weekend that we would take the kids camping! Amazing idea, right? It was 4:00 in the afternoon. The plan was to pack up the car, make a quick trip to Walmart for snacks, and be on the road arriving at our camp sight and making dinner by 7:00. We frantically ran around the house gathering sleeping bags, jackets, tents, coolers, and board games. I even whipped up a pasta salad in the packing frenzy! Feeling proud of our hurried accomplishment we loaded the kids in their car seats and sped off to Walmart (all the while pumping our kids up for the smores, songs, and games that awaited them). Never mind that it was 7:00 already. We weren't going to let this get us down! So the kids would stay up later than we had originally anticipated, big deal. We roll with the punches now with our knew found spontaneity and mad cap approach to life. An hour and six grocery bags of snacks later we were back on the road (no thanks to the painfully slow cotton headed customer in front of us in the checkout line who had coupons-a-plenty and wrote a CHECK to pay). Off to Mapleton Canyon! Rob had printed off Map Quest directions and I began to guide Rob to our destination. The directions led us right into a new developing neighborhood and we found ourselves on a dirt road with a sign which read "DEAD END". Good times. Still in good spirits, we turned around and began to search for an alternate rout. An hour later the sun had gone down and Maggie's voice shyly spoke up from the back seat..."Daddy? Are we lost?" I turned around to see a nervous Maggie and a past out Henry. "We lost one," I said to Rob in reference to the sleeping child. At this point we decided it might be better to go camping the next day instead (Saturday). We would just have to pack up early so that we could be on time to church. We told Maggie that we would go camping tomorrow and tonight we would go to Carl's Jr. playland instead (we wanted her to have something fun to do after dashing her little dreams of sleeping in a tent that night). So we get to Carl's Jr, wake up Henry and drag the disappointed little children inside only to see a ghetto, hand written sign on a dirty piece of card board hanging from the doorway of the playland..."Playland closed. Sorry for inconvenience". I growled a loud involuntary sigh which caught the attention of one of the workers. He shuffled over to us feeling as though he owed us an explanation. He mumbled in an annoyed teenage tone, "Ya, um, it's closed". Rob was in no mood for this kid's antics and said "Where is the sign with your playland hours?" (referring to a professional, permanent sign). The kid pointed at the piece of garbage dangling from the doorway and said "There's a sign right there." Rob pointed dismissively at the sign and said "That is not a sign." He turned around dramatically and we all huffed out of the restaurant. At this point we had to try to explain to Maggie and Henry that the playland was "broken" and that we would try to find another one. My nerves were shot as we drove to the nearest McDonald's with Henry howling in the back seat as though his entire world had ended. Finally we found an open playland where we let our children run themselves ragged until 10:30pm.

After that things went fairly smoothly. We got up the next morning and took the kids swimming, to a movie and last but not least....camping, which was actually really fun. It was one of the most....eventful weekends we have spent as a family thus far. But what can I say, that's just the impulsive kind of people we are.