Mr. 72 and I decided to take the three kids camping for one night this weekend. We decided on Fools Hollow Lake in Show Low, AZ. Nice RV camping spot with full hookups so we didn’t need to worry about the generator breaking or running out of water. We got the last spot in all of AZ…this was the only option we had if we wanted to go with hookups. I promptly booked it.
I wasn’t nervous with the idea; I knew it would be rough, that naps and bedtime probably wouldn’t be easy, that trying to keep three kids in one ungated areas would be impossible. But I was hopeful that we would manage the best we could. The night before we left Silas wouldn’t sleep; he kept waking up, which meant I kept waking up. Not to go get him but just hearing him crying. I did check once because we had a scorpion in the house last week so I wanted to make sure he wasn’t being attached by another one (he wasn’t). Then he woke up at 5:00 am asking for “malkie malkie” so he was cranky because he woke up too early for the next few hours. Therefore, I thought….why are we purposely going to put us in this situation times 3 kids? Luckily, I got him back down for a nap (can you call it a nap if it’s at 7:00 am?). He slept till 8:00 and woke up a happy boy!! Yay! Let’s do this!
Mr. 72 didn’t get a lot of sleep either. He stayed up late, thankfully, to change out the broken air vents in the trailer so we wouldn’t be rained on (oh ya, forecast for Show Low, thunderstorms!). Then he stayed up to decompress from a crazy work week and preparing for the trip, so needless to say he went bed late and woke up early to finish packing, then pick up the girls, and then me and Smiles.
We got on the road, it went well for the most part. I had a hidden stash of crafts and stuff to do just in case things got rough. We had movies, snacks, and were hoping for some naps on the way. It rained for most of the trip but the wind was soft enough for us to keep moving on with the trailer. We got halfway to Payson and it was time to bust out the snacks. Thankfully, that tided the kids over for a little while…then came out the pipe cleaners…all the while watching Sesame Street and Dora. We were pleasantly surprised at how well they all did for a three and a half hours trip. About 20 minutes from our destination, we hear more vocally now, “how much farther?!?!”. Ok. Now we’ve got to get there, the kids are losing steam…..and I take us down the wrong road. [crap] Thank goodness it was just a quick turnaround and then we were at camp.
You could definitely tell it was nap time; the kids were on edge a bit. Smiles was off in his own world in the dirt, covered head to toe, literally. That’s my boy. Let it happen, I think, it’s camping, what did you think was going to happen. The girls decided they needn’t take naps and would rather go fishing with dad, so I hung back with Smiles and he took a good nap. I was dosing off and then……I realized I left my camera on the picnic table and if I went outside I would wake up Smiles with the door. So there I sat on the bench inside writing this story watching my camera outside. [wish me luck…glad I bought Pringle’s, yum]
And I’mmmmmm Back!
The remainder of the trip was challenging, not going to lie. There were two dominating figures in the group and neither was of drinking age. Smiles and Thumper came to blows a few times, not really as dramatic as it sounds, but someone was either hit or on their bum, not of their own volition. One year apart and both dominate personalities, God help us. Miss H was relatively easy, she found her role of big sister and took Smiles on as her little follower and Smiles was happy to do it. They play so well together and Miss H seems like to help Smiles learn something or do anything. It was so adorable to watch her lead the way to the playground and him just follow her along.
That Sunday, we all went to the lake, I rode the two littles in the bike trailer and Mr. 72 got some quality time with Miss H and walked down to fish at the lake. Man that is a STEEP hill on a bike with two 25 pounders in the back, lol. It was nice though to be able to watch the two littles together by myself even for a few minutes. It gave me a little confidence that I can do this. They will listen to me rather than tying me up and setting me on fire.
Miss H lost her front tooth while eating her Cheerios that morning. She was so scared the night before at dinner that it was going to hurt and we were trying to tell her stories of our teeth issues but to no avail. When it finally happened though, she was so proud, nervous proud, but proud. She kept repeating “My tooth just randomly fell out”, I think she just learned the word “randomly” LOL.
Well, all in all it was a successful camping trip and I think we are more prepared for the family trip at the end of August. Even though two kids came home with bruises and scrapes all over their bodies and one with one less tooth, I think we managed to pull it off! The trip home was quiet, as they slept for most of the trip….and I may have bribed the girls with pizza/movie night if they were good on the way home and didn’t ask “Are we there yet?.” Don’t judge me; I’m not above bribing kids if it is for my own sanity. It was funny though, as I offer the bribe, Miss H says they have to be good cause “Dad is almost a grandpa”, to which I swiftly say “Nu-Uh! Don’t ever say that”, then the girl says, “He’s old”….I laugh, well maybe he is a little oldER but come on. Now I’m on the defensive with his six year-old, LOL.
This trip was a good judge of how we parent, right now separately, but someday together. I felt a little overwhelmed because I don’t know what to do with parenting other kids that aren’t mine. Then add in girls and older than mine. I can only imagine this will take a while to learn, I’m used of being the aunt…not the parent to kids this age. I don’t know where my role is, but Mr. 72 and I will earn together as this is brand new territory for both of us.