July 24th weekend was the perfect time to do a little camping trip. Amazingly enough, we were able to fit all of our kids and all of our camping equipment into and on top of our Ford Expedition. Let me clarify by saying that no kids were put on top of the Ford!
After getting all packed up, we had to get our supplies at Walmart. Of course, every other Utah family went camping the same day we did, so there were some things that were out of stock. But we managed to get by with what we could.
As soon as we got to Payson Lakes, a fellow camper informed us of a moose in another area of the camp. I didn't want to miss a moose, so I quickly gathered all the kids in the car and we headed over to see her. She was very busy eating the leaves on that plant. Everyone got a good look at the moose. It was a fun little surprise to welcome us on Thursday.
We set up camp quickly and then found Lindsey, Ryan, and all of their kids down at the lake. They had gotten there several hours before us. We decided to share dinner. They dined on my gourmet chili I made and then we had some delicious dutch oven peach cobbler over at their campsite. I have to say that it was a lot more fun this year being able to go with another family. The kids had someone else to play with and everyone got along very well.
We have a huge tent. It has three rooms and it barely fit in our campsite. Rinar thought it was a good idea not to put the fly on, so that we could see the stars. Seeing stars is great, except he did not bring enough warm clothes and blankets for himself. Hence, he pretty much didn't sleep all night. And for some reason, I had a difficult time falling asleep as well.
I was happy to get up the next day and go do stuff. In the morning I took Raef and Zach on a bird watching expedition in order to help them get a merit badge done. I really stunk at identifying birds. I bet there were probably 40 different kinds of birds, but I was only sure on 6 of them. But I guess 6 is better than nothing.
Then we headed down to the lake with the family to hang out and have some fun. We were able to bring our large inflatable boat and a slew of life jackets. I can't believe it fit in our car, but it did. It was a lot of fun. They went out many times on the water. I hung out on the shore because I forgot my darn swimming suit. And Noelle couldn't just crawl around because it was super rocky and dusty. She sat in her stroller or we all took turns holding her. Surprisingly, she just fell asleep at some point and took a solid nap after lunch. But I did end up taking her on a little hike with my backpack and Rinar also strolled her around the lake once.
We were there for about 7 hours and Ryan took advantage of the calm and had a siesta right there in the brush. Must be nice Ryan.
Besides swimming, exploring, and sand castles, the kids played Scum together, the new favorite card game the boys brought back from Scout Camp.
In the evening two other families came to join us: Cassie and Zach W., and Brett and Kristen M. It was just a bummer that they weren't able to come sooner. But we did do desserts together...smores, of course! I brought my guitar and made sure to print off some current music. Everyone had a blast singing Imagine Dragons songs. We did those many times and then we also sang "Let It Go" from Frozen. That was adorable, as all the little girls joined in joyfully. Campfires and guitars seem to go together really well.
We had to leave pretty early in the morning because it was the official start for the football season. Raef had try-outs and he couldn't miss. But it was a great to be able to go camping again this year... and this time with friends. I hope we can do it again next year. Fun times.