Family Camping

This weekend we went camping again!  I think we've gone camping more in the last few months than we have in the last five years. I tell you, my kids are getting older, and we just want to spend as much time together as a family as we can before they're off to college or on their own. And what better way to have a family vacation than with camping? No cell phones, computers or other technological distractions. We went with 3 other families, but we still spent a lot of time as a family around the fire, going for walks, talking, canoeing and kayaking.  We were only gone for a couple of days, but even a couple of days makes such a difference. Thankfully, we had nice weather, too.  No rain, which is great since we sleep in tents. It was cool in the evening, but not freezing cold like the last time we went camping. And you know I've mentioned before that for a Florida girl like me, anything below 60 degrees is too cold for me.  But as long as I have a nice fire, I'm fine. And my son is very good at starting and keeping the fire burning. Then there's good conversation around the fire with my dear family and friends. And let's not forget some good music. One of our friends just loves playing his Johnny Cash. Just throw some good old classic rock and contemporary Christian music, and I'm good. We all share the same taste in music. My daughter also likes Indy music, which is growing on me. :)

This time we took our canoe, and my daughter brought her kayak.  It wasn't an uneventful day on the river though.  I have to admit, I stayed behind and enjoyed some quiet time reading a book.  And to be completely honest, the last time I went out on the water with my husband, he tipped us into the water.  I didn't want a repeat of that!  I didn't want it for our daughter Samantha, either, since this was actually her first time in a canoe.  So I sent her with our friend and his daughter.
My husband and our son went in our canoe, while Amber took her kayak.
My husband & Noah loading our canoe, while Amber helps load her kayak.
She's smiling. Must've been before the spider episode

Amber came back about a half hour later, exasperated by the water spiders that had crawled into her canoe! She says there were hundreds of them! Thank God she didn't tip the kayak over trying to get away from them.  I wish I could say the same for my husband and son.

Noah tells me that as his dad was talking to our friends in the other canoe, he started to lean to one side and before he could try to balance the canoe back, they were falling over and into the water! See. I'm so glad I wasn't in that canoe! Especially since there was an alligator sunning near the edge of the water just down the river from us....and I'm sure there was more than one. Our friends managed to get a picture of them as they were getting back in the canoe. Too bad they didn't get pictures of the alligator. But I'm glad to report everyone made it back to the campsite safely.

The most popular spot at our campsite was the hammock!  If anyone was missing, it was likely they were in the hammock either napping or reading. And Samantha was found in the hammock most of the time. She's been reading her new favorite book, Because of Winn Dixie. When she likes a book, she will carry it everywhere and read it several times. Just like when she likes a movie, we all get to see it several times. Which has been the case with Frozen. I'm sure we're not the only once who have watched that movie more than once in the last few weeks, though. Am I right?  And like most homeschool moms, I use it for her benefit.  One of our favorite websites that we use for homeschooling has literature-based word lists by grade level.  We found a vocabulary word list for Because of Winn Dixie and have been using that this week.  And she's been doing some of her copywork from the book, which is also helping her grammar, punctuation and penmanship.  See, school work doesn't have to be boring. She doesn't mind copy work from one of her favorite books.  I could have her copy from the dictionary or an encyclopedia. Ugh. I remember my grandfather used to have me do that. And I wasn't homeschooled!  He used to keep a notebook of vocabulary words that he found in the dictionary that were new to him. I guess that's where I get my love of words from, but copy work from dictionaries?  No, I don't think so.
Do you have any memories of educational tools you used as a kid that you use or wouldn't use with your kids?

1 comment:

  1. I was all "awwww....this is the perfect weather for camping and look at the pretty pictures" until I got to the part about the alligator sunning itself. Then I was all twitchy and fainty and "whaaaaaaa?!?!?!?!" LOL. I know, I know, alligators are a part of Fl, but holy cow... ;) So glad to read that you guys had a great family weekend!