About a year ago, a very kind neighbor of ours gave us their pop-up camper. It has since been an eyesore in our backyard for lack of a better place to store it. We’ve set it up a few times in the yard, but it took us this long to finally take it out on it’s maiden voyage. It is pretty old but they kept it in mint condition and made many happy family memories in it and they wanted us to be able to do the same now that their kids are well out of the home. Isn’t that so generous of them?
We went to a beautiful campground that is close to Cherokee, NC with my brother and sister-in-law and their daughter. It was their first time camping as a family so it was a maiden voyage for them, also, I suppose. The weather was beautiful, there were no bugs pestering us and there was a good breeze. The daytime was warm and sunny, the evenings and mornings were cool enough to be cozy. We enjoyed all the things that make camping special — strong coffee, food that tastes better cooked out in the open air, hanging out around the campfire, hiking, swimming in the river, s’mores, and good conversation. Phoebe made a sweet little friend named Holly which worked out well because she had hoped to have someone her age to play with. We also enjoyed watching the elk nearby, and I loved hearing them bugling in a field just a short drive down the road from the campground. So neat to be able to share that with the kids and see their wonder and excitement to be so close to such majestic animals! (They were really close at times, right up near the edge of the road). We also had some rowdy campground neighbors who kept us up late into the night, but we paid them back with early morning screaming babies. Good sleep is not something you can typically expect while camping, but it is truly all worth it. Coming home tired and smelling like equal parts sweat and campfire is all part of the experience and we truly loved it. It was a treat to have some extended time family, and I could really see Brandon unwind, too. The pop-up is pretty fun but I don’t mind tent camping at all either. We didn’t get to use too many of it’s fanciest features (we didn’t hook up to electricity or water) but it is fun to dream about taking it on a longer voyage one day.
(I’ll share a few more photos from camping in another post, this one seemed long enough.)