Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Grandma DeWitt Becomes One With Nature

I still can't believe that I convinced my Mom to go camping on her visit with us. I never thought, honestly, that the carrot of really cool places to visit would be enough to sacrifice a bed for. We did take a few wilderness vacations when I was a kid. But twice a full scale spa and resort were involved, another time a bed and breakfast and the worst we ever had it was sleeping in a cabin with cots in Yosemite. My Mom always refers to that trip to Yosemite as a camping trip. I think she thinks it deserves that designation because we slept in sleeping bags, didn't have running water and had to walk to the bathrooms.

Our kids were so excited that they were the ones that would get to take Grandma on her very first legitimate camping trip. I tried to sooth her nerves with the fact that we were only going for one night and that she could sleep on our air mattress. But then 15 minutes into setting up camp there was no more air mattress. We pumped it up. And then pumped it up again. Then we patched the hole with duct tape and pumped it up again. I kept taking sideways glances at my poor Mom as the air slowly leaked out of her night of comfort. She never let on to the turmoil that was undoubtedly going through her head. I wonder what she was thinking. Probably that the two hour drive home was looking really good right about then. I had this horrible guilt weighing on me. Here I was responsible for taking my Mom on her first ever camping trip and making sure that she enjoyed it enough to do it again. And I didn't have a bed for her. Kids have bones young enough to absorb all the bumps and discomforts of sleeping "al natural" on the ground. Us adults we need padding...So Dave and I gave my parents our new sleeping rolls. (I have used them since...the are luxurious!) My poor Mom was so brave and never said another word about it.

So here we are camping at Kalaloch. It was so fun to sit around the fire with Grandma and Grandpa. Everyone had fun telling funny stories about each other. We did a few mad libs, had a easy camp dinner of roasted hot dogs, made smores and put on a traditional Wilcox light show.

We had a huge roaring fire thanks to Chase. Dave sent him out to gather firewood. After he had been gone for a long time (maybe 30 minutes), poor Grandpa started to get worried. He went out after him. A while later he returned with Chase in toe carrying this crazy log that was just as tall as him and probably just as heavy. As we all sat around the campfire Chase treated us to a story that had us all laughing. I wish I wasn't so behind in my journaling. I would remember it better. But it went something like this:

Dave had dropped Chase off at one of the trails to the beach to get drift wood for our fire. But on his way up, with this huge log Chase had forgotten which path to take to our part of the camp. He kept hiking down the beach to try and find it. He crossed a river (which he hadn't crossed to get the would think that would have tipped him off)and kept going. He finally arrived at a small "village" (his words) where everybody was "old" (also his words). He asked one of the old ladies where our camp was and she told him a couple of miles back the way he had come. (mind you he is still carrying that ginormous log) When my Dad stumbled upon him he had made his way up the right trail and was dragging the big old log behind him.

We were all laughing so hard. I asked Chase to pick the log back up after he had stumbled into camp, let the log drop to the ground and told us his story. He looked at me like I had lost my mind. But he was a good sport!

Katie had been waiting all day to teach Grandma how to make smores. I think she was shocked to find out that Grandma had never made real "fire" smores. She helped put my Mom's marshmallow on the skewer, showed her where the best place in the fire was, taught her how to turn the skewer and really got into the whole ins and outs of putting the smore together (you know graham cracker, chocolate, melty marshmallow). Grandma was a good sport letting Kate be the teacher. Here they are enjoying their tasty treat.
After the campfire fun we were visited by not really we just had fun teaching Grandma and Grandpa how to put on a light show. This one is my favorite!


Anonymous said...

It was a great camping trip. You may even get Grandma out again! The key is "wherever the grandkids go"!!!
Tucson Grandpa

Anonymous said...

It was fun to relive the fun time, Chase I still laugh when I remember your adventure and story of the log.
Katie, you were such a good helper-thanks for teaching Grandma about the smores.
Sara, you were a handful to watch but ever so cute and adorable!
Emily, you were a true adventurer on the beach.
Love you all!!!
Grandma D

Andrea said...

so fun! how do you do the light show?