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Lessons Learned While Camping


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Our dog is the best possible camping dog ever. She is smart enough to be scared of bears. Very scared. Good call Javanater, good call. I was scared too.


No matter how you fold it or roll it, that tent will not fit back in its bag until you try three times and drop lots of F bombs.

Mr. Bear will steal your snacks. And camping without snacks is kind of a bummer. I mean really, isn’t that why lemon Oreos were invented, for camping? And camping without S’mores is a bit sad. At least the thievery happened on the 5th night. I went all Paleo on accident after that.

The moment is the moment: be here now. At some point, the site its done. No more fixing stuff, you have dug in and you are set. Enjoy it.

Going to someone else’s abandoned site on Sunday afternoon to take firewood is not stealing, it is being resourceful. We were resourceful ten times.  Also scored 12 bottles of water from a bear box. Suck it weekenders, we ain’t done with our campfires yet!

You must completely submerge yourself in a cold, snow-run-off body of water (in this case, creek), at least once. It feels amazing.

I should remember how good it feels to have the simplicity of choices, the ease of decision making. A book. Not a choice of ten and the pull of the other five I should read before school starts. The cool sweatshirt, the warm sweatshirt. The one pair of flips. It makes me want to be a minimalist. Kind of.

A media hiatus is a great idea. No Facebook, Instagram, Medium, or Pinterest. No Trending Now anything. Thumbs up to not caring about what is going on in the world for a few days. The only trending thing was the morning discussion about the bear who visited us all six nights, and the discussion of the daily plan. Should we hike? Shoot some guns? Go to the lake?  These decisions were great to make. Trending now, it’s time to move our lawn chairs into the shade. And is 11:00 too soon to start drinking beer? Nope, it isn’t.


Best Book: Gone with the Wind

Best coffee: Blind Dog, Nevada Black:  Melitta pour-over-the-cup style.

Best Hacks: Frozen water bottles in the cooler keep it all cold for days,  crack all the eggs ahead of time and store them in a container to just pour at breakfast time, and premake soup, freeze, defrost at site, heat, eat.

Worst hacks: Make pancake mix ahead and freeze it in plastic baggie, defrost, squeeze on to pan. No, didn’t work so great. And really, when all you have to do is add water to the powdered mix, how hacky do you have to get?

Highs and Lows:

Highs: Tommy reading Survive the Night to me. I love hearing that boy read. Coffee time that went on for at least an hour in front of a crackling campfire or a dancing creek. Shooting a gun for the first time. Lots of reading and journaling time. Talking with my family with no technology interruptions. Love.

Lows: Well, a bear did steal our snacks.

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