Saturday, May 7, 2011

G'Night Campers!

Last weekend, Bob and I decided to take the boys to the camp. We invited Jim and Kathy along to enjoy its rustic flair and to help us corral the kids. They worked extremely hard, and Bob and I appreciate their efforts on our behalf. The last time we went to the camp, it was 4th of July, and we sold our house. Sadly, it was not our good luck charm a second time, and we are still trying to find someone to live in our beautiful dream home so that we can move to Florida and commune with alligators. Upon our arrival, we were greeted by Grandma, her new sporty ride, and a fallen mimosa tree. The boys had a great time, and we stayed outside in the tent so that we could have a little family adventure with the kids. The first morning, Michael discovered we were in the same location and spent about an hour climbing on top of us at 4:30 as I tried to sleep. James crawled in the bed and snuggled with Daddy, and Ryan roamed around the tent for three or four minutes before he realized that Bob and I were in there with him. The kids had a wonderful time, and so did the rest of us. Grandma was, as always, a gracious hostess, and for the first time, I brought the food and planned the meals. I think it went pretty well. On Saturday, the kids spent the whole day exploring.
Except for the part of the day when it rained, and they sat on Momo's bed and watched YoYoYo. Enraptured, there's no other word for it.
Michael and Daddy discuss how to go up and down the stairs carefully. By the time we left, they were pros.
Ryan makes the climb. That candle on the shelf suffered quite a few mishaps as Ry tried to remove the "balls" from the garland around it. My Momo Chapman would have loved to see that.
Ryan sports the party hat.
Tiny Tom Sawyer.
James gives Daddy a push in the right direction - it's time to explore!
The boys hanging out on the dock. If my Popo could see this dry dock, it would make him sick. While we were at the camp, Bob and Jim tried to put the shed back to Popo acceptable conditions. He had shelves and fishing rods labeled and little notes everywhere. It's good to know that OCD runs in the family, and that I'm not the only one who loves a labelmaker. We found Popo's good rod and reel marked with a paper plate that said "Do not use. JFC." Makes me tear up just thinking about it.
Into the woods.
Ryan takes time to roll around on the ground while sporting the new beads Momo brought him.
Momo and Michael exploring the woods.

Grandpa gives James a ride in the canoe.
Michael on walkabout with his best friend and his Momo.
Ryan tends Momo's weed (ahem, herb) garden.
Ryan and Daddy test out the 4-wheeler.
Three little riders before the trauma (Michael must sense that something is about to happen as he has a definite pout on his face).
Ryan takes the reigns from Daddy while his brothers close in on his prime position.
Michael knows that all true great men keep their blankets with them when mastering fine machinery.
James throws up an arm and rides that bull, I mean that 4-wheeler, like a champ.

This is a very triplet video. At first glance, it's just one kid doing a Tyson on another, but you must watch closely to fully understand the true brilliance of these 18 seconds. A little background, Ryan had the 4-wheeler to himself, but his brothers wanted to ride too. Michael got the front seat, James got the back, and that left Ryan in the middle. The quickest way to get rid of Michael was to bite him, but by being the Mike Tyson of the group, Ryan also was removed from the vehicle. The man to watch in this is James. When Ryan bites Michael, James claps. He knows that they are going to have to get off the 4-wheeler, and he will be left to ride it like none other. Nicely played, James, nicely played.
James and Grandma play solitaire. Well, it started off as solitaire but became James plays with cards.
Riding the 4-wheeler with Daddy. James and Ryan really loved it, but Michael took one trip around the circle then called it quits. Michael sure does hate noisy things, and the 4-wheeler is pretty noisy.

One thing about being the camera woman, you sometimes forget that your inane conversations are also recorded while you chronicle those precious life moments.
James attempts a nap time jailbreak. Thankfully, he is too short to reach the zippers on our "two-person" tent. (Bob and I recently set up the tent to see if it would fit in Zach's house to contain the kids. He told me it was a two person tent, but I'm pretty sure this tent is much larger than Zach's entire living room. We fit a queen air mattress, a kids tent (5'x6'), and still had room to walk around. I've never owned a tent that you can stand up in, so this is definitely luxurious camping).
Momo and Michael relax on the porch. Michael enjoys a slice of watermelon. Good times.
James takes a trip (or should I say a scooch) down the stairs. I'm sure that he has the dock in his sights. One of the few benefits of the water being abysmally low is not having to worry about the kids falling off the dock and drowning.
Ryan and Michael need a little ice to cool off from all their running around.
The boys help Daddy put new ice in the ice chest - a very important skill passed down from fathers to sons the world over.
Momo & Ryan go on walkabout once again. Note our tent palace placed strategically next to the fallen mimosa tree and only slightly on the downhill slant. One of the reasons we went to the camp was to meet with the guy who used to work with Bob and had our new territory. We went to dinner at the Fin and Feather with him and his girlfriend. We had a very nice time, but while we were gone, the boys ate, took a bath, and then the Grands put them to bed. Almost immediately, the wind started to blow so hard the tent was folding in half, and the Grands moved the kids inside with their little tent. The kids refused to go in their tent, and we ended up breaking the zipper trying to shove them inside. This meant Bob and I moved everyone back into the big tent in hopes that the kids would settle down and go to sleep. It eventually worked, but around 1:30 a.m. Ryan woke up and was extremely restless. He and I went inside to get some milk. He then proceeded to throw up on me - hitting my mouth, my hair, filling my bra with chunks of "yuck," and making it all the way down my shirt to my PJ pants. Needless to say, he and I spent the night in the recliner. Thankfully, the next morning he seemed fine and had a nice day. Tragically, I only packed one vomit covered bra and had to go all 1972 feminist all day (something I don't mind doing in the privacy of my own home, but definitely makes me feel self-conscious about swinging low in public). We had a wonderful time and managed to avoid tragedy when Momo found James' blanket and we met on the road and retrieved it. We also stopped by and saw Uncle JP and Aunt Sue on our way home, so overall, it was a great trip even if it included a $40 barely consumable meal at the DQ.

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