This weekend we decided to go camping. Ty had Friday off which was fabulous!! We spent the morning Friday getting ready and figuring out exactly what we were going to do and where we were going to go. We had some friends who were possibly coming, so we were trying to pin down all the details before we ventured out of cell phone range. We fianlly piled everyone in the car, ran to the grocery store for the last minute food items, threw them in the cooler in the parking lot and headed out around 2:30. I was really excited. I love to camp! We drove to Joshua Tree and looked for a camping spot even though the rangers had told us they were all full. We were getting a bit discouraged and on our way out of the park to drive over the BLM land (desolate sand dune) decided just for fun we'd drive to where we'd most want to camp if we had the choice of anywhere in the park. This place is close to lots of climbing, has trees and lots of vegetation and is covered with interesting rock formations. We were so lucky! We found an awesome spot just right to pitch our tent and let the kids play. We were close to really neat rocks and we were sheltered from the wind a little bit by a huge boulder. It was a great spot!
We spent the evening setting up and the kids played. One of their favorite features - aside from the sand and rocks - was the fire pit. They both got pretty sooty, but they had a great time! Brookie had a hard time at first trying to figure out walking on the uneven ground. She fell several times and seemed really frustrated. Good thing she was totally enamored with the dirt and rocks which helped her forget about being grumpy until she fell again. By the end of the trip, however, whe was walking really well over all types of terrain. I have a feeling we're going to have to put a beacon on her next time we go camping so we can find her after she takes off. She loved it!
We drove into Joshua Tree the town that evening to finalize plans with friends and buy some matches. We were soooo sad when it turned out that none of our friends were able to make it. We hope we can plan another time to do it soon. Camping is really fun with friends. The trip was still awesome though. The kids had a BLAST and just watching them enjoy it so much made it worth all the hassle.
We put them in bed that night and sang for about 20 minutes until Brookie fell asleep all tucked in to Ty's mummy bag. Cole was in the portable crib in the tent under (but not in) his sleeping bag. He didn't fall asleep, but was really good about laying there and enjoying the evening while Ty and I finally ate dinner, enjoyed a few stars (millions actually - we haven't seen that many stars in a long time!) and then came to bed. Cole was still awake when we came in and we talked a little in whispering voices. We finally told him it was time to go to sleep and he was quiet for a long time. It was still early, but really dark so Ty and I started whispering again and pretty soon a little voice joined in. Tyler told me he was going to to roll onto his back. Coleman's little voice quickly added, "I can lay on my back too." as we heard him roll over. He was so cute and so funny. He was thuroughly enjoying himself and sleeping in the tent with Mom and Dad. He copied everything Tyler did. If Ty rolled over, Cole rolled over, if Ty whispered, Cole whispered. It was really cute. These kiddos really think their daddy is something! I think he's pretty awesome too!
The kids slept great. In the middle of the night Brookie woke up a little and Ty brought her into our sleeping bag. A few minutes later we thought Cole might be cold because he refuesed to get IN his bag - he only wanted it as a blanket. Ty brought him in our sleeping bag too and he slept great. everyone did. It was nice. Ty and I were a little squished, but we survived.
In the morning it was chilly so we stayed in our PJs and coats. It was a pretty relaxed morning. The kids played and we made breakfast burritos. I was hoping we'd figure out a way to climb at least a little, but as it turned out, it wasn't in the cards for this time. We just hung out. Brookie took a nap, then when she got up Cole was ready for one. We took them on a drive in the car to do some recon on good climbing sites for next time and Cole fell asleep really fast. We just let him sleep in the car while we packed stuff up and Brookie played. It worked out great. Ty did most of the packing while I played in the dirt with Brookie. It was fun to have some one-on-one time with her.
The drive home was easy and we got home early enough to unpack a bit and get a few things done before Sunday. It was a terrific trip. I hope we can go again soon! Thanks for all your hard work Ty!
building a tower with rocks
our squirrel friend who hung out with us during and after breakfast