CampyPosted: September 11, 2013
I used to go camping a lot as a kid. And by “camping,” I mean, I would stay in a fairly large camper with my grandparents and my cousin Keilah. In one camper, we had our own little room upstairs with two twin beds and closets and a little night stand between us. We would sit up there on our beds with the matching quilts (I think they were orange?) and sort our massive stash of taffy. Grandma did all of the cooking inside in her little kitchen, and we even had a TV. We camped at the beach, in the mountains, and we were annual regulars at the Riveredge RV Park in Pigeon Forge, TN. They had a water slide.
I think I camped in a tent once in high school. I was helping oversee an overnight retreat for the younger girls at church. I was in a tent with maybe four middle-school girls. It rained, and our tent flooded a little and then one of the girls puked and I remember that her puddle was at least in the rainwater puddle, so we were able to escape fairly unscathed.
Tim and I camped together twice before we had kids. We worked as camp counselors two summers with our church youth group, and we would have a little camp counselor retreat by Kerr Lake in NC. The tent camping wasn’t as atrocious as I made it out to be. I would daresay I even enjoyed myself, when I wasn’t having to psych myself up for middle-of-the-night walks to the bathroom. I had to force myself to push aside all memories of Deliverance and talk to Jesus the whole way.
I did have one spectacular camping experience that will go down in the books. When I was in South Africa, we camped one night in a place called Warmbaths. I was paired up with my friend Erica Lineberry, who I am convinced can set up a tent in the dark with one arm tied behind her back. She is bona fide. She made our little tent cozy. Or maybe I was just so flipping tired from being on a bus for eight million hours that I could have slept on a concrete slab…
We all know that having children will make you do things you never thought you wanted to do before. Like killing spiders with your bare hands, staying up to the wee hours to fashion costumes out of random things around your house, cutting perfectly good crusts off of bread… and for me, living in a tent for three days.
Yes, a couple of times a year I transform myself into an outdoorsy-type. A granola mom. I dehydrate fruit and pack up everything needed to replicate home cooking outside. I also stock up on bug spray and citronella candles. Last year Tim used his bonus from work to line and cover the back of his truck mainly so we can go camping.
I actually kind of like it.
I am going to tell you how I came to be a campy girl and how I survive living in a tent in my next post. I’ll also be talking about my favorite camping essentials and how to make the very best coffee in the world.