Thursday, June 28, 2012

Camping With Cousins

This past week we went camping with my husband's brother and his wife and their three little girls as well as my mother and father-in-law.  The kids had so much fun with their cousins!

My brother and sister-in-law bring this little picnic table to every event and the six kids fit on it perfectly (at least right now they do!)  My MIL, SIL, and myself each made one big meal for everyone while we were there.  The first night my MIL made sloppy joes and macaroni and cheese for everyone!  Perfect kid meal!  My SIL provided us with a taco/nacho bar for lunch one of the days and I made BBQ pulled pork sandwiches and pasta salad for another dinner.  All three of us ladies took advantage of electricity hook up at our campsites and used our crockpots!  Gotta love 'em!

The other meals while we were there included pancakes and sausage, hot dogs over the campfire, and sandwiches. 

Oh, my goodness were the kids filthy!!!  There was a playground just behind our campsites and the kids loved swinging on the swings and playing in the sandbox.  They also went barefoot a lot while we were there so we were blessed with dirty little campers the whole time! That's what camping is all about!

The kids had so much fun playing with cousins! 

And Uncle Lane!

We had lots of adventures...

...hiking in the woods...


Cousin Abby declared Claire "Princess of the Forest" with a birch bark crown and a stick for her royal sceptor!

Oliver riding on daddy's shoulders - Oliver LOVED the walk in the woods and enthusiastically pointed out deer and snakes, trees and woodchips, and the sun shining through the woods.

 Best buds - I asked Claire what the best part of our camping trip was and she said "Playing with Molly!"

 Claire, Daddy, and Cousin Molly

Oliver exploring nature!  We had to make sure he stayed out of the poison ivy.  It was everywhere!

Gracy wore her bike helmet pretty much the whole camping trip!  You can never be too safe and she looks so darn cute in it anyway!

I took arts and crafts supplies with us.  The kids all loved doing watercolor paintings.  They each did several and used all the paper I had brought along!

Oliver even insisted on getting in on the art projects! He took it very seriously!

 The kids LOVED riding bikes and with not many campers at the park while we were there, we were able to comfortably allow them to ride around the loop in front of our campsites. 
They had so much fun!
Abby 6, Hugh 9, Gracy 6, Claire 3 1/2, Molly 4, and Oliver 22 months.
 The lake was just a hop, skip, and a jump away!  The kids were so anxious to go swimming and play in the sand together!

I guess this is their Vogue-style sassy look?!?!  We didn't plan for these poses, just happened!

The bigger kids hit the water immediately! They had smiles on their faces the whole time!

 Miss Molly floated around near the shore!

Oliver had no interest in getting in the water and was quite content to just collect sticks and throw rocks!  Worked for me!

Playing in the sand may just have been the highlight of the beach trip!

My beautiful beach baby!

Again - filthy kids, but happy kids!

We had some visitors while we were camping.  Oliver called these "munks!"

We were a bit surprised at how many racoons were hanging out around the campground and how tame they seemed to be.  A little too friendly, if you ask me!

Grandma helped Claire roast a marshmallow on the campfire.

Everyone slept VERY well!  The adventures with the cousins in the fresh air wore them right out!  Claire and Oliver snuggled so well together in the camper!

I know we provided them with amazing memories they will talk about with their cousins years from now!  It really takes so little to make them so happy.  This is what summer is all about!

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