Monday, August 10, 2009

Camping—Days Two & Three...

Day two of camping started out much better. Miss Avalee woke up with a big smile and was her usual cheerful self. Yay!
We gave her a bath in the same little boat we had on the river (Aunt CC & her boyfriend Alex lugged a bucket all the way from the showers for us!), which was perfect. She loved it and it seemed to put her in an even better mood.
With Avalee feeling much better, we felt we could get in some rafting, so we left her with Grandma and Grandpa and got ready. Colin, Liz and I loaded the raft and ourselves into the truck. Liz and I had the honors of sitting in the truck bed, holding the raft, while Colin drove. Just the drive to the drop off point was an adventure, in itself! We have to leave the campground and head into the city, a few miles away. Colin was very anxious to get to rafting that he sped off, and poor Liz and I almost flew out of the truck with the boat! After a yell to Colin to slow down, we safely made it to the boat launch area.
It was the hottest time of day when we left, so the water splashing in the raft felt so nice. Liz decided we should stop somewhere to jump in the icy water, so we found a little spot that was perfect. There was a small area that was set up as a little swimming spot, so we pulled up next to it and hopped out. Colin and Liz got right into the river, but I opted for the little swimming area instead. After much ribbing from them (hey, safety first, especially for this klutz!), I finally joined them in the river. Luckily I didn't float away, and got some much needed cooling down!
We decided to go down once more after lunch, but take Z with us this time. I was a little nervous, because I wasn't sure how he might react to some of the rougher areas (the area we raft is very mild though). He had on his life jacket and lots of sunscreen, and we went over the rules several times (always wear your life jacket, always stay in the raft and the oars are only for adults) until we were sure he had them. Well, he had a blast! He kept directing us to go over 'the big waves, the BIG waves!' He really loved in when the water splashed in, soaking Mommy! We decided to make a couple pit stops to get out and swim a little (yeah, we broke our own rule-no leaving the raft-but we were the grown-ups, so were allowed) and Z loved that. He almost didn't want to get back in the raft, until we reminded him there were more big waves coming. We didn't disappoint, because the final part of our run is the part with the most rapids. We bounced around and got splashed with water while Z yelled, “whee, whee-eeee!” As soon as we got out of the raft, he was asking to go again!
After we got back to camp, we found out Avalee had started to heat up a little again, so we cranked the AC in the car and I fed her in there. It was a win-win for both of us! ;0) She felt much better after that, and was perfect the rest of the evening.
After dinner, me Colin, Z & Avalee went to the playground, adjacent to our campsite. After we played for a bit, Z suggested we run through the sprinklers that were watering the nearby baseball field. It was still so hot out, so we thought it sounded like a pretty good idea! Well, the four of us had such a great time just running around, 'trying' to avoid the (rotating) sprinklers spraying us. Even Avalee was just giggling and kicking her little legs. What fun!
We ended the evening around the campfire, eating s'mores (of course!).
On Wednesday. We realized we had finally depleted our supply of water and ice. My mom and I decided a trip to nearby Stayton was in order. We could have just gone into the little store in town, but than we wouldn't have had as much time in the AC car. ;0) We decided to take Avalee to let her cool down a bit, and it also gave Z and Daddy some time together. As soon as we got back to camp, we had lunch than Colin Z and I headed off for a nature walk. There is a really amazing nature trail that goes through the backwoods of the campground. It's so peaceful and beautiful, and last year when we took Z, he loved it. This year, it was obviously a little warmer than last year, so we made it a much shorter walk (there are several different trails you can take). It was interesting to see the difference in Z from last year to this year; last year he was more interested in collecting rocks, twigs, moss, etc and this year he just wanted to run, climb and jump everywhere. I'm not sure how he has so much energy sometimes! We all had a lot of fun, and managed to stay hydrated enough to make it back to camp! Once we got back, we realized we needed to cool down and decided another trip to the river was in order! We decided to go back to the little swimming spot we had discovered the day before on our rafting trip. We felt it was a better area to have Avalee in the water too. It was quite a distance there so we all packed in the van (the four of us, my mom, grandma and my cousin) and headed over. It was very hot when we got there, so we all jumped right it. Even Avalee let Colin put her right in the water this time. And, when we put her in the little boat, she just loved it! It was the perfect place to let her float around, because there was no danger of getting caught in a current. Z had his life jacket on, and had so much fun just laying in the water and floating. We stayed down there until we were all sufficiently soaked, then decided dinner was quickly approaching. We decided for our last night, we would get pizza from this awesome little pizza parlor in town. Colin and I drove in and picked up pizza for everyone and took it back to camp for a big feast! The evening consisted of lots more s'mores and stories around the campfire.

Happy Little Miss getting morning hugs from Daddy

Avalee getting a fun, fishy bath

One of my favorite candid moments from the trip; Z feeding his sis some snacks

S'more time!

Heading out for our nature walk

Always the superhero!

Me & Z on our walk

He loved floating in his lifejacket!

I think the look on her face just says it all!

Avalee cooling off with Daddy

A rare photo of the four of us

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