We planned to have the kids do a camp out in our very own back yard. I mean, you really cant get a better camp spot than our back yard. It's big, has grass, shade, a play ground, and everything in the house that we might need!! ;)
We've done this several times before in the past, and the kids LOVE it. They feel like we are really camping, and we usually have lots of fun.
We had the kids set up the tent with us, one big tent (big enough for 10 people), and a small one (2 person tent). We decided that if we set up the little tent, then they could play in that one, to their hearts content. This way, they would stay out of the big tent, and flies wouldn't get in it. Have any of you noticed how flies are super attracted to tents?!? It drives me crazy, so this is why we set up two tents. It worked.....the big tent didn't have any flies or bugs when we went to sleep....but doing this DID cause something else, that I will get to later. ;)
The kids had a good time Saturday afternoon in our little camp out area that we set up, playing, running around snacking on everything and exploring. We made it feel like we were really camping.
We grilled hot dogs, which is of course, an easy and PERFECT dinner for kids! When we finished cleaning dinner up, Grandma and Grandpa came over for a little bit, just to hang out. We roasted marshmallows with them, and showed them our glow in the dark ring toss that we made. SO much fun!
The night was going great, kids were getting along, they kept themselves and us busy, and we just enjoyed being a family. By the time gma and gpa left, it was getting dark out and we decided to get the kids ready for bed....William and Katie are used to us laying in bed with them and reading a story each night, so Nick got the two little ones in the big tent, got them all cozy and read them their favorite 'A Fly Went By'. THIS is where things get a little.....funny.
Because we set the two tents up and didn't really let the kids be in the big tent all day, they were SO excited to finally be in it. Crap. They were way too excited to go to sleep, and completely ignored two rounds of 'A Fly Went By'. I was super tired at this point. William skipped his nap, and it was now 10pm. My kids NEVER stay up this late. And that's not on accident. I know my kids well enough to know that no matter how late you let them stay up, they WILL be up between 6-7am EVERY day. Period. Well I for one, DO need sleep, AND a break. So I was frustrated. It didn't last for long though, they did get settled down, and by 10:45 they were asleep. Next time we will just let them stay up with us out of the tent until they are literally falling asleep! ;)
Nick and I took turns cuddling with William and Katie, and when it wasn't our turn, we were outside playing uno with our two big kids. This is a family favorite! We laugh and get competitive.....it's always lots of fun. We played a few rounds of that, played with glow sticks and then I could tell Laura was super tired, so she crawled into her spot in the tent too. We hung out with Nicholas for a little bit before he went to bed, and then finally had adult time.
This is one of my favorite things about camping, is when the kids are asleep and Nick and I get to sit in front of the campfire, and enjoy one on one time. :) It's perfect.
We went to bed by midnight, but I tossed and turned for a couple hours. I have a really hard time sleeping every time we camp, but it doesn't stop us from doing it. We enjoy camping out with the kiddos, so I will take a night of little sleep. I believe I got 4 hours off and on last night, between listening to all the sounds outside and moving William off of my arm and back to his bed. :) I will admit, I enjoy laying in the beautiful night, listening to my little loves snoring. It makes me happy knowing they are sleeping happily, safe and they will wake up excited!
Now onto Day 14....
Today we woke up to William being plain ol' pissed off. At 6am. :/ He was confused for a minute and then realized how tired he was after missing a lot of the sleep he normally gets. Nick brought him in the house for his usual morning cartoons and some juice, but it wasn't long before he needed his mama. I sat with him until we realized all the other kids were awake and then we all went back out.
The kids were so excited to sit and talk in the big tent, I was too! This was by far one of the highlights for me. Having all my kids and my husband, in the tent, talking. It was nice, sitting with our hot coffee, and sleepy eyes.....is was chilly and sprinkling outside, so it made it even more fun to be in the tent. The world was quiet, and the kids got to experience life outside at such an early hour. We laid in the tent for a good hour just chatting. Nick was set on making breakfast outside, so I let him take that on, by himself. After getting 4 hours of sleep I needed to lay in the tent longer. It was so nice hearing my kids playing on the swing set, helping Nick cook, coming in and out of the tent. It was perfect.
Nick made a great breakfast, eggs, bacon, toast and fruit. YUM! We let the kids eat in the tent and we ate on our patio. This was awesome to them. :)
We let them goof around with the tents for a while and then decided to end our camping "trip". They did a great job pitching in, to get things cleaned up. I was very proud to see them working together.
We all really enjoyed our 2 day summer activity, it was so much fun to camp, in our own back yard! If you haven't done this, I really recommend it. It is so nice to have the camping feel, yet still have all your stuff with you in the house. Especially if you have little ones ;)
I hope you all enjoy these pictures, we had a wonderful time taking them, and making the memories :)
Here we are setting up the tents. Such great helpers we have!
The kids LOVED the play tent. It kept them so busy, playing school, and house....and camp!! ;)
Exploring in our backyard.
Time to get dinner started!
I'm blessed to have these 4 beautiful people as my kids.
A camping favorite...roasting marshmallows.
Our glow in the dark ring toss, that we couldn't wait to play, so we played in the day light.
Cozy and ready for their story.
Uno with my big kids!
Awake and excited, bright and early!
Lacey came outside to see what was going on. She missed us :)
After some cuddle time with mama, my boy was all smiles!
Katie took this picture, herself....and I fell in love with it. Such a beauty.
Camping makes us hungry!!! My kids all ate about 3 eggs each!
Such a great man, making breakfast for his family.