The drive was easy, aside from some unexpected traffic through Everett. (We did have an unexpected stop along the way when we realized we forgot to pack pillows (WHOOPS), so stopped at the next Fred Meyer our phone GPS could identify.) Aside from those things, it was an easy drive. :)
We found our camp site very easily and were impressed by the size of the state park and the fact we were so close to the beach. By standing on a rock or our picnic table benches, we could see the water. No complaints about that!!
While Eric and I set up camp, the kids donned their helmets and rode their scooters around the loop our site was on. They quickly made friends with a family two spots down from us and basically disappeared until I retrieved them some time later. As soon as we had the tent and kitchen area set up, it was time to officially relax and get into camping mode. It was a little chilly/windy (we expected this, so weren't surprised), so we got a fire going fairly early in the day.
|One of our few brushes with wildlife|
The kids and I explored the nearby beach while Eric stuck close to the fire; we figured being responsible for a forest fire would be frowned upon, so left him as the sentry. The view from the beach was stunning; the sun glistened and made the water sparkle like it was crusted with diamonds. Annika and Conor happily scaled much of the driftwood scattered on the beach and practiced their rock skipping skills. We searched high and low for the perfect skipping stones. Because we weren't in water-friendly clothes or shoes, I was on high alert when it came to keeping the kids out of the Sound. For the most part, I was successful, so I considered it a win.
|Exploring the beach|
|Panoramic view of the beach|
|Our girl on her driftwood throne|
|Annika skipping a rock|
|Our rock skippers|
|Our other brush with the local wildlife|
After our jaunt to the beach, it was time to get roasting. The kids decided to head back on the path we took to the beach and I opted for the road route. (Six one way, half a dozen the other.) Annika decided to explore past where our campsite was and didn't arrive at our site with Conor. After a minor heart attack and a few minutes of walking the path while calling her name, we located Annika (who was walking toward us) and reminded the kids about making safe (and sound) choices. Ugh!!
Once my heart returned to a normal pace, it was time for dinner, which consisted of roasted hot dogs, baked beans, and fried red potatoes. The kids loved roasting their hot dogs and I greatly enjoyed the lack of post-dinner clean up! We really should cook more using sticks and an open fire! Naturally, dessert was the camping favorite s'mores. YUM!
|Annika roasting her marshmallow|
|Eric and Conor cozied up to the fire|
|Yup, this is how I camp |
(aka fireside happy hour)
|Our future food critic giving her official review|
|Double fisting his s'mores|
|Who needs napkins???|
|Warm toes while munching on a s'more ... what could be better?|
|Conor gives camping a big ol' thumbs up|
We surprised the kids with a rainbow additive to make the fire extra special and fun. The family that the kids befriended earlier in the day saw our fire and wound up hanging out with us for a couple of hours while the kids played and the adults chatted. It was a fun impromptu evening. The family's little boy is 2 and thought our van's automatic door was the best thing ever; every time it opened/closed, he would cackle with laughter. That, of course, highly entertained the adults ... sending us into peals of laughter.
|Our pretty fire!|
Eventually, it was time to hit the sack (quite literally!) and snuggle up for the night. The wind kicked up during the night and made it a bit tricky to get decent sleep, but it wasn't horrible. Fortunately, we stayed nice and warm. I'll take loud wind over being cold any day.
On Saturday morning as we were figuring out our plan for the day, Conor climbed into my lap and said he wasn't feeling well... his tummy and head hurt. I snuggled with him for a bit and when it became clear this wasn't a passing oddity, Eric and I made the decision to abandon the rest of the camping trip and head home a day early. Fortunately, we were able to get a hold of Eric's parents before they made it too far from home. (They were going to come up and spend part of the day at the camp site with us.) Annika was really bummed that we were leaving early, but still understood why. (I placated her by saying we could put the small tent in her room that night so she could "camp" one more night.) Conor slept a bit on the way home and then took a 4 hour nap once we got home. He woke up with a fever and continued aches (confirmed that we made the right choice of coming home early). Fortunately, by the next day, he rebounded and was mostly back to his normal, energetic self. The fever did spike again Sunday night, but didn't last too long.
Not exactly the camping trip we'd planned, but still fun and one we'll remember. Maybe we can go back next summer and have a do-over trip to Deception Pass.
|Sick boy sleeping in the car|