Category Archives: Camping

Fancy Breakfast Friday: Camping 2.0


Remember about 3 weeks ago when I said I had officially covered all the versions of blueberry and cornmeal and I had found the solution and now I could move on?  Well my friend Laura commented “but have you tried the Martha Stewart ones?” and I didn’t answer, but in the back of my head I thought, hmmm.  Then when I was eating cold oats on a camping trip and looking at my phone I saw on instagram that she had made the Martha Stewart muffins with some sort of fancy tall muffin maker and they were beautiful and glorious.  I thought, OK, fine, I see how it is.  Now I have to make those.

But when I looked up the recipe I thought, “actually that looks like a hassle” and I made a different version of the Martha Stewart muffins, oh, and I was out of flour, so I had to use whole wheat.  Why was I out of flour?  Because Luke made these pancakes earlier in the week, and they were totally amazing. I would have just photographed them and called them my own, but I have already made them.  Luke did a great job, these were so yummy.

IMG_0398But still, we were out of flour.  These muffins were nothing to write home about, so I won’t bother sharing the recipe that I didn’t really follow.  I did allow everyone to pick out their own cereal for the camping trip, but we were at the new Lucky’s and I said the cereal had to cost $3.00 or less so the boys choices were limited.  I had already purchased Dave’s fave – Captain Crunch.  I had an idea about making cookies with captain crunch in them, but there wasn’t any left.

Fortunately I packed three boxes of cereal and a dozen muffins because guess what I forgot?  Lunch.  When we go to the campground I started to make sandwiches and all I had was bread.  No one complained about cereal for lunch though.

I did serve an amazing dinner of meatball bahn mi subs from cook smarts that were seriously the best things ever.

Long story short, we camped for 10 days, then were home for 3 days, then camped again for 1 day, and had a fancy breakfast of muffins and cereal.  Oh, and we saw a lot of shooting stars.  It was quite beautiful.  And cold.  But also beautiful.  Even with forgetting lunch, and not bringing warm enough clothes, it was way better than last year.





Fancy Breakfast Friday: Camping

This week’s late FBF post is sponsored by Mother Nature, specifically RAIN.


Last Friday Dave dug a trench to divert the rain around our tent and our picnic table while the boys and I ate bowls of Honey Bunches of Oats.  We camped for 10 days, and I have to say, Dave was the real star of the camping breakfast scene.  There is just something about camping that makes me not want to make breakfast.  Dinner, I can sometimes handle, and I did make these pulled pork tacos the first night.  This was easy because I had made the pulled pork and the pickled onions at home the night before.  I was so hungry by the time we ate that everyone is just lucky to still be alive, and yet I paused a moment for this photo before digging in.


For breakfast, I packed oats, yogurt, hard boiled eggs, cereal, milk, pancake mix, bagels and cream cheese.  I was more than happy to put milk and oats together the night before and eat them cold for breakfast because I was too hungry to heat them up and too lazy to want to wash extra dishes.  Others found this to be gross.  But one night I did plan ahead and cook all the bacon, and Dave cooked eggs and made breakfast sandwiches.  (Bagel, cheese, egg, bacon.)  Those were a huge hit and our go-to breakfast for the rest of the trip.  Dave also made pancakes one morning, and after everyone had had one, I offered to make the rest while Dave ate. Of course I had to fancy it up by adding some oats and sliced almonds but then Dave started to micromanage by telling me, “Make sure to wait until it’s all the way cooked before you flip it.”  To which I said, “Um, no duh,  I know how to make pancakes.”  And then I flipped it too soon and it was a huge disaster.  I had to then make this redemption pancake that no one even wanted.


It was so pretty.  I ate it for lunch.  I’ll have another camping breakfast for you next week because we camped last night too.


Planning Ahead For The Perseids

I’d like you to think that I must be the most organized amateur stargazer/parent-educater/camper out there, because I have spent the last week and a half planning ahead for next year’s Perseid  meteor shower.  It’s 50 weeks away people, haven’t you started planning?!?!  

What actually happened, was that part of the “Last Week At Home With Mom End of Summer Extravaganza” included a spontaneous mid week camping trip to see the meteor shower.  By spontaneous, I mean that I had the idea about a week in advance but I did not make a reservation, or any concrete plans, or even pack until 10 minutes before we left.  Would we even be able to see the meteor shower from our campsite, or if would we be surrounded by tall trees?  I figured with the lake there, we could find a spot on the south side of the lake for some sort of view.   Would we need a reservation in the middle of the week?  I was sure that there would be spots if we left right after Lukes’s doctors appointment at 11:30 am / piano lessons at 3:00 / short track races at 5:00.  Poor Jack competed in the end of short track season short track costume contest and managed not to die of heat exaustion only to be told that even though he was the only person there in a costume, the prizes wouldn’t be awarded until hours later.  (We were so relived to see a pic from later of an adult rider in a very elaborate and fancy costume.)  

We left immediately after short track and stopped for dinner in Nederland.  I told Jack he could pick out whatever breakfast cereal he wanted as a costume contest consolation prize, so after dinner and a trip the the grocery store  we were back on the road and headed for an 8:30 pm arrival time at Brainard Lake.  No campsites!!

No problem I thought, Camp Dick is right around here we’ll see if there are spots available there.  But instead, I started driving to Rainbow Lakes.  It was a long, narrow, bumpy, twisty road, and it was starting to get dark. Jack started to worry about cannibals because of a fantastic and true campfire story that I like to tell about the time we were almost eaten by cannibals.  Once we finally got to the sign that said, “Rainbow Lakes 1.8 miles” I remembered where we were and that we needed a high clearance vehicle to make it the rest of the way.  I know Dave loves me, but I also know that if I wreck the van, our relationship is over.  Still, I thought for a minute about whether we should keep going.  The giant lake in front of us , and the end of my marriage helped me decide to turn around.  Even though the boys offered to walk through the lake to check the depth, it didn’t seem like a good idea in the dark, with cannibals potentially lurking about.

We turned around and started driving back towards home, which, unfortunately was the opposite direction from Camp Dick.  I found a spot where my phone worked and pulled over to call Dave.  While I was talking to him a car pulled over and a guy got out with a giant flashlight and walked slowly over to us.  Slowly enough for Jack to let out a frenzied, “CANNIBAL,CANNIBAL, CANNIBAL!”  I rolled down the window and said, “We’re fine, thanks.”  And he said, with derision, “Then turn on your hazards.”  I thought that was weird because the reason I didn’t turn on my hazards was that I didn’t need anyone to come help me.  (I was in a pull out, way to the side, off the road.)  Anywho, I turned on my hazards and listened to Dave’s suggestions of where there was open camping in Nederland, and I was almost sold on the idea until he said, “Just don’t camp near any herion addicts.  Or, I guess, meth addicts would be worse.”

We had forgotten 3 things on this trip: Pillows, flashlights, and the dog.  We decided we could live without pillows, hoped maybe the flashlights were in there somewhere, and thought not having the dog was actually going to simplify things.  But then I wished she was there to protects us from the cannibals.

Long story short (too late) we went home. 

I woke the boys up at 3:00 am and we went to the park with a blanket and some smore’s goldfish and watched the meteor shower while we tried to stay warm and comfortable on the sidewalk.  

It’s an official “family memory now” but I think I can do a better job next year.


Here are some new terms, coined by Jack on our camping trip this past weekend.

Aerodymanic:  Jack leans over the handle bars and pedals like mad to become aerodymanic on his bicycle.

Stun-scream: When you sneak up behind Jack to apply sunscreen, he emits a rage-filled stun scream.

The Sands of Time

Sand.  I always assumed that pockets are filled with sand over the course of the day through extreme and rugged playing.  From wallowing in sandboxes, and rolling through dirt.


But I learned otherwise on a hike through the Black Hills in Custer State Park.


We drive the Needles Highway one day and did a hike to the Cathedral Spires.


Jack picked up a piece of wood that was slightly curved, perfect for scooping sand, and there was a lot of sand and dirt to scoop.  Jack was a very good hiker that day, almost too determined, not wanting any help over some of the serious rock scrambles.  But on the way down, he asked me to carry his piece of wood filled with sand, because he was having trouble keeping the sand from spilling out on the way down.  I said he should just dump the sand and then fill it up again at the bottom of the hike.  Logical.  Subtext: Please lose that piece of wood on the way down.   Then I turned forward and started walking again, confident that Jack would dump the sand and follow.  After a few steps, I turned around to see him using the wood like a funnel, and filling his pockets with sand.   Filling his pockets with sand, on purpose.   New insight into the mind of a boy.

Seems odd to have a post about Jack and his antics, but Jack wasn’t really into posing that day.  As you can see.

I Want You! To Enjoy These Fireworks.

The imagination fireworks were tolerable on July 4th because we has already seen a great fireworks show on the 2nd.  We were driving around Silverthorne and we passed a sign that said, “Never Forget.”  Sort of vague, huh?  We wondered what we weren’t supposed to forget.   The Declaration of Independence? The Revolutionary Way? 9/11?  Pearl Harbor, The Alamo?  I read an article later in the day that said the fireworks display was a tribute to The Troops, about whom we should never forget.    That’s an especially good reminder for me, because I ran into one soldier in particular this past weekend who said, “I’m still waiting for those cookies.”  Oops!  (Disclaimer:  I support the troops.)

First we were going to try to see the fireworks from our campsite, then we briefly considered going with friends to their friend’s house, but then we remembered we had the dog, and the bikes, and maybe no locks, so we went back to plan A.  But the kids thought they were going to miss the show and everyone was stressed out and crying when we just decided to drive right down into the middle of the Support the Troops celebration, and park ourselves and our crazy dog on a blanket by Lake Dillon.   Actually we sat on half the blanket, with Luke on Dave’s lap and Jack on mine, and the blanket folded over us.  Because it was dark, and freezing, and windy.   And Lucy is crazy, so we found a spot way off to the side, not even facing the direction where all the rest of the people were.  There was even a stand of trees in between us and the 4th of July Never Forget Celebration, so we figured the fireworks would be on the other side of the trees.  So we snuggled, and we watched the boats and we waited for the fireworks to start.   We didn’t know how Lucy would react since last year the fireworks were rained out, but BOOM, all of a sudden the show started, and we had the prime viewing spot.  And then it was SWARM, SWARM!  We were suddenly surrounded on all sides by people rushing to the prime spot to get the best view.  Turns out, Lucy does not like fireworks, and she started shaking, so we squished her body between Dave and I, and her head between Luke and Dave.  No time to act ferocious to random dogs, too busy trembling.

At this point, the wind stopped, and I realized we’d get through the fireworks without Lucy causing a scene,and we had a good view, and everything was right in the world.  Except, I was sort of sitting on a stick, and the way Jack was leaning on me was sort of uncomfortable,  and I couldn’t straighten my back at all.  But we were all close and snuggly, and this was the sort of fireworks show that stands out.  Because the best way to enjoy fireworks, is to be constantly berated about how much you should be enjoying them.   It was really dark, and I could barely move my neck, so I didn’t get to see who was talking, but I was guessing it was a drunken lady, with a deep and commanding voice.  It went like this.


Crowd: Awkward silence.



Crowd:  Murmuring


Me: giggle


Random person in crowd:  We’re trying!


Me: Not me, I’m from Canada.


Dave: Is this going to be one of those stories we tell forever?


Luke: And China, where fireworks were invented.

And, scene.

Yes, the July 2nd fireworks show was one we will never forget.



>I had the most delicious Gin and Tonic of my life last weekend when we were camping. I enjoyed it so much, I had to take this picture. Turns out, it was made with Hendrick’s gin. Slightly above my normal price point. I went to Liquor Mart and asked, “If I normally think gin is yucky, but I loved this, what can I get that is almost as good?” The answer was, “Just look for this on sale. You are going to be disappointed with everything else.”

But since it was mere hours before the season premiere of Mad Men, I didn’t have time to wait for a sale. And it was a special occasion…

I made my gin and tonic and then realize the upstairs TV no longer had AMC. So I tried to switch out the cable box from the basement with unfortunate results. Long story short, I poured my G&T into a jelly jar, screwed on the lid and biked to a friends house to watch Mad Men.

I felt like my Grandma, who always brought a pre-mixed martini to our house in a Lawry’s spice jar. Turning into my Grandma is a good thing. Totally worth the price of that bottle of gin.

>Buffalo Creek

>Last weekend we camped at Buffalo Creek, in the group site, with a ton of other people. You can’t tell from this view though, can you?

Close up of nap time:

And here is Jack with his twin from daycare. The school sends pictures of the kids each week, and sometimes it is hard to tell who is who.

>Colorado Trail

We dropped Dave off at Waterton Canyon on Friday afternoon so he could start the Colorado trail. He met us at Buffalo Creek on Friday night and we camped Friday and Saturday. Dave took Saturday to rehydrate and rest because Friday was brutally hot. That was good news for me because it meant I had all day to mountain bike with the ladies. I had more fun biking than I can ever remember. I can’t really remember what it was like to mountain bike before I had kids, so maybe that was fun too – but since then I have always like the idea of biking, and I have done it, but I always felt like it was something I sort of had to do, and had to be back by a certain time, and I always sort of suffered through it. I don’t know if was the lack of a deadline for my return so Dave could have his turn, or the weather, or the awesomeness of the trail, or the good company, or the fact that maybe the Wii Active 30 day challenge got my legs in shape, or a combination of all of the above, but it was awesome.

Sunday, I met Grandmom and Grandad on I-70 and dropped the kids off with them and they headed to Breckenridge to meet Dave for Sunday night dinner.

Lucy and I headed home for some girl time. More on that tomorrow!

Follow Dave’s progress here.