Haning out at campThere is a lot to be said for escaping out of the stagnant 100 degree city heat into the crisp Alpine air. (Crisp due to both the respiration of thousands of Aspens and Pines and plenty of RAIN.) When we arrived at the Jensen family’s campsite it was pouring out buckets of rain. We actually sat in the car and debated about whether or not it was worth venturing out and setting up our brand new (big family size) tent. Side note: tents that you can stand up in make camping 10 times more comfortable. We both were thrilled whenever we needed to scurry out of our bags and realized that we didn’t need to crawl to the pack and play or out the door.

Megan was more thrilled about the enticing mud puddles scattered through our camp.Megan and Zane She and our nephew, Zane, jumped and ran through the puddles with feverish glee. The next morning she emerged from the tent and ran to her favorite big puddle and said (in adorable dismay) “Oh no! The water! The water is all gone!” It was pretty cute. Don’t worry, she still found plenty of ways to get super muddy.

I found plenty of time to read my good book: Cannery Row by John Steinbeck (which is a laid back, clever illustration of a life totally remote to me. Yet told in such a familiar way that you feel like you are hearing a string of anecdotes from a (very funny) friend. This month has been a great one for books. I am happily restraining myself from devouring the last Harry Potter right now and have also loved The Razor’s Edge by W. Sommerset Maughm and Twilight and New Moon by Stephenie Meyer. But back to camping.

Mike’s family takes a few of these excellent trips each summer. It is about as perfect as I can imagine. We have a common area where the moms congregate to read, cook, and of course chat. The kids race around hills and through trees. The dads fish or just relax. What could be better. My favorite moment was when we gathered in the amphitheater to watch some very funny plays done by my nieces and nephews. We also have an excellent site which is owned by our church. The campsites are isolated and have a water tap. Plumbed bathrooms are just a stroll up or down the hill; so you have every The performers convenience but still feel like you are roughing it enough. We usually do some dutch oven cooking which makes it tasty too. Now if only there was a way to avoid the cleanup and it would be perfect!