Tag Archives: camping

We survived!!!

18 Sep

I am here to report that operation twin-infant camping trip was a success!

I was worried on the morning of our departure that it was going to be too chilly. My fears were intensified when I reached our destination and it was still chilly and cloudy. I had nagging thoughts in the back of my head that told me maybe I should leave and save this for another time. No. I soldiered on. And I am glad I did. The biggest thing I was scared of – unhappy babies in the middle of the night – turned out not being a problem at all. I didn’t sleep well but it was not because of the girls, my own unfounded worry kept up me most of the night. So how did all my gear hold up?

Pack and Play – did not use, we ended up clearing out the back of my Jeep, folding all the seats down and the girls and I slept in there. I was concerned about the tempurature going into the 40’s. It did, and we were all fine.

Beco Baby Carriers – WONDERFUL, well worth the purchase price even though I got mine second hand. I got a lot of second looks hiking around camp with a baby on my front and a baby on my back. I didn’t want to mess with having them nap in the tent and I knew they would sleep while I walked. Worked like a charm. Babies got sleep, I got exercise, we kept each other warm. Plus, plus, plus. The carriers worked well in the evening too before they went to sleep. The babies are pretty consistent with bedtime between 6 pm and 7 pm. Obviously, they were not going to sleep without me, so a friend and I wore them while they slept, and when I was ready all of us went to bed at the same time. Perfect.

JJ Cole Bundleme – used as a pillow for me, because I forgot mine. It was nice to have the option but I found it wasn’t necessary for us.

Old Navy Fleece Suits – LOVE. They were the cutest things I ever saw in the woods. Adorable and kept them toasty warm. I am looking forward to using those suits more this fall. I can also use them in the winter if I want to walk my dog and have them in the stroller.

Our overnight camping trip was a huge success. They were happy the whole time and did great in different surroundings. I am looking forward to next year because we will be going a lot more often. I think our first trip will be June. I almost want to get more of those suits for next year because even camping in June can get a little chilly in the mountains.

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I must be crazy. Or I love camping that much.

14 Sep

My husband and I are pretty seasoned tent campers.  For years we would make 4 or 5 camping trips a year, from April to October.  Tomorrow I am planning on taking our baby girls who will be 7 months, or 35 weeks, to be exact.

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I have been debating whether to go overnight for weeks but officially decided three days ago that I was going to make the plunge and actually go for it.  Reason being, I took them out there for the day back in June.  It was a little rough at times but mostly, I think, due to the heat.   I really wanted to stay because I enjoy spending time with my friends.  The drive back SUCKED.  I drove an hour through Virginia with no problems, as soon as I crossed the Maryland line they woke up, screaming.  I was on I-495 looking for a place to pull over, not easy.  Even though I pulled over and fed them, they still cried the whole way home, which was another hour.

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Now that they are a little older, other people can actually hold them and play with them.  Free babysitting for me!  I have the pack and play ready for naps and hopefully for bedtime.  I don’t like co-sleeping, the twincesses have taken my “night abuse” trait as my husband calls it.  They kick me all night and wiggle and don’t sleep well.  We are still breastfeeding, so I don’t have to worry about bottles and formula.  Packaged sqooshie thingys will cover the solid food part that we are doing.  I have two (actually four) awesome baby carriers – a Beco Gemini and Beco Butterfly – that will be awesome for carting my twosome around when we go hiking or just for being around the campsite.

The thing that still scares me, but not horribly, is the overnight part.  The girls are not sleeping through the night yet, they still wake up for at least 2 feedings a night, and sometimes they wake up more than that just for comfort.  I realized, it will be hard to be much worse than it already has at night – I pray I don’t eat those words tomorrow night!  So, I did a lot of brainstorming.  I am going to layer these babies up in their night-clothes.  Age/size appropriate PJs, under 12 month fleece PJs, under an Old Navy fleece suit.  I am so excited Old Navy sells those! It has covered hands and mittens and a hood! If they are still cold, I am going to use the JJ Cole  Bundle Me as little sleeping bags, and I am bringing every blanket in our house.

Oh, and bringing Murphy, our beloved Weimaraner.  Gotta bring him too.  Our dog is such a great pup.  On one camping occasion, Murphy and I were hiking around these little lakes at the campsite.  I had a frisbee that floated so I started tossing it into the water.  Poor Murphy is a horrible swimmer, he has to touch the bottom with his back legs while his front legs smack the waters surface, he looks so weird, but I guess because he is so muscular he doesn’t float so swimming is not his strength.  Because he is of the pointer breed, one time I threw the frisbee and it floated out into the middle of this lake, I called Murphy to me but he was going after the frisbee, on a mission!  That dog went completely under water when it got too deep for him to touch the bottom, I started taking my shoes off to go save him!  Well him came back up to shallow ground – but  because he was on a mission he went out again!  I couldn’t stop him from getting the frisbee.  That was the last time I did that, I didn’t want to push our luck.  I don’t know why it’s a fond memory – I have so many with my dog.  I am looking forward to making those memories with my daughters.  So good or bad at least I will have something to say about our weekend.

Wish me lots and lots luck!!!

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Daily Prompt: Blogger With a Cause 4 Wheel 2 Heal

3 Sep

Daily Prompt: Blogger With a Cause.

If I could completely throw myself into a cause it would be my husbands non-profit organization, or NPO, 4 Wheel 2 Heal (http://www.4w2h.org).  Their mission is to take wounded and disabled, American, Veterans out in off-roading and camping excursions. Great, you say, maybe not very impressed however in my experience the camping and off-roading trips help tremendously with healing men injured in the war.

Most of the injured Vets I have met are Marines.  You think of a Marine being the toughest of the tough.  They go anywhere and will do anything to complete their mission.  They are fearless, strong, skilled and intimidating.  If you take that same Marine  and he gets injured in an explosion and ends up missing a1014013_10151513856851161_1456575499_n

limb, or two, or even three; it’s like his identity has become injured too. The activities these men used to do pre-injury like camping, hunting, hiking, now seem like activities that they will never do again. (Picture Keith Gillan Photography 2013, my husbands heavily modified  Jeep Cherokee being driven by a Warrior at the PA All Breeds Jeep Show)

When my husband and his buddies take these men out, you can almost see them change over a weekend.  Things that seemed like they could never do, are things that are mastered once again.  It is the most inspiring thing to witness – especially when you see it happen in front of you.  Every single veteran they have taken out has had a blast.  They take them out make it an experience they will never forget.

Back to original question.  If I could do anything for my husbands NPO, it would be to assist with marketing and with camping/volunteer duties.  One of my husbands downfalls is he tries to do it all – then he doesn’t get to enjoy all the work that he has done.  Helping him with those things would relieve a lot of the pressure he has to keep 4 Wheel 2 Heal going; however, because of the twins, I do not get a lot of extra time – or rather have enough time to do it all.  My husband also has a unique gift, he can strike up a conversation with anyone, and people really remember him and love him.  I wish I had his gift, I am a lot more quiet than he is.  We have not gone camping with the girls yet, hopefully they will get the chance in a few weeks – but again, I have to care for them and I won’t be able to devote time to volunteering for the organization.  Hopefully, 4 Wheel 2 Wheel continues to grow and when the babies get older I will be able to assist more.  Check out their Facebook page and website to see all the cool stuff they have been able to do. Existing for such a short period, the guys have made great strides and I know they will continue to help wounded heroes.