The Annual Pumpkin Pics

Each year we get our Halloween pumpkins from the NC State Farmers Market and have the boys sit for a picture with their pumpkins. This may be the first year there was no drama at all. I suppose we are at that magic age now (6 and 8) where sitting for a picture can be painless. It's a far cry from the several years ago where only the baby made it in the picture because big brother was wailing. I love these rascals.

Camping at Cape Lookout

While posting about our camping trip to Blue Bear Mountain Campground, I searched through the blog trying to find documentation of our previous camping trips. I never shared about them! So over the next few days I'll be posting some pictures and comments from some of our past adventures.

First up, Cape Lookout! One theme that seems to run through all our trips is that we do them on the fly. Often our under-preparation gets the best of us. We planned to camp at the beach over Memorial Day Weekend 2015, but we didn't consider that everyone else was doing the exact same thing. All the campgrounds were booked except for Cape Lookout. All the ferries to take cars to Cape Lookout were booked. So, we decided we would just carry our belongings. We did not pack light at all. Not at all. We didn't even have most things in bags, so we stopped at Walmart for trash bags... absolutely classy. But we made it, and hiking on the beach absolutely blows. It took us a couple trips from the bath house to the dunes where we pitched our tent, since the kids (4 and 7 at the time) were incapable of walking in the side while simultaneously carrying something in their arms.

The other way we failed to prepare was with a cooler. I'd packed Nutella sandwiches, but when we opened them the next day, they were greenish looking. Hungrily, we stopped in Beaufort for seafood on the way home. On the way to the Dockhouse Restaurant, a sweet veteran group was giving out free hotdogs, so we actually pre-fed the kids so Joe and I could eat in peace. We may have pre-fed ourselves as well, but my memory is hazy on that detail.

Dockhouse Restaurant

Blue Bear Mountain Campground

This past weekend, we ventured to Todd, NC to stay at Blue Bear Mountain Campground. We usually stay at state parks, but when I went online to look for a last minute site, everything was booked. Some friends of ours had recently been to BBMC, so I figured why not call up the number and see if there was anything left.

To give you some background on our camping experiences, Joe and I both grew up camping. Joe did more backpacking with Scouts, and I did more car camping with church families. I also love backpacking, but as a family with young kids, we haven't done any hike-in camping... except for an accidental hike-in at Cape Lookout, which we weren't prepared for, but we both prefer going to the mountains and being surrounded by a tall canopy of trees.

BBMC is just north of Boone and has short hiking trails, well kept grounds and facilities and super hospitable staff. Our site was down a grassy hill from the music stage (they have an annual music fest), and it was fairly private with woods on the back side. I should have done more research and selected a "remote" site, because when we went hiking the next day, there were some really sweet spots back in the woods that would have felt more like the rugged camping we were both used to and offered more privacy. The staff actually offers to drive your gear to the site if you want the remote experience but not the labor. It's a great way to ease the family into camping if you don't have all the proper gear for a hike-in experience.

The boys had a fun time. There was plenty of fire-poking and tree-climbing. I managed to squeeze in a couple minutes of bug observing as well. On the way home, we took the long route and drove through Elk Knob state park and Meat Camp, NC, where we stopped for lunch and creek-hopping.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...