July 19th, 2004


camping 2004

Camping... summer 2004.

So on thursday evening, as I clamoured to get the boys over to Geo's soccer practise... and I completely rang my bell as I carried a car-cup-o-coffee into my car seat... smacking the top of my head on the door frame. No actual blood (thanks to the weather stripping) but lemmi tell ya... stars and blackness...

The only relationship that has to camping is that when I was loading the car to leave on Friday morning... it was bell-ringing-episode-two as I totally c-c-c-c-cracked my head (same exact spot) on the trunk latch.  I sat on the laneway holding my head, feeling like an idiot and wondering if I had a three day headache coming on.  Looking up, all I could see were thunder clouds and low ceiling clouds zooming around ... I'm just saying... Z and I were packing for a camping trip with a 6 and 8 year old...

We packed up - trying desperately to minimize our packing, and still ending up with a car-topper totally filled with gear, the trunk with four of those groovy fold up chairs that are everywhere now... a cooler and a dry food chest and backpacks of clothes etc.  A mommy, a daddy and two little boys... require far to much gear to go on a wee camping trip. Each year we become more efficient... But dude... you gotta have the big ass bug tent to go over the picnic table. (etc.)

Our destination was, thankfully, close... Fitzroy Harbour Provincial Park is about a 35 minute drive... and no better or worse than a provincial park hours away into the center of Ontario.  So ... score. Fitzroy is a lovely family camp ground.

The short story... is that by the time a couple of advil had kicked in, and the kids were sleeping soundly under a star strewn sky, Z and I were relaxing with the notion that the gods were with us.  Absolutely nothing went wrong on the trip. :D  We had a great day at the beach, went on several "explores", stayed up late pointing out constellations and satellites and looking at stars with binoculars, eating and generally enjoying ourselves. There was, astonishingly, not a single drop of rain, despite the dire predictions of every weather service on the planet. 

Success on the campground is all about fulfilling your roles... and while Z takes care of laying out the tent and making sure the kids stuff is spot on organized, I take care of meals... So my kitchen is a propane camp stove and I seem to make coffee c o n s t a n t l y.

Campfires and kids... I mean, once the sun gets even close to low, Edward is jonesing for a fire...
He can go into a fire trance in a heartbeat.

You might think it's a guy thing, but don't be fooled by her reading in the fire pit pictures...
Z is the true burninator in our gang. 

Edward kinda decided he was Yoda... thanks, in part, to giving them glow sticks at night to play with and take into the tent at bed time.  The result was this very over-the-top little act...  Um, we're talking Yoda circa "attack of the clones" freakish, fight'en, zing zinging yoda...

We simply had yoda in our midst and had to accept it.

The beach was grand... clean and plenty of trucked in sand... (haha).  Lots of people and freezing, ass-squeaking, water... but it was a hot day. We had a pick-ee-nic lunch at the beach...

There was this interesting, and unheralded, piece of history right down a dark path near our campsite.  The kids, of course, discovered it first...

Someone unearthed the headstones of graves from 1840 - 1850 out here... and remounted their broken remains into a small monument in the middle of freaking nowhere... I snagged shaky video in a blair witch mood the moment I saw it...  Didn't phase the boys... at least not until nightfall..

The trogdor team of fire pokers was fresh out of fire-poking sticks! So I set off with the boys and a flashlight to hunt down a couple of new ones. It's like 11:pm. We hit the path that passed the grave... never got near the monument.  I saw a likely stick off the path and stepped away from the boys towards the stick... one step... two... three... and then there was this snorty... deep kinda noise from up the hill of us.  What the boys saw: Dad walks into the light beam, leaving us standing in the dark and we hear this wretched beast like noise up the hill... (quietly)"Daaaaaaaaaad?" But Dad grabbed the stick he was after and came back muttering about silly raccoons or squirrels or whatever and we made jokes about the fire on the way back to camp.  What the daddy saw: Stepped up to get the stick... heard the noise... wet my pants (ok, not) and wanted to scream like a junior school girl with her hand stuck in mix-master... said nothing... and went back to camp.  bwaahahaha... geez.  No idea what the noise was but who cares? No gun... run away...

Thank the powers for tiki torches...

... and they make the coolest looking wicks.

We went on a long explore yesterday... (see yoda above)... and I came across a lonely daisy so I took a picture... (it was somehow special)
And ended up in all kinds of wilderness and watery places... worrying over kids being too close the edge of things and doing your best to say "sure, ok..." to as many of the requests to jump off this, or climb over that as possible.

... and let me just remind you... it's freaking hot in the wilderness. (and a chance to actually be in a picture... you know, so you know I was there...:D)

Oh, and "family campground campers" that we are... we were only too pleased to be across a nicely kept field (and the related septic system but we wont talk about that) from the campers "washing station". :D disgusting showers... no matter how much they clean them and buggy washrooms... but warm water on demand is a freaking joy and you know it. :D

That's (in the way distance) ... Geo and Edward coming back from the slightly less distant water source for clean up water (we have to bring big honking plastic bottles of drinking water). They're carrying a pot full of water between them... splashing themselves, getting soaked and having a blast.

Back in the "bug tent" aka our kitchen... there was early morning Uno, and all manner of shaded, bug free moments. 

All in all... we had a grand time... and managed to not break anyone or anything... but man... it's going to be several years before I stop getting tired out by going on a relaxing camping trip. :D

We packed up this morning and came home... Got home and and within hours... it rained. Then the power went out... so we did to... had dinner at Mc Deaths to please the goobers... who start summer day camp tomorrow.

Ok... all done.

Monday, July 19.

(ok... he's doing that buck teeth thing on purpose... :D little nut bar...)

Good morning!! :D Lovely day huh... :D

So there's sunshine and beautiful air wrapping the world outside the windows... or, as they say on the radio... Thunderstorms and rain. Freaking weather people are idiots. The worlds biggest, fastest, and most complex computers are pressed into service to support the process of meteorology. All that geek and they totally forget to stick their damn heads out the window and look around. "There's a 60% chance of thunder storms today, with sunny patches and a possible accumulation of 18 millimetres of rain... " Yeah right... and there's a 99% chance that you're a dick head and have no idea what you're talking about. It's summer. It's gonna rain every now and then. Wow. Wait... lemmi guess... it's gonna get dark tonight too.

Our boys headed off to sport camp today. They spend the next week at camp and getting a) all tuckered out (weeee) and b) having endless buckets of fun. The camp was actually set up by one of the teachers at their school... years ago... it's a big business now but it rocks. :D

~ blue ftls
~ dk blue dockers... go'head... just try to wrinkle 'em. :D
~ red p-z golf shirt... (clearly getting my moneys worth out of this shirt...)
~ phone up a dude and get the password for the software they gave us to try... um... should'have maybe thought of this A WEEK AGO... grrr.
~ step back into the world of MS Excel macros, math, radar graphs and unlikely coolness...
~ tonight? continue trying to download the missed saturday epi of BB5.
~ to compliment razberee on her hair cut... oh wait... already did. :D
~ for the peace of a strong family to hold the world of wbahner together. You're a good man Ward...
~ and a few moments of wish'en for my pal dpaul007 as he gets things sorted out...
~ that ehme would not scratch!!!!
~ for all kinds of success to find no1topaz as she starts out on a little project... (cool play on words there eh Misha? "little" project... ar ar ar ... ok ok sorry).

// mini rant.
So here's the thing... the government ... all of it... federal and provincial... keep shouting about day care and dollars for day care and transfer payments from the feds to the provinces and new "spots"in day cares opening and quotas and ... and ... and ... and a freaking endless stream of politicizing about fucking day care. What the mother fuck is wrong with people taking care of their own kids? No... I'm not against day care... and I totally respect that most people these days have to "both work" in order to make ends meet. Fine. But why does the government have to spend a fat-funk load of my tax dollars on setting up day care centers when that only ends up being a punk ass institution that will no-doubt end up on the evening news.
Am I totally in the dark? What is wrong with private day care services? When we needed it... we took advantage of day care with a woman down the street that provided a service to a few families. These people are the answer - in my opinion - and they should be getting big honking tax breaks and incentives to run in-home day care.... they should be rewarded and praised. And you can stop taxing me more and building little pre-pre-school schools for babies.
AND... because it's the thing that REALLY BURNS MY ASS... where the fucking hell is my tax break for biting the bullet as a family and electing to do without a bunch of income by having a stay at home mom. I have two children and my wife has pretty much been a mom for their entire pre-full-day school lives (she intends, as has been our plan all along, to go back to work when both kids are in full time day programs at school). And there has never been a single dollar of tax relief on my tax return as we struggled to make ends meet in this family.
Soooo... the message is... You will be punished if you dare to try and raise your own children.
Screw that you rat faced politicians.
Go ahead and build your day care institutions and raise my taxes to pay for it. You'll get what you pay for baybee... and you paid me NOTHING... so please expect a healthy does of that in return.
//ok done!
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