I’m really late on getting this out….so it’ll be the short version.  Although now that I’ve finished typing it, it’s not such a short version after all!

This year we tacked on an extra couple days to our usually 5-day camping trip.  We typically arrive on a Wednesday and leave on Sunday, but this year we decided to camp Monday through Sunday.  (Next year we’ll camp Sunday through Saturday).  We reserved our “usual” spot which we enjoy because if the spaciousness.  And no, I’m not going to tell you what site number that is.  But it can hold a 34′ trailer, a 20′ long carport, still have room for a couple tents and there’s room on the other side of the trailer as well!

Jim’s mom usually goes with us, but she couldn’t make it this year.  Jake and his kids have joined us the past three years and this year they would be joining us again.

Monday: arrival day.  We got there shortly after noon and our site was still occupied so we helped Jake get his site set up.  It was REALLY wet when we first got there, raining and all, but it cleared up and ended up being a nice day.

Here’s a picture of the doggies all tied up waiting patiently for us to get everything situated:

The first thing we did was unload the bikes so the kids could start riding.

Remember, it was really wet outside…Brooke ended up with a mud stripe up her back!

We finally got to take over our spot and get the trailer set up.  We borrowed a carport this year to act as our sheltered kitchen and dining space.

It was great!  Here’s some pics of how that turned out.

And yes, it’s a full size carport.  Here’s a picture from the backside to show how it compares to the size of our trailer:

Tuesday: nice day!  We did some fishing and just enjoyed the day relaxing and kicking back.  This was Brooke’s first time fishing, ever.  She had wanted Papa Bob and Jim to take her sometime and when Papa passed that was one of the first things she mentioned- that he wasn’t going to be there for her first time fishing.  So she chose some photographs to take along with her.  She also found some fishing lure earrings at a garage sale (the lady made jewelry) and she wore those too, for extra luck.  She ended up catching a fish!

Oh wait, BEFORE the trip both girls did some practice casting in our backyard:

When we first got to the lake, Brooke went for a ride with Jake on the pontoon boat Jim brought:

Jake ended up giving all the kids “rides” around the lake.  Meanwhile, the dogs were playing “king of the hill”:

Brooke finally did some fishing with her dad:

Eventually all the kids joined in:

Brookie caught a fish….we caught two total.  Stuck them in the winch for the ride back to the campground, then Jake cooked them over the campfire:

Did she like eating the fish she caught?

Wednesday: another nice day!  Almost too warm!  We rode our bikes to the Fort Stevens Historical area and enjoyed seeing some sights we hadn’t seen before.

And of course the obligatory “Jeep” photo:

And a nice photo op:

On our way out of the park we encountered a woman and young child locked in the public restroom!  SCARY!  There were people outside the door trying to break in without success.  The door knob had broken and there was no “unlock” on the inside, either!  I ended up calling the Fort Stevens State Park number for them to send someone with the key and/or tools to get those poor people out of there!

That afternoon we took the dogs swimming.  It was Nikita’s first time in the water, and she loved it!

Here’s a video clip of one of the first times we sent her out:

That night we all rode our bikes to the beach to enjoy the sunset.  It had been so sunny all day, not a cloud in sight, so we were sure the sunset would be stunning.   Our bums were uber sore from all the bike riding but we knew it would be worth the pain.  Until we got through the trees and saw a bed of clouds over the horizon.  Doh!

Oh well.  Can’t win them all.

Thursday: a rainy day.  The guys spent the day crabbing and I hung back with the kids and we played cards and tried to stay as dry as possible.

It was decently dry in the late afternoon, so went made a teeny campfire and kept just enough wood on it to keep it burning.

Then the kids talked me into taking them for a bike ride to the beach.  Sore bums and all.  My elbow was a bit sore from I don’t know what….but alas, we went for the ride.

It was suuuuuper windy at the beach.

It was like getting sandblasted.  Didn’t matter where I stood. At one point I sat down with my back to the wind and after about 3 minutes I looked down and there was sand building up against my rear-end!  I was not having fun.

But they were.

As soon as we got back to camp we all took showers.  Yuck.  I couldn’t lick my lips without scraping my tongue.

Friday: I managed to injure my elbow with all the bike riding- poor posture or something like that.  No more bike riding for me.

We weren’t sure what to do with the rain so we opted to take the kids to go see the movie “Brave”.  It stopped raining right before we left, and of course as we exited the movie theater we could see the pavement was dry- it didn’t rain at all while we were in there!  Sure enough, right after we got back to camp it started raining again.  Ugh.  We nurtured our bug bites (look at Brookie’s arm!):

Drank some whisky:

And the kids decorated their bikes again for a night-time ride around the campground:

Jim’s cousin Todd came to spend the weekend with us, arriving pretty late at night.

Saturday: No heading into town to avoid the rain.  We learned our lesson the day before.  So we decided to go fishing in the rain.  Pretty much an all day thing.  Or most of the day.  I was fine as long as it wasn’t raining too bad.

And all that fishing sure tuckers a girl out:

But it also makes for good eats:

Sunday: Pack up and head home day.  Whew!  What a week!