Monday, October 13, 2008

The Great Outdoors

We had the most beautiful weather for our Cub Scout Pack's annual fall camp-out! Days were warm and slightly breezy, while nights had the perfect amount of chill to make the campfire and snuggly sleeping bags well appreciated. For the first time, Kevin and I slept out both nights!

Little Black Creek Campground, Lumberton, MS was our destination and the drive from home took almost 2 hours. We pulled into the camp ground just as the sun and temperatures were dipping. I hurriedly set up our new tent not far from the fire circle and set off for my dinner duty, browning Texas toast garlic bread over one of the BBQ pits. Spaghetti and meatballs rounded out the meal. The rest of the evening was spent relaxing by the fire and by 10PM a bored little boy was ready for bed. None of his Bear scout buddies were arriving until the next day so going to sleep seemed like the best way to hasten the arrival of morning. Tucked into his sleeping bag, he was soon asleep, but I couldn't figure out which was more comfortable, in or out, and spent most of the night alternating between the two. I missed my mattress and by morning, my back ached! A trip into town for Aleve was put on the day's agenda.

We did a little cheating before bed and in the morning by driving down to the restrooms in the van. Tee-hee! Well,'s uncomfortable walking such a distance when you really have to go!

After a breakfast of donuts, milk and cereal, other campers, including Kevin's best friend, began arriving and filled in the rest of the campground with tents. Morning activities included sack races, egg toss, and tug-of-war. I'd swear those eggs were pre-boiled as they bounced and rolled around in the grass when the kids missed a toss. Lunch consisted of hamburgers, hot dogs, macaroni and cheese, cookies, and chips. Then, it was on to afternoon activities, which were both instructional and fun!

At the first station, the boys were taught elements of survival...what to pack for a wilderness adventure, using a compass and making a map, rope tying, shelter building, and how to make a sling for an injured camper using just sticks and a tarp. Another station taught them the basics of building a fire: the four necessary ingredients (tender, kindling, fuel, and oxygen), what to use to start a fire (matches, magnifying glass, or flint and steel), fire safety, and different fire construction methods. The third activity was canoing...always a favorite! Then they learned how to cook potatoes in the embers of a campfire by peeling, cutting, and wrapping them in foil. Yum! Since Kevin is not a big potato-eater, his leftovers became my afternoon snack. There's something extra tasty about potatoes cooked over a fire.

Saturday nights at the camp-out are always the best! First we enjoyed a dinner of salad, BBQ chicken, and potatoes with all the fixings. Then the kids separated into dens for a scavenger hunt in the dark. A pack tradition, one of the men dresses up in a bear/wolf/where-wolf suit and jumps out at the kids. They scream and carry on and run around like a pack of wolves themselves, even though they've been expecting it all evening. Finally it was time for s'mores, those roasted marshmallow, chocolate, and graham cracker goodies that can never be duplicated at home. No problem getting the kids to bed this evening...they were worn out!

Sunday morning was big breakfast day: pancakes, eggs, bacon, biscuits and grits. Then it was time to clean up the grounds, pack up the tents and gear and head on home. Yep...I was ready. I love the great outdoors, but am so ready to sleep in my own bed again!

A memorable quote:

Kevin (overheard while he and Christian were playing inside our tent): "Let's pretend like we're relaxing!"

LOL! Why pretend?! Isn't that what camp-outs are for?!


Petunia said...

Sounds like you all had a good time. Mmmmm...s'mores! Yum!

Petunia said...

haha, too funny I just posted on my new ringtone!
I couldn't live one more day with the 12 yucky choices that Apple gives you!