As a child, going on vacation meant we would all pile in the RV my parents had borrowed from my grandparents and head off for several weeks each summer to camp at a state or national park. For a family of seven this, I imagine, was the most economical (and probably the only) way we could go on a family vacation. But regardless of the reasons why we vacationed like this (you know, as apposed to taking all five of their children on long flights to places like Disney World), most importantly, we always loved it and had a great time. Some of my fondest childhood memories are from those trips all cramped inside the RV, only to be set free into the great outdoors to play in rivers and creeks, and hike to waterfalls, and climb enormous rocks and trees. It gave my siblings and I a sense of freedom and independence that we couldn't find within the confines of our carefully planned suburban community made up of asphalt, concrete, manicured yards and stucco houses. To this day the smell of pine trees and campfire in the crisp morning air gives me a sense of peace like no other. So, as you can imagine, I was more than excited to share this experience with my own kiddo.
So last week, along with four other families, Ori and I took our first camping trip to Samuel P. Taylor State Park, a sweet little redwood shaded campground with a creek running through, and only about an hour drive North from San Francisco. We loaded up the Prius with a tent, sleeping bags and thermarest mats, cooking gear and enough food to last way longer than the two nights we were planning to be there, swim suits, extra clothes, a bike and a scooter, a net, bucket, shovel and a magnifying glass to check out all the interesting little critters, and we were off. In the next three days Ori spent every waking moment in pure bliss running around with all his buddies, climbing tree stumps, playing hide and seek in the redwood forest, splashing in the creek, catching fry (baby fishies), riding bikes, and roasting marshmallows on a stick. He was on top of the world to say the least. In fact he had such an amazing time he begged and pleaded and cried when we had to leave:~( And all I could say is, "I know little man, I'm sad to leave too, but we will do it again soon."
Here's the photo recap of our trip:
Reaching new heights!
Ridin' n scootin'.