We finally made good on our promise to take Maggie camping and drove up to the Sequoia National Forest for 1 night a couple of weeks ago. We had a really good time and the kids enjoyed the whole camping experience. Even though we weren't in the National Park we still found one grove of 'Big Trees' called 'The Trail of 100 Giants' and we all were amazed at the size of them!
Going on a bear hunt
We felt industrious using this log as a bench seat for the twins since we couldn't fit additional chairs into my car
Delaney was less than thrilled to wear this outfit. I put this flannel on her and she cried "Not pretty!" Kody and I thought she looked cute though, and she forgot about it when she found this stick.
Prior to setting up camp I gave what Kody thought was a ridiculous speech about the dangers of the forest that focused primarily on snakes. Maggie listened intently as I told her that some snakes are dangerous and she should never try to play with them, but come and tell us if she sees one. So, once we started setting up camp I heard two "Snake!" screams come from her and both times ran over to find a worm inching it's way over a piece of firewood or something. The third time she came over and said, "Mommy, there is a BIG snake over there," pointing just 200 feet from our camp I was hesitant to believe her and even joked that it was probably another worm. I don't know what possessed me to actually walk over to the pile of pine needles she was pointing to, but I did and to my shock and HORROR there all coiled up was a huge rattle snake! I grabbed all the kids back by the scruff of their necks and yelled for Kody. Upon inspection (ie: Kody throwing a couple of rocks at it, then poking it with a long stick) we discovered that it was dead (thank heavens). Still, the paranoid mother in me refused to just leave it there and since we didn't have a shovel with us I insisted that we dispose of it the only way we were able (no, not eating it like Bear Grylls)--I made Kody build a separate fire pit and we burned it. He was a little less than thrilled to do that, but I told him it would be a learning experience for the kids and it definitely wasn't safe to have even a dead rattlesnake around the camp.
Maggie the snake charmer. I praised Maggie up and down for doing exactly what I had instructed her to do and she looked at me with this precocious expression and said, "I know mom, I saw that snake and thought 'Oh grief, I gotta get these kids out of here.'"
Kody and I just about died laughing when she said that.
So long, Summer, see ya next year.