Most people would consider camping with 8 kids to be a wild life all its own, and it was, wildly fun!! When we got up to Payson Lakes for our Grandma and Grandpa date for July, we warned the kids about the importance of not having food in their tents because of the 'neighborhood' bears.
Zach, Kim, Shantell (our borrowed granddaughter) Ian, Scott and Kai, with Eva and Alex in front.
Kai at eight, who is Brittany's oldest, on the far right, took us very seriously, asking if toothpaste was OK the tents, and even insect repellent. We agreed the repellent was OK.
Alex here, and his brother Kai came equipt with cameras and a promise that their Bachaun (Grandma in Japanese-ish) would go on line and make a book about their camping experience. Hey Edie, I want one too!!
Of course Grandpa did most of the work, setting up the tents and then building the fire!!
Here's a rare picture of Ian with a smile, of course flashing pics at kids in the dark does have the effect of squinty eyed pics, but look what fun dimples he has!! (Ian is 10, my daughter Ashley's middle child)
And it's finally time to roast hot dogs for dinner. Kai on the right is cooking one for grandma and grandpa too!!
Scott (age 8 and Trevor's oldest) is seen here mugging with Ian.
And sometimes your marshmallows catch on fire. Kim later said the s'mores were her favorite part of the whole trip.
Finally we are all settled down, with promises that bears won't bother us if we don't have food in our tents.
And it's breakfast time. It had rained in the night, and our rain flies were sopping, but it was mostly dry in the morning for breakfast. It's a good thing that Shantell thought to bring her umbrella.
And Mister Rock Chuck finished off a pan cake for us.
Next we were off for a hike to the lake ... Later in the week we heard that Payson Lakes had evacuated campers from the camp ground because of two black bears who had had encounters with campers .... whoa.
Fortunately for us, the only wild life we saw, besides the rock chucks, squirrels and chipmunks, was this little duck family at the lake.
Of course Eva's little four year old legs gave out heading back to the van to do another hike up to the Grotto. Luckily Kim and Shantell could take turns carrying Chubs (Zach), and Grandpa could be Eva's Lacky, as seen here on our way up to the Grotto.
Some of the grands are more graceful hikers than others. Here we see Alex (4, Brittany's youngest) doing a bit of a dance step!
They have really upgraded this trail to be kid friendly. When I was last up this trail we stepped across the stream on rocks, or wiggly logs. Now they have these planed logs that are nailed in place.
Ah yes, the Grotto. Its like hiking in Hawaii. The kids loved splashing in the water. Earlier Eva had asked if we could swim in the 'little pool under the waterfall' I had told them about. I told them it was very cold, and we didn't have swim suits. She had said "Lets get naked and swim in that pool, Grandma!"
Of course we declined to go along with her suggestion and here is most of the crew fully dressed. Well other than shoes.
All in all we had a grand time. The kids had fun with siblings and cousins, and it was our first time to take Zach on an outing. He did great, of course having his 'staff' along which helped a lot.