Tag Archives: kids

Wet camping trip? Try dutch ovens and lemon squares!

Camping is becoming a ritual for our family (now that we can put the kid to work!), and this year we battled Mother Nature to prove it.

Everyone always kids in a totally serious way that summer doesn’t start around here until July 5th, but at my brilliant suggestion we bit the bullet and went camping anyway.

Just to give you an idea of the weather we faced, here’s a headline I read when we got back: “Summer squall downs trees, knocks out power around region.”

And this: Seattle’s total rainfall for June so far is 2.78 inches through 5 p.m. Saturday – which makes it the eighth wettest June on record with still a week to go.

So, we left in a downpour and hoped the worst had passed through. Foolish, yes. Because where we headed ended up with .63″ of rain Friday, .3″ Saturday, and then voila! on Sunday, the SUN came out for us to pack and get the hell outta there before we all grew mold in our private areas.

Our friends fed us martinis and abandoned us left early, halfway through the weekend, which just goes to show it’s all relative because in Juneau, Alaska, yours truly was the prissy camping princess.

It helps that the Hubs is true Alaskan and can tie up tarps at 100 yards. We also ate well and constantly. Here’s his set-up. He’s #1 on the local hunters’ most-wanted camp cooks list…
That was our entertainment, sitting under tarps and watching the Hubs make stew, roasted chicken and braised short ribs.
In case you think I did nothing but growl…
(Ok, probably a fair amount of growling was heard while I sat by our additional, illegal campfire because I was scared if I went in the tent I’d never come out!)
I’ll have you know that I pre-measured ingredients to try to make lemon squares, baked in a Dutch oven. We had nothing else to do, so we were zesting, juicing, stirring, patting, and baking. Granted, I forgot the powdered sugar, but it tasted pretty decent in all our sogginess. Yes, life gave us lemons and we made lemon squares!We couldn’t keep covered enough out there. But, the surprise Jiffy Pop was a huge hit and went pretty well with wine in a box.Like I said, the sun did come out Sunday, thank goodness, so we kept our sanity packed easily and hung stuff out to dry at home.

Ok, Mother Nature, now that you waterboarded us from the sky we’ve paid our dues, all the rest of the summer camping weather will be splendid, right?!

A camping princess can dream, can’t she?

Do you have any tips for camping in wetness?? Would your family stay or pack back up?

already, she’s learning lessons the hard way

Sometimes, your children have good, helpful advice. Or, accurate information, at least, that they have determined on their own, through exploration, experimentation or maybe, just plain dares.

While driving today, I was sternly advised from the backseat (the Kid) to “never, ever put your finger in your ear and then in your mouth.”

“‘Cuz it tastes nasty!!”

I guess, some lessons she will have to learn on her own. Might as well start early.

[And, no, you could not pay me enough to find out the full extent of this body “taste-testing.”]

1 fish, whose fish?

Our little island’s local pool hosted a holiday fundraiser carnival last night. I was hoping it was to raise money for the half-built steamroom currently filled with boxes, but I’m afraid it might have been for kickboards or other items actual swimmers use. Instead of something a stressed out parent could run to on a cold winter night.

When is there a fundraiser for the fat, lazy parents?!

Anyways, Santa came on a sleigh/canoe with swimming reindeers, all very cute. They offered games for kids, like rubber duckie races in the lazy river and bobbing for apples in the toddler pee-pee pool. Post-carnival mouthwash, not included.

But what most surprised me, as a first-timer to this event, was the fishing game, which had real fish in a separate pond (not the pool!) for kids to net. Then they handed them to the kids in baggies to take home. Try telling your kid “no fish” after she sees 42 kids in wet swimsuits running around with bags of jiggling, stressed out fish.

Thanks, pool people. Thank you SO much.
I think I can speak on behalf of most of the parents in attendance by saying: Bite Rocks.

Lest you think they were being irresponsible, the pet shop donating the fish DID include a short note of how to care for the fish you never wanted in the first place. Which described the warmth of the room (70 degrees! not so free a fish after that heating bill!) and the water, what type of fish food to use instead of crushed Wheat Thins, I guess, how many gallons the fish needs to feel happy, not including the fish therapy necessary after being terrorized at the pool carnival, all of which happens to be for sale at ………ta da, their shop!
Nice donation, eh?

So, after I put Kid to bed, I turn to my local, late night vet for advice: Dr. Googlefish. I read up on how to put a new fish in a tank. Since we have no tank, I put the fish (gradually) into a glass mixing bowl and turned out the light.

Little did I know it would be the last time I saw him alive.

What the instructional note and Dr. Googlefish failed to say was fish jump. Judging from where I found him, pretty far, too.

At least, that is what I assumed this morning when I discovered the empty bowl.

And a stiff, dead fish on the kitchen floor.

Unless the Dog sniffed out the fish and flicked it out of the bowl.

But she said she was innocent. Besides, she said, dat fish was way too small and unstinky to roll in…

Today, I can only assume there are a lot of small, dead fish on our little island. And islanders are likely having individual, yet mass, funerals everywhere. If you listen carefully you may hear the final sounds of the ceremonies: