Last week I was applauding myself for 10 years of blogging then I abruptly and unintentionally took 10 days off. 

I wish I could say I was taking a blog-funded trip to the beaches of Bora Bora but alas, the monetary gains from this blog are very low. Instead, we were on a budget camping trip.

I’ve been trying to go camping since we got married. The closest we got was our brief babymoon at the Loretta Lynn cabins in late 2013. Other than the fact that I spent most of the time popping zofran, it was a great trip. I was determined this would be THE YEAR we finally took our family camping trip. I made reservations two weeks ago on Airbnb for the cutest little cabin. Fifteen minutes after I reserved the cabin, I got an email saying there had been an issue with scheduling and the cabin was already booked, but please come visit us again later! I thought my camping dreams would once again be put on hold for several months but at the last minute, I found the last available cabin in the entire state of Georgia that was less than $225 per night. I made a list of the 35 camping items I’d need to pack (not counting clothes and food) and wrote a schedule for the next day. I’ve spent many a night in a tent, but we knew a cabin would be easier for Annabelle to sleep in and overall give a less stressful trip. I could not wait to take AB in a kayak or play with her on the banks of the lake. We would read bedtime stories by the fire. I was so excited. 

Annabelle had to a pottery painting class that morning and told me on the way there that she didn’t feel well. Naturally, she would require a visit to the doctor on the day we were going camping. I called the doctor to beg for a prescription but they said I would need to be seen, but they didn’t have any openings for the rest of the day. I didn’t want to visit urgent care, but I also didn’t want her to suffer from a UTI for four days. We did the pottery class, stocked up on supplies at Walmart, ate lunch, packed and drove ourselves to the nearest urgent care. I bought myself an iced coffee on the way for liquid courage. We prayed we’d be in and out quickly and the Lord who hears our cries and pleas got us out in under 30 minutes.

Thanks to our unforeseen visit to see the doctor, we got on the road late and rolled into the campground around 7:30. I knew the cabin would have air conditioning and a bathroom which I considered fake camping, but I wasn’t expecting it to look like a hotel room straight out of the 70’s. It had wood paneling, faded floral comforters, and a generic hotel painting. It was not adorable the cabin in the woods I had dreamed of for so long. We couldn’t even find a fire pit! What’s a camping trip with no fire to sit around while toasting marshmallows?! I was so disappointed I almost cried. 

The next morning we explored the campground. On the website, they advertised boat rentals with a picture of a woman in a kayak. They had no kayaks or canoes for rent. I asked where we could play in the water since swimming was also advertised, and three separate park rangers said they would never swim in that water. It turns out that the campground is more of an overnight stop for boaters and hikers than an actual campground. All the toys I had brought for Annabelle were for water or outdoor play, neither of which she could do much of. There was a playground and we walked around a little, but it was 103* with high humidity. There are no words Daniel Webster could pull out of his dictionary to accurately describe the heat. It was outrageous. I knew camping in May would be hot, but I thought it would be manageable. The thermometer can read the same in Massachusetts and Georiga, but here it feels like someone is putting a wet pillowcase over your head. It’s the worst. The gnats were out in full force. I HATE GNATS. I hate them so much, I’ve been praying since last summer that God would keep the gnats away this summer. So far my prayers have been working well (you’re welcome, people of Georgia) but they were all over the campground. 

We did make some fun memories. We went on a boat ride, made a 550 piece puzzle, went on a short hike, and looked for alligators. I got some reading done. On Sunday we drove about an hour to the nearest town to go wading in the little creek. I only slipped and fell in once. I would have stayed upright if I wasn’t watching a very pregnant woman crawl over slippery rocks in an effort to get the most Pinterest worthy photos she could. 

 “Here you go, Mama. You can take these and decorate the cabin like you like.”

We found the firepit (a circle in the middle of the grass) and Sesame got to roast her own marshmallows.
I’d make s’more jokes but it’s too hot.