Family Campfire Lunch
I love spending time in the woods. Or the alpine. Or pretty much anywhere that’s surrounded by nature. I find that being outside, especially alone, can be a very trans-formative/introspective experience. However, if you have a wife and kids like me, who don’t yet know that they like the outdoors, you pretty much have to drag them out of the house, away from the screen or the kitchen and force them to be around nature. I’m not even joking, they just don’t feel the pull to the outdoors like I do. Then, after they have had some fresh air and calmed down, and once they’ve gotten over the necessary abduction, they wind up having a really fun time.
This was one of those fun times. Last summer I spent a few nights out on the property camping in the forest under a tarp and small log shelter. Because it was so close to my house I was able to take my time building it and had a lot of gear there including a camping ‘cot’ and my old acoustic guitar. This was mostly a warm up for my first solo trip I did later in the fall where I was a long hike/bushwhack away from the nearest logging road. (read more about that trip in the post below entitled “Real Outdoors”)
It took about a day to set up the camp and the first thing I needed were some logs for a ridgepole and walls. Thankfully there are plenty of trembling aspen, small ones only 12-15 feet high, all over our property that were the perfect size. After building the camp I cut some firewood with a chainsaw which doubled as beautifying the property by removing all the unattractive blow-down that littered the woods (It also prevents forest fires from spreading along the forest floor). I stayed the night there alone, playing guitar, throwing axes and knives, and just having myself a good ol’ time before passing out on my comfy cot for the night.
The next day my wife and kids joined me for a nice cup of coffee and campfire lunch. We had eggs and sausages, taquitos, pizza pops, and s’mores for dessert. I had to comb along the immediate area removing any thorns and spiky sticks since my kids are like 3 feet tall and came out in shorts. We had a great time and my oldest daughter, who is 8 years old, helped out by hand-sawing some firewood. Then she wanted to do some carving but I said “no, not without some thick leather gloves”. All in all the kids had a great time even with some thorns in their legs, they did good.