Monday, August 11, 2014


This past weekend was our annual family camping trip to Lake Shelbyville. We considered skipping it because Liv is just such a handful, but decided that we'd go for Ben's sake. He was very excited!

We drove down Friday morning. We timed it for Liv's nap, but the stinker only slept 30 minutes. It was a 3.5 hour drive, so that was a long trip. We stopped in a McDonald's with a playland, and that helped. Liv crawled so far up a slide that Mike had to climb in after her and get her. She didn't want to come down. Stinker!

Once we arrived, Mike set up camp while I kept the kids entertained. Liv was impressed with the kiddie chairs.

She kept swinging her legs up and down. Big fun.

She was also a big fan of the Fruit Loops. This girl loves her sweets.

It was humid and misting rain most of the afternoon, but not too bad. The kids kept busy playing and running Mom and Dad ragged.

Ben was intrigued by doing anything "normal" outside. He asked to brush his teeth, because he thought that was fun to do outside.

We had all the campsites reserved at the end of a road, so no cars came and went, except the occasional ranger. Which meant Liv had lots of area to push around her doll stroller and explore.

After Kim and Mike arrived, we made dinner and hung out. Liv called it a night around 7 but Ben stayed up late, until about 10. He went to bed around 9:30 but then decided he wasn't tired and got back up, polished off half a hamburger, hung out, then went back to bed.

Liv was up bright and early at 6 a.m., which meant Mom and Dad were too. Nothing cuter than waking up to a baby standing up in her pack and play, just her head and mop of curls showing, shouting "hi!" and grinning ear to ear.

Mike reminded me that it was our anniversary, so I took a selfie to commemorate the day.

Little Miss picked up every rock she found, and often tried to eat them. She is nuts. She seriously never stops going. Energizer Bunny! She was constantly in the dirt, getting into everything, and causing trouble.

Kennedy is exactly a year older than Liv, and was a little more calm and cute as a button!

At the end of the road, this trio of deer often came by to snack. Ben loved that.

Ben explaining the deer to Kennedy, and Liv explaining who knows what to the Mikes.

Unlike Ben at this age, Liv will go happily to anyone.

And is obsessed with dog leashes. No idea why.

We had breakfast of pancakes, bacon, and eggs. People took turns trying to contain Liv. She was not having it. Such a busy bee. She wanted down, but would immediately make her way to the grill or grab stuff off the table, or sit in the mud. Never a dull moment.

Then it was time to pick up our pontoon boat and hit the water. Sadly, it was overcast and a bit chilly, but what can you do?

We were not on the boat for 2 minutes before Liv had thrown her favorite doll into the water. Before the day ended, she'd tossed over her doll, a shoe (twice), several crackers, and a dirty diaper. Oh, this kid!

After Mike rescued her doll from drowning, Captain Liv took us on a ride.

Be sure to keep a close eye and a tight grip on this crazy lady. She tried to climb over the side and jump in many times.

After a bit of a ride, we found a cove and let the kids play and swim. I went in the water once. That was enough. It was cold thanks to the bad weather.

The kids took turns getting rides on the tube.

Ben and Riley made a mud pit, which turned out to be Ben's favorite part of the day.

We only kept Liv in the water maybe 10 minutes at a time, because it was chilly. The rest of the time she played on the boat and ate snacks. She loved the peanuts but kept trying to eat the shell. In these photos, she was sad because we took the peanut shell away.

I tried another selfie. Liv had different ideas.

Liv even went on the wave runner. She loved it!

Around 4, Liv and the kids got tired, so we headed back to camp. We showered the kids and cleaned them up. Liv took a short nap, and we made dinner.

Kennedy and Kenny kept us entertained with their conversations.

It was also Kim's birthday, so Brenda bought a cake and we all sang. Check out the video at the end of the post.

Then after Liv went to bed (at 6, she was worn out!), Riley and Ben made smores and we all hung out around the camp fire.

Here are a few shots of our setup in the tent. Those cots are a life saver. Poor Mike let Ben have his, and he slept on the floor. That's devotion, Daddy.

By the end of the trip, we were totally exhausted and ready to head home. Camping with a 1 yr old and 4 yr old is not for the faint of heart.


  1. That's the first time I've ever seen Livvie not smiling! And that first picture of Brenda looks like she was having a hard time getting into the swing of things. Oh, I remember the days! Rather than rent a pontoon boat, I think I'd rent a good RV with beds.

  2. Your posts literally make me laugh out loud! Mike kept asking me what I was laughing at.. I love how Ben wanting to do something "normal" outside like brush his teeth!

  3. That camping trip always looks like so much fun! I want to play in that mud and ride that tube and go on the pontoon boat! I have got to find a way to go one of these times!!!!