For Novalie’s birthday this year, she wanted to go camping. It was her first time and she loved it.
Well, loved it minus the bugs.
I picked a campground close to us and easy to get to. I also picked it because it has a beach area for swimming on the lake. We went the night before Novalie’s birthday because she wanted to wake up camping and open her presents in the tent. We were happy to fulfill her request.
We borrowed my brother’s tent, packed some hot dogs and s’mores (the most important thing!) and we were off.
Helping get the tent set up.
Helping set up camp.
After we set up our tent and got organized, we did a little exploring of the campground. Novalie really wanted to get going on roasting hot dogs and marshmallows, so Kevin got a fire going for us and we got roasting.
Roasting her hot dogs.
After hot dogs, it was on to the marshmallows.
S’mores are so yummy!
After we were full, we went on the bat walk looking for bats. It was still too light to see any. When it got darker later though, Kevin and Novalie found some bats skimming the trees for bugs. We hung up balloons on the ceiling of the tent. Novalie and I played a game or two of skip-bo. When it was dark, we told stories around the campfire.
Kevin trying to give Novalie a hug and take a picture. She was not cooperating.
Beating me at Skip-bo…..again. I taught her too well.
Then we went to bed. Well, Novalie went to sleep. I got maybe an hour total of sleep the whole night. We had noisy kids next door to us and a train that passed by all, I mean ALL, night long tooting the horns. It was a looooooong night.
As promised, Novalie got to open her presents right when she woke up in the tent.
So excited to open her presents. I love that she literally had been awake for all of 30 seconds.
Happy with all her presents.
After presents, Kevin drove the 5 minutes to Subway and brought back breakfast sandwiches. We really rough it! Ok, so I brought scrambled eggs and a frying pan, but didn’t think through how I was going to cook them over an open fire. What can I say, it has been a long time since I last camped. We sat on a blanket in the shade and ate our Subway sandwiches and watched as people left or took their boats out to the lake. We then packed up camp and went to the beach area by the lake. There were a lot of bugs at the lake. A lot. So, we stayed for all of 45 minutes. Novalie made a hot tub in the sand. She hunted for 9 birthday rocks. We had her cake (per her request) and then headed home.
Playing in the sand.
Her hot tub as she called it.
She wanted a Puss in Boots cake ever since the movie came out. I was glad we finally found one at Target.
What it looked like after we made it small enough to take camping.
Back home, we rested for a little while and then we went to see the movie, “Brave.” Loved the red hair.
Then we ended her birthday with a birthday dinner at Chuck-a-Rama. I was skeptical as buffets sometimes tend to be….well…nasty, but it was quite good. We sat by the roll station, so we knew when they were hot out of the oven. Dangerous for me. Novalie had free reign since it was her birthday and had 3 desserts. 🙂
It was a full and fun packed birthday celebration for a well deserved, beautiful 9 year old!