Preparing is Part of the Fun

This spring break we are taking our 10-year-old grandson on his first ever camping, road trip. On a recent trip to Los Angeles, where Jaden lives, we spent a Sunday afternoon shopping at REI to get the kind of gear an LA boy does not normally need—headlamp, hiking boots, long underwear, rain gear. It was a family outing: Dad took care of the four-year-old, ended up sitting on the camp chair demos having a pretend picnic with the camp-kitchen wares. Mom took care of finding the bargains. Grandma found the boots.

Back home, the headlamp was by far the biggest hit: high-beam, low-beam, flashing red to torment his sister. Clothes are not so interesting yet, but they will be to his grandmothers when night-time temperatures in southern Utah drop into the 40s(F.) and our young lad gets cold.

 

Jaden with his stash of new camping gear

Jaden with his stash of new camping gear

We have been getting ready for the trip for months—making online reservations for campgrounds, thinking about evening games to play by lantern, getting books on tape for the driving times. It has been a lot of fun to think and plan for this big adventure. Last Sunday we practiced packing both the car and the roof box.

Loading the roof box

Loading the roof box

Soon we three and our little corgi dog will be on the road, living in the expansiveness and changeability of nature—a sure recipe for growth and bonding. Jaden will be learning about building fires, watching the stars, and cooking his own food. He will be leading us up trails in search of ancient ruins and slot canyons. There will be no computers or video games. There will only be the vastness of nature and the four of us.

Jaden ready to go

Jaden ready to go

Gracie in the car

Gracie in the car

3 replies
  1. Jeanne Petrick
    Jeanne Petrick says:

    Lucky Jaden!
    What I would not have given to have even just one of my grandmothers gift me in this way. And he can’t have better teachers of the adventure and awe of nature and the great outdoors. He will carry this experience in his heart and soul for the rest of his life. It is a priceless gift that you are giving him – and someday he will fully understand its magnitude. You too have taught me so much about the wilderness and the water for which my life has benefitted immensely. (Thank you) I don’t have to tell you to have fun ;-))! Enjoy his wonder. Lucky Jaden. (and what a beautiful child!)

    Reply
  2. Jude Rathburn
    Jude Rathburn says:

    What an awesome way to take advantage of spring break and give all of you a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. I am sure there will be many lessons learned by each of you. Looking forward to hearing your stories. Have a wonder-filled journey, you four. Take good care of each other.

    Jude

    Reply

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