So, as I mentioned in Part 1, my biggest fear of the week was that sleep would be poor. For those who don't know, I have a checkered past with sleep and my kids, and I am prone to useless anxiety about getting enough rest. I spent WAY too much time leading up to the trip worrying that at least one of the kids would be up many times each night...needing a bathroom, hearing strange sounds, needing water, needing snuggles...whatever. I was geared up for terrible sleep.
But, the most magical thing happened...cool moutain air, comfy air mattresses, long days hiking and playing in the moutains, and sleeping within arm's reach of Mommy and Daddy all came together to produce some of the most wonderful sleep of my life!! The first night was a bit touchy, but other than that, it was AWESOME!!
I'll admit that when we camp, Aaron and I like to be comfy. Not "we 'camped' at the Hilton" comfy, but nice-sized air mattresses with lots of blankets, pillows and warm jammies comfy. And it was SO worth the car-top carrier we had to buy to have those air mattresses. Such great sleep!
And I also have to admit that our brand new, very warm tent helped too.
We hadn't planned on getting a tent. We were going to borrow my parent's tent to save a few bucks. It is a monster 12-man tent that requires 4 people, 6 sled dogs, 1 backhoe, and a turtle to set up, but they were willing to lend it and we (I) thought it would be nice to have some (lots of) extra room for the week. So we packed it, and its massive bag of poles, and its massive tarp and drove them all out to the Park. It was even the (4 gigantic piece) item that put our packing over the top and required the last-minute purchase of a car top carrier.
But, alas, my brother was the only person who knew how to set it up. We scheduled a meet time a week before the trip for him to show us how to get it set up, but he wasn't able to come at the last minute. And as we tried to figure it out ourselves, we realized that he has long since removed the instructions. But Aaron and I figured, "We both have Master's degrees, the internet, and good experience with tents. We'll print new instructions from the web, and just figure it out when we get there." Uhhh...BIG mistake.
We get out there, with a huge storm rolling in over the mountains, and despite our very best effort, combined with the best effort of our friends with us, we were NOT able to get the thing even close to usable. So Aaron dashed off to downtown Estes Park, found a camping store and bought a nice, 6-man Kelty tent. He raced back up to us, we furiously set it up, and hopped inside and zipped up the rain fly just in time to avoid the hail storm that rolled in:)
Really though, it worked out well because we LOVE our new tent, and are now inspired to camp much more often. If only the mountains were closer!
Sweet Moose Mouse catching some zzzzzz's:
Sleepy Mister B, warm and cozy in the footed jammies that his Aunt RiRi and Uncle Curt gave him this year for Christmas. They keep him WARM...ideal for camping at a high altitude.