So, the trip was basically awesome in every way. It was a week with freedom from work, stress, time lines, to-do lists, chores, and most especially...cleanliness.
Yes, friends, freedom from cleanliness was one of the best parts of our trip. When camping, we do strive for a basic level of hygiene. But other than the don't-get-e.coli-during-dinner kind of cleaning, there's not much to be done about the dirt. And the kids LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF IT.
About 5 minutes into the Park, so about 4 minutes and 49 seconds into Ben and Molly scooping dirt and rocks into magnificent piles, I said, "Don't get too dirty guys". And that was the end of my efforts at cleanliness. They had the most marvelous time kicking up dust clouds ("It looks like a steam cloud chuffing out of an engine Mom!" says Ben with delight), making rock piles, letting the sticky marshmallow from smores create a protective sheen on their faces that not even U.V. rays can penetrate, and just generally living like wild children. It brought joy to them, and delight to us to see them so happy exploring such simple parts of nature. Frankly, just thinking about it makes me want to throw them in the back alley to play and relive the fun:)
Here is Ben making some more "puffs of steam."
Molly showing off her special rock pile. She started this as soon as we got to our campsite and finished it by the end of the week. Ben and the Jester kids helped a bit too.
Nothing like playing in the dirt!
Seriously, it was even fun for the big kid in the group! Dirt just rocks!