We spent this weekend keeping tradition alive, taking part in our fourth annual c-group camping trip.  We all piled into our cars on Friday afternoon, and by sundown we had set up our own little tent city in Larrabee State Park as sixteen of us gathered around the campfire to kick off a weekend of eating, lounging, laughing, and outdoors-ing.  Shane threw a whole slew of bratwursts on the grill for dinner, and thus, the feeding frenzy began (good thing I’d spent the previous three days eating light…).

The rest of the night was full of s’mores, beer, and campfire chat.  Is there any better way to spend a summer evening in the Pacific Northwest?

The fire did double duty all weekend, as both heat source and food cooker.  We roasted, toasted, grilled, and flame-broiled, at morning and at night.  Flame-toasted bagels for breakfast?  Mmmm-hmmm…

After breakfast, we headed over to the little stretch of beach near the campground for playtime.  The agenda:  frisbee-tossing, wiffle ball, rock-skipping, lounging.

Shane was thrilled to discover that his best little buddy, the G-man, is a fellow rock-skipper.

We headed back to the campsite for lunch, and then staked out a spot in a nearby field where the boys (and the athletically-inclined women) could play a game of football, while the less-inclined women could stretch out on the sidelines in the sun.  I’ll give you one guess as to which group I was in…

All that playing put us in the mood for Happy Hour and so we headed down the road for a round of super-fresh oysters at Taylor Shellfish. Sprinkled with lemon juice and paired with a glass (er…red plastic cup) of white wine, these were perfect.  One slurp and I was rethinking my long-held oyster-aversion.  Maybe it was the scenery, maybe it was the smell of salt-water wafting through the air, or maybe it was the company of such good friends, but wowsers, those were some tasty little suckers.

The rest of the evening was passed back at the campsite.  Shane spent some quality time with his other little buddy, Zebo, Jack grilled a chicken and veggie-kebob dinner that rivaled the meals we’re able to prepare at home in our fully-equipped kitchen, and we toasted marshmallows and told stories until I couldn’t keep my eyes open any longer (all of that chillin’ had me tuckered out).

It seemed we were all a little reluctant to leave this morning – it was hard to coax Brian, Shane, and Nicole (that’s her feet) out of their tree-anchored cocoons (I’m adding a hammock to the REI wishlist).

We sat around the campfire talking until check-out rules required us to begrudgingly break down camp and let the fire die (but not until we’d ended  s’mores smack-down: round 3, in which Jack completely changed the game with a bacon-chocolate-marshmallow creation).

I’m washing the smoke smell out of my clothes with a sigh tonight, knowing it will be a year before we’re able to embark on another weekend like this one.  There’s some solace in knowing that I’ll shortly be drifting off to sleep in our soft, cozy bed, but there’s also quite a bit of sadness in knowing that toasted marshmallows aren’t on the menu for breakfast tomorrow…


  1. Michelle says:

    SUCH a great camping trip!!! Thanks to you and Shane for one of the best weekends of the year!

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