We spent New Year's Day traveling to Calavera Big Trees State Park in Arnold, CA. Cute, little town.
We were meeting my cousin Chad's family there for some snow camping.
They were running late, so the kids got started with the snow ball fighting (and crying), snowman building, and stepping into a freezing river (Auggie).
Still no sign of them. And no cell service. After dark, we drove into town to find service and learned they had entered the wrong address and gotten lost. Huge bummer. But I need to mention that they are one positive family and everyone got to work (in the dark, in the snow) setting up camp as soon as they got there.
Sally, Auggie, and I slept in the back of the van. I borrowed Chad's zero degree sleeping bag and was seriously warm. I was amazed. Didn't sleep much, but was warm. Sally and Auggie slept great. So did the boys in the tent.
We loved Chad's breakfast burritos for breakfast in the morning.
I have to mention the miserable time Sally had. She is so very picky about her clothing. Big, bulky snow gear didn't fit her bill. She wore snow boots a little the first day before switching to sandals (!) and then was beyond unhappy when she got numb, stinging feet. The next morning she stayed in the van probably 3 hours before she finally decided getting bundled up was a good idea. Life got better after that.
Camp got packed up and it was sledding time.
Oh wait, another kink in the road. Nap-needing Auggie decided he was DONE on our walk to find the perfect hill. I carried his dead weight around for a little, then Cherisse and Chad were nice to help out. Cherisse and Chad, who work tirelessly to help their daughter Lucy, with SMA, were helping ME out. Seriously angels.
Poor Lucy was pretty miserable in the cold.
Snow may be the one thing she doesn't like.
Owen and Dallin were off on their own most of the morning sledding down a huge hill they found. They're fun together.
Drew and Jocey are nonstop. On the way back to the car, they tried out most every hill we passed. And ran into their fair share of trees.
In conclusion, I am glad we went. It was a memory and an adventure. But I will never go snow camping with young kids again.
Note to my future self: In case you do ever attempt this again, proper fitting snow gear is ESSENTIAL. Trying to save money by borrowing stuff is great. But not if you're constantly putting on toddler gloves and boots which are too big, getting blisters from boots a little too small, or dealing with coats that are "too puffy."
The end and Happy New Year.
New Year's Eve was spent getting ready for the campout. Our awesome neighbors provided the little NYE celebrating we did with some poppers. Justin and I were the only ones that lasted till midnight. Drew was close, but at 11:39 called it a night.