Friday, July 7, 2017

Our first Gramping trip ever, It's my new word...

We've never done it before, Lynn and I, it's a new experience for us. Our oldest daughter Jen is living with us temporarily while her family buys a house here in Meridian Idaho and we get to experience little three and a half year old twin girls up close and personal, we love it!
Jen grew up camping with us from day one so didn't have any reservations about letting her babies go with us on a 4 day Gramping trip. Gramping in the Whazoopedia means "Grand Parents camping with grand kiddies." It may be a word already in use but in my mind it's a brand new word lol.
BTW, when they were oh so small and couldn't say GrandPa, they called me BaBa. So now I'm BaBa, formerly the Not-So-Grand Whazoo. There it is.

Starting from home, someone was dogging us to hit the road.

While the girls were "kidding" us about going Gramping.

We drove about three hours to a new favorite place Lynn and I found last year along a stream.

We had a picnic then set up camp, it was a fabulous day. The girls did what girls do best...talked. Wait, what?

You have to hand it to her,  Zoe had a butterfly land in her palm right after lunch. The Spirits of this place were looking good for our trip.

Ok Ok, the butterfly was half dead but the photo op was there and I took it. Besides, could you tell a little girl she was holding a dying butterfly?

There was an after-lunch walk, places to see and things to go. Yes I did, thank you.

Duke had to think about a walk...

Butt he went diving instead.

Do dogs hate it when other dogs shower them? Bailey's face says yes.

We were camped just off of a dirt road that had a bridge over the river. Under the bridge are hundreds of birds nest, homes to, well, hundreds of birds. I had to swallow as I wondered what kind of birds they might be.

We had walked to the downstream side of the bridge, and what a gorgeous view it was. Duke was streaming his favorite show, The River of No Return. And it was.

Lil Bailey loved it too. Well she seemed to anyway.

There was another camp spot over there but we had passed on it because of high water in the road and it didn't seem to have much to offer. We walked over to see it anyway.

This was the road to that other camp.

The place was an immediate hit. The water was just the perfect depth of one inch to over a foot deep with a gravely bottom instead of mud, and no big rocks. It was after all, part of the road.

The girls did water aerobics.

Parker ran away.

Zoe came back. Duke said "Ya'll are crazy."

Parker came back. Zoe ran away.

Duke said, well we know what Duke said.

So after just setting up camp across the road, yep, we moved. It had to be done, it was a the perfect place to camp.

A break was taken. Swim suits were put on.

What a trip it was, playing in the water with snow covered peaks behind us.

Zoe practiced her jogging.

She said she liked it here. Or was she doing disco?

She challenged us to a water fight.

Parker said OK.

Duke still says, "Ya'll are crazy."

The girls played hide and seek.

They couldn't find each other.

Parker went looking for Zoe. She found a mosquito instead.

Then they laughed about being so silly.

Zoe scratched her head and wondered, well, she wondered. How do I know what a three and a half year old wonders?

Parker was so happy to be there.

She gave hugs...

And thumbs up. I called them Strawberry and Blueberry. Ends up that Parker was a watermelon. What did I know?

A bald eagle flew over. Another sign that this was a magical place.

We brought our friend Wilson with us.

Parker and Zoe played keep away.

Parker won so we celebrated.

Dinner was an outside thumbs up affair.

We had a fire. (I did not think you could tell)

The girls sat by themselves.

Bedtime. It was 10pm and still light out.

Two girls, Grand Ma and some toys. All slept late. I think the toys snore a little.

Breakfast was a fun experience in the usually quiet camper of the geriatric crowd.

This would be our second day but first full day at that fabulous camp spot.

Zoe brought her friends out...

To watch her eat an apple.

 Zoe went inside, Parker came out.

 Zoe came back out and discovered the fun of making shadows.

I had some fun too. Though with all the coming and going of twins, my head was swimming as well.

Parker tried her hand at throwing rocks for Duke. There is a rock in the picture if you look close, it didn't go far.

But they're just learning to throw, the next was better. And it was a left handed, my hopes are high. Me, brother and sister are all lefties, a tradition that needs to be carried on.

Parker was happy she made a good throw.

Duke and Bailey lost their rocks.

Next up was my homemade swing, what a blast for little girls that love to fly.

This is Jennifer, the girls Mother. That swing including original rope is thirty years old.

I made it to handle two. It twists and turns separately from top and bottom. Jen is on the bottom while sister Jess swings on high.

We went back to that bridge, it was something fun to do. Every now and then the entire flock would roust from their roost and take off. The sound of them flying out from under that bridge was like a giant "whoosh". And that's as close as I can come to describing it, incredible as it was to hear.

The air force was in action. We watched out for bombs.


In every little girl there must surely be a bit of little boy, wanting to throw rocks off a bridge.

I was hoping for a lefty from one of them.

Put on those water shoes GrandMa, you got some esplayin to do. (Ever watched Lucy?)

It was Zoe's turn to be Wilson.

She made it look easy.

Catching the ball will be an issue for a little longer. Something about opening your eyes when the ball comes your way. Duke was trying to coach her, being an expert on catching balls and all.

Well, even if your eyes are open, sometimes coordination isn't there. Just ask me...

And sometimes we don't get around to putting on swimming suits...

Who needs them anyway? I'd put it to you, it's much more fun in clothes.

Duke was talking to water bugs. Or were they talking to him?

Parker almost caught the ball one time. She had a point there.

Wilson was ignoring Duke.

The girls were tired, nap time.

After nap, it seems there had been a wrestling match with a pillow.

We thought it was time to play Candy Land.
"I don't get it" said Parker. Candyland is complicated to a three year old.

She caught on fast though and was winning for a while.

Until mean ol BaBa cheating with the slide.

Someone was upset with BaBa. Look out boys, that look will drop you someday. It made me apologize for cheating, I tell ya what.

They gave the double decker a try but it was a bit intimidating and fully expected to happen. Still they trusted me enough to try.

Why, why is it that old guys have to wear these blasted shorts? I feel like Buster Brown wearing his knickerbockers and hate them. I surely miss my old short shorts from the 70's. Ok maybe not that short, but just not bloomer length.

Hah, I''let you figure this one out.

What with potty training going on and all, we thought to bring the "trainer." It sure beat running up camper steps all the time. In fact I'll mention that it may have saved a life, mine, a time or two. Wait, I don't mean to say I used it. Well...

Zoe and I had a talk about how someday, boys will be like skeeters, and how she'll have to get used to swatting them away.

Bailey horns in on dinner.

Breakfast. Where does the time go? Zoe was a bit rabid that morning, hormones.

After breakfast we moved on.

Water was literally running across the road in places as the big snow of winter was late leaving the mountains this year. And yes, darn rock hit the windshield leaving town two days ago.

Lynn and I camped here last year also. We talked about how all the dead and dying trees will be an issue in the years ahead. Evidenced by this fallen tree that was about where we parked last year.

Funny how it works. I no longer see the value in a picture of a truck and camper without Grand Kids in it.

There we go, what a difference.

Many flowers were picked...

with dandelions being the favorite. In fact they blew the other flowers away.

Well, some did and some didn't.

Will we still have wonderful talks when they grow up?

In the meantime something was going on in my back pocket...

I'll call it butt doodle. Better an "le" than a "ie.."

Like everyone, I've butt dialed before, yet never did the butt doodle. Am I the first? Do I win something? Will it fund my retirement? Last butt not least, could Pablo Picasso's butt doodle any better?

Yet more dandelions.

Darn flowers. They look dainty but won't pull up for a little girl.

Grandma has the strength, ask me how I know.

Big dog, no bark. Like a big hat, no horse.

A picnic was had, we were in no hurry to go home.

We were feeling bouquet that afternoon. (was that bad? I thought it was bad.)

We love our Idaho plates. Ah but details are in the fine print. Put on your good glasses Grandma.

As always, another dirt road yanked us off course...

and led us to a fabulous camp spot. I've heard it said, (Howdy Ranger Tim), you can't swing a dead fish and not hit a great camp spot in Idaho.

To Bailey it was Splendor In The Grass, not starring Bailey Wood.
(Well, you had to be there.)

Swim suits, sun screen, bug spray,

Add water, fun happens.

We were so excited with another perfect spot that we decided to stay another night. Mother Jen had been told ahead of time this was a strong possibility and not to worry. It seems to be that way here in Idaho, we always take another day.

Between two pools there was a sandbar with long grasses moving with the water. Zoe was fascinated.

I was hoping she wouldn't sit down or she'd have aqua grassiass.  Did I just say "water, thank you" or "wet butt?" 

Meanwhile back at the ranch we were starting to chill.

This Grandma knows how to chill. I guess it comes naturally to Grandmas.

And it surely should.

Meantime, girls have started playing with GrandMa's accessories. Wow it made them look so much older. Kinda spooky, like they'll be telling me what to do next. Wait, what?

What a cute librarian she'll make hah. Not in to head banging parties and all, I'm sure her Dad and I agree.

Tonight it seems we will be woking the dog. (Have I used that one before?)

The twins are prepping him for the wok.

Grandma, Would you like to have a ball?!

It was something watching her figure out how to climb those steps and get the ball up there too.

And I have to say watching this video of them coming down the steps at three and a half years old, I'll be coming down the same way in the near future, sadly.

In this setting I see another tree that will be on the ground in the next year or so, sadly.

Morning on the banks of the River Whaz. I really don't know what this stream or river is, and there's the beauty.

Well, and a few other beauties.

Morning with the best coffee I ever had. Haha, you think I really mean that? If I knew how to smile without making the sound of something breaking you'd know how I felt about that moment with that child. I was smiling hugely inside, insanely huge, Grandpa huge.

Lucky man that I am, I've had that feeling before with their Mother. The same only different, right? Please notice that I did preface that with "lucky" man, in so many ways.

A sneak-in picture of that little girl when she got married.

I guess we love them so much because we loved our kids so much. And we know we'll not enjoy the next generation like we do these due to so many reasons.

Taken from the top of the camper, can you tell? I call it topography tho I don't know why.

Oh no, dandelions have been spotted. Spotted by polka dots.

Those bloody bastards would not blow for those little girls!

Driving out we passed another field of...dandelions, of course.

Finally, after conceding defeat to the dandelions that would not blow...

We headed home with precious cargo wore out from camping.

Thanks for reading....that was the whole Grandpa-chilada. Surely you know what I mean.

Like I said in the beginning, it was a magical 1st Gramping Trip.

Scenes from a playground