5 Things I Learned on Our First Camping Trip

The Hubs in Our New Camper

The Hubs in Our New Camper

  • Make a List. No matter how much stuff you take with you, you’re going to need more stuff. The hubs and I have camped before. We felt pretty confident in what we would need. We just bought this new-to-us camper and have been gradually filling it. Put the stuff from our old pop up camper in the new camper. Bought new sheets and made the bed. Got plates. Got cups. Got towels. But we got there and realized we didn’t have a thing to drink. So, we ran to a convenience store and grabbed some sodas. Crisis averted.
  • Space Is Underrated. Don’t know if you caught it or not, but we used to camp in a pop-up camper. That’s little. Really little. Like, on top of each other little. And not in a good way. Our wish list for a new camper included floor space. This camper’s got it in spades and it made our little weekend excursion so much more enjoyable. I love my hubs dearly, but I gotta have my space.
  • Coffee. We stopped on the way to the campground to buy a coffee maker and coffee. We’re trying to save money. I told the hubs I could do without coffee. He disagreed.
  • Electricity is a Plus. We hooked up to shore power (yeah, I’m learning the lingo. At least I sound like I know what I’m doing, right?). Thought all was good. Until the hubs started the water pump to flush the toilet and the lights went dim. We had to run to Wal-Mart at 10:30 to buy a new battery. We gotta get that situation figured out before we go again.
  • Pets Matter. Seriously, our dogs are the reason I wanted a camper. I love to travel. It’s a basic need for me. Life is all about experiences. But when I go someplace and have to leave my puppies at home, it is not enjoyable. I miss my dogs. Sasha is 14 and Gracie is 9. I want to cherish every minute with them. Besides, I like them better than most people.

5 Things I Learned From My Old Dog

Shelby, our yellow Lab, is nearing the end of her life. Late yesterday afternoon, she fell three times during our walk and just wasn’t right. She’s losing weight and showing her age. We know that last trip to the vet is drawing very near, which breaks my heart. As I held her and stroked her yesterday, I reflected on all she has taught me.

Shelby

Shelby

Exercise Daily. Shelby is 13 years old. Quickly coming up on 14. In spite of her advanced age & arthritis, her tail still wags and she perks up when she sees me carrying her purple leash.

Greet Those You Love With Enthusiasm. She sees me every day, yet every time she sees me she wags like crazy. It never ceases to make me feel special in her eyes.

Don’t Judge by Appearances. A cat was dumped on our road during a snow storm a couple of years ago. We got him neutered & got his shots, and he now sorta answers to the name Patches. When Shelby and I go for a walk through the fields, Patches goes, too. Shelby is so gentle with him, and he winds through her legs, rubbing and loving on her. Whodathunk a battleworn tom cat and an elderly Lab would be such good friends?

Be curious. As you can see from the pic above, Shelby is a curious girl. Our walks include frequent side trips to check out a quivering rabbit, a covey of quail or something dead (I’m not sure why stinky dead things are so interesting, but apparently, they are).

Enjoy. Whatever you are doing, enjoy it. Whatever you are eating, enjoy it. Shelby’s face has an expression of total bliss when I rub her ears. She loses herself in the moment and simply enjoys. How often do we rush through life without stopping to simply enjoy the moment?