Saturday, August 25, 2012


We left on another camping road trip just 2 days after Ryder, Scout and I got home from visiting Mom.  We wanted to check out a few other campgrounds and lakes.  We headed down the "Cowboy Trail." Beautiful country. Beautiful drive! After all the camping we've done this summer we've developed quite an efficient routine.  As soon as we pull into a campground, I get Ryder out of his car seat and let him stand up front with me (I know, I know, safety first, but sometimes....) I usually jump out and "guide" Marty into the campsite.  Marty then puts down the jacks and unhooks while I chase Ryder and Scout around.  Once it is safe to get into the trailer, I begin reorganizing all the crap that fell and moved around enroute while Marty and Ryder get Scout some water and set up the lawn chairs.  I am the dish washer and Marty is the cook, well, he cooks supper anyway.  Ryder sleeps awesome in the trailer, always 11 or 12 hours a night. Once he is asleep, we have a fire and try to make ourselves stay up until 10pm. LOL, it's funny how exhausting camping with a 17 month old can be!!
It's been challenging this year, trying to figure out how to "holiday" with a little one.  Sometimes it feels like we spend a lot of time waiting for Ryder to nap or making sure Ryder has something fun to do, besides play in the ashes of the fire pit, fall into rivers, throw rocks into the ashy fire pit or dump the last few drops of beer from the empty cans all over himself.  Don't get me wrong, the "Great Outdoors" is full of entertainment for little ones, but we had to learn to let go of the idea that we'd get to hike (a 17 year old is only happy in the back pack for so long,) or do much biking (scary biking in Bear country by yourself, and most trails are not chariot friendly.) We had to figure out what we could do besides sleep in on rainy days (sleeping in is never gonna happen again is it?) Like I said, we've had to wrap our heads around how to find things we all like to do together that can include a dog.  For the most part, we usually have great days that just fly by!!

 Thursday morning, we woke up to Scout barking!  This is what was walking through our campsite, a cow calf pair or moose!

 Morning walks in PJs!

 Climbing rocks with Scout.

 Hangin' on beaches (no more swim suits, it's now hoodie weather on the beaches.)

 Eating random things on beaches....

 Wearing his first "ugly camping sweater." We all have one, don't we??

 Pineapple at the picnic table!
 Lawn chair snuggles.

 Road side lunches in the mountains!

And then there are the days we struggle. The days I wish Marty understood how important Ryder's sleep schedule is, the days I wish we didn't have to spend sooo many hours in the truck, the days I spend more time worrying about Ryder having enough time out of the car seat and the days I  worry more about making sure that, Scout getting a chance to crap, than I do about enjoying the journey. 

This last trip was exhausting and I'm not sure if it was because it was sooo soon after all of our other road trips, or if we were just plain camped out, but after 3 days, we were done.  We just decided we would all rather be home than be on the road.  We came home a day early and I am sooo glad we did. We have not unpacked the trailer or the truck. We have not done anything since we got home this afternoon, but sit in the sunshine in our own backyard and it was one of the most relaxing, fun days we've had all summer. :)

 Ryder was pumped to be in his own sandbox. It's no beach, but it's what he's got and he loves it!

Sometimes watermelon tastes just as good in the backyard as it does at a picnic table.

 Still lots of Daddy time this afternoon!

The Wrights!

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Ryder and I just spent 5 days at Mom's. Damn, I miss being in the country. I miss the quiet, I miss the dark, I miss the animals and heck, I miss Mom! :)
Ryder, it turns out, might have a little country in him too, despite spending the first year of his life in the city.  He couldn't get enough of the horses, or spending time in the barn.  He'd wake up in the morning saying, "horse, horse" and he wouldn't stop saying it or grabbing our fingers, leading us to the barn, until he went to bed at night! He loved feeding the horses treats. He'd dig into the treat bucket pull out as many treats as he could carry and walk over to the horse with his hand held out. Adorable!!!
Ryder is also into hugging. He is a very affectionate, cuddly kid. His hugs sometimes involve arms, but mostly just him leaning his head in to lean on whomever he is hugging whether it be another kid, an adult or an animal.  He was not afraid to hug the horses. Again, adorable!!

 Kissing Mom's horse, Maverick. 
Mom calls him, Mavy, for short. Ryder thinks his name is "mammy."

 Waitin' for his ride, wearing Gramma's helmet. Yep, it's time to get him his own, one that fits.

 Lookin' for Scout.

 Ridin, Maverick with Gramma.

 Scout wouldn't leave Ryder's side, as you can see. She was right "instep" with Mav.

 Helpin' Gramma catch the horses, they were in the yard, grazing.

 Ridin', Bobby, Nic's horse, bareback. Ryder can say, Bobby, but it sounds an awful lot like how he says, "puppy" so I am not sure if he knows the difference....

 Hugs for Bobby!

 Feedin' more treats.

We did more than just mess around with the horses during our visit.  We went to the pool where, Ryder insisted on doing the waterslides by himself, even the tube one!!  Ryder's saw his first parade, we attended a BBQ where there were plenty of other children for Ryder to hug and we visited friends.  We had a great time at "Gramma's" house, but I think, Ryder would agree with me when I say, the horses were our favorite part!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Road trips are great for testing relationships, man and wife and parents and child.

After 16 days on the road, 5 showers, 2 boat rides, 2 Ferry rides, one flat tire, one actual bear encounter, one potential bear encounter and one cartwheeled baby in the lake, I am happy I can say that our family relationship is stronger than ever! 

I somehow deleted all of the pictures from the first few days of our trip, but we camped at Cataract Creek our first night and hiked to the falls the next day. It was a beautiful, spot in K-country. From there, we headed towards the Crow Nest Pass where we stopped at a spray park so Ryder could splash and get a "bath" of sorts. We BBQ'd hotdogs and headed to Fernie where all the campgrounds were full! We ended up staying in the parking lot at the ski hill. At least it was free. LOL We got up early in the morning and headed to Moyie Lake in BC.  We got there in time for lunch and we snagged an awesome campspot really close to the beach access. Moyie also had a great dog beach, so the whole family got to enjoy the water! :)  After a great beach day, we had our first fire of the trip.  Ryder missed it though cause he was already in bed. He slept awesome, by the way. The whole trip, he napped like a champ and he slept 11 or 12 hours every night! In the morning, we headed to lockhart Creek. I have those pics!!! :)

We stayed at Lockhart for a few days. Every morning we'd take Scout to the beach (ofcorse, it was a no dogs allowed beach,) but like most other dog owners, we assumed the sign wasn't for OUR dog and it certainly couldn't apply to first thing in the morning when no one else was up....

We'd throw sticks for her. She's nuts for sticks. Here, she's digging in the sand for her stick.

Here, Marty and Ryder and having morning snuggles while I throw the stick.

 Ryder ventured down to the water to watch Scout swim for sticks.
I am to the Ryder's left. So is Scout. I threw the stick and Scout took off after it, en route to her stick she completely cartwheeled Ryder into the lake! I mean she knocked him head over heels!!

Here is my poor, cold, wet baby!!!
Don't worry, he and Scout are still BFFs!!
Mom to the rescue. I wrapped him up in my hoodie! All warm!

 There was a great hike behind our campsite. I was kinda scared of bears, so we just went for a short little walk.

A guy Marty plays hockey with, has a summer house 2km from where we were camping. 
They have a boat and offered to take us to a beach you can only get to by boat!
Thank you!!

 Ryder loved his boat ride and he loved hangin on the boat even when it was parked.

 In the background you can see Scout's butt. She totally traded us in for another guy.
She just walked right over to him, cuddled up to him and started spooning. Hilarious!!

 They had a life jacket for Scout. She is not a terribly brave dog, but we wanted to see if we could get 
her to jump off the boat.
She did!!
 One night, after Ryder was asleep, the wind came up. Marty raced down to the beach so he could kite before it got dark!

After a few days at Lockhart we headed down the road a few km to Gray Creek where our neighbours in Calgary, have a family campground. We stayed there for two nights.

 Gray Creek is still on kootenay Lake so we hiked to the Pilot Bay lighthouse and climbed the stairs to the top. 

 We also hiked to Sawmill Bay where the whole beach was just layers and layers of sawdust.

 Our neighbours came on the hike with us and brought their dogs, Enzo....

...and Lola.

Day 12, after having spent a good portion of our trip on the East bank of the Kootenays we took the Ferry to the West side.

We drove straight to the Kokanee Creek campground and spent our remaining days on the west side, there at Kokanee Creek.  Marty's Dad and Trish joined us for a few days there too. It was fun to see them and Ryder loved the extra attention. :)
 Kokanee Creek had a pretty nice beach! Lots of sand!

Ryder played with Gramma and Grampa!


 The weather on the West side was even warmer, so lots of time was spent wearing very little clothing! Yay!

 Watermelon is always best when it is HOT outside!

One day a Fire Rescue Chopper landed right in the campground! Cool!
 Ryder LOVES Gramma and Grampa's dog, Angel!!

 Grampa was an awesome babysitter. One day, he and Gramma stayed with Ryder while Marty, Scout and I went for a hike. At one point, Scout started acting weird. The hair on her back stood up and she began sniffing the air, not like she smelled steak on a BBQ, but like she smelled something...different.  We became super alert after that and....we actually SAW a black bear in the bushes beside us!!!! Well...Marty did! He pushed me behind him and grabbed Scout.  I panicked. I didn't cry, but I wanted to. I was soooo scared! I have always been  worried about running into a bear and finally we did!!! I reached into the pack for the Bear Spray but grabbed the bug spray instead. Marty thought it was funny. I did not!! The bear spray was on Marty's belt. Right where it should be.  Lucky for us the Bear took one look at Marty and ran the other way, but I was too scared to keep hiking. We turned around and headed back to camp. I felt bad for Scout who was quite enjoying her hike.

We were sad to leave Gramma and Grampa, but it was time we started the journey back home.  After the Ferry ride back to East Kootenay, we drove to White Sawn Provincial Campground. The place was infested with mosquitos and we could not find the campground host, so we didn't even get any wood for a fire. Booo!

The next morning, we wanted to get a jump start on the travel day so that we could arrive at our next destination with time for fun! Ryder though, was in NO mood for co operating. He spent the entire morning, screaming and crying and just being loud and difficult!! I am sure the campground applauded when we left...LOL

We arrived in Radium to sunshine and a great campground, Redstreak, with a much happier baby in tow.  Radium is only 3 hours from our house, but we have never camped there before. Turns out, we should. I loved it!! Beautiful campground and lots to do in the family friendly area...and a beach, my fav!!!

 Marty thinks this swim outfit is embarrassing, but I love it!! I was totally validated when a stranger came up to me and asked if she could take a pic of Ryder. She is a painter and said, she often gets her inspiration from the beach.  I wish i would have asked her to send me a painting if she chooses to paint one of RJ!!

 We only got to stay at Redstreak for one night. The next morning, after Marty fixed the flat tire on the trailer, we headed for home. Our family vacay over! 

Our two exhausted passengers in the backseat!