December camping in Florida is amazing. The weather is no longer humid and night time temps are perfect for spending time around the fire. On this particular camping trip I was to take a father and 3 of his lovely daughters camping. Mom was home sick with the youngest but they did not want to cancel the trip last minute.
The girls we shy for about 2 seconds getting out of the car. Soon all their gear was unloaded in the tents and they were ready for adventure. Hiking is a great way to get rid of the overflow of excitement so off we went. We looked at oranges growing wild in the forest, Wild Coffee had beans showing off their bright colors, we also made sure everyone knew what poison ivy was!
The girls were having a blast showing Dad all kinds of treasures from the forest and before lone we came off the trail at the Pioneer Playground where they all had to try out the see-saw, tree swing and monkey bridge! It was time to cool of and wind down a bit so while Dad was checking out the museum the girls were coloring pictures of Crowley. Then we were off to meet the chickens, pigs and Jack, the new donkey. Jack is especially loving and a joy to spend time with. The girls so enjoyed petting him and the horses. All of us were taking burrs out of their manes making them look a bit better. One of the girls got a quick lesson in hoof maintenance and after a quick bareback ride around the corral hay was handed out and they were off to the zip line!
I have found that girls attention spans are much shorter than boys – but I was ready! There were frisbees to throw, hide and seek, they played catch, ran circles around each other and use the bathroom constantly!
To start slowing them up a bit they each got to make a nature bracelet and then finally dinner was ready. After dinner was smores – and a very warm fire. The girls played so hard that after a quick visit up to the parking lot to see the local astronomy club (and a great view of Jupiter) it was time to sleep! I was thinking morning would come early… I was right!
I got up at 4:30 am to get the fire going and water for coffee and hot chocolate. Dad was up 30 min later and almost instantly the girls were joining him. It would be another 2 hours for daylight and at least an hour for breakfast. Hot chocolate and the fire kept everyone occupied. Then a round of fencing with sticks they gathered from the forest floor. They were calling each other silly names in 5 different languages, always coming back to dad for a new one.
After filling their tummy it was time for another hike. We took some different trails and visited the zip line again. Soon it was time to pack up and go. One of the girls asked if she could come live with me there… I had to tell he that I did not live full time at the campground abut she could tell her mom how much fun she had and they could all come back again! That was the right answer and soon she and her sisters were running down the path to the fossil pit.
It was a joy to see these girls playing outside, not worrying about any cares of civilized life. I am sure I will get to see them again, the huntress, , the fearless one and the animal whisperer…..
Want to get your kids outside – reserve your camping trip with Not a Clue Adventures today!