We decided to return to camping now that the weather has cooled off. We headed up to my favorite park, Fort Mountain State Park, during the first weekend in October.
We had a lot of fun once we got through the traffic up I-75. We set up the camper, unloaded the firewood, and made some jambalaya for dinner.
Ethan's reaction to his first campfire was priceless - he was "woo-ing" like normal, with his arms outstretched to either side (also like normal), and then he caught a glimpse of the fire as it flamed up. He stopped in his tracks and just stared. He looked at me. Then Daddy. Then back at the fire. Grinned. Then started "woo-ing" again.
We set up the pack and play on the convert-able dinette area and left our queen size bed set up like normal and put him to bed with minimal fuss. A typical night with diaper, jammies, book, nurse to sleep, with his sound machine and nightlight going.
Jeff and I proceeded to have (multiple) s'mores and we had a chance to reconnect as a couple - it was so, so, so nice. Those moments of peace and quiet, when it's back to just the two of you, are really rare. We were so grateful for it.
10PM rolled around and it was time for Ethan's dream feed, and our bedtime. While I sat and nursed, Jeff got ready for bed. And then...Ethan woke up, woke up - and was scared. He was sleepy but did not know where he was, why he was awake, what the heck we were doing, where was he sleeping, etc etc etc. I would hold him and was SURE he was asleep, and then put him in the pack and play and then... WAAAHHHHH. Jeff would do the same... then WAAAHHHHH again.
We finally ended up tearing down the pack and play. I slept on the dinette, while the baby slept with Jeff in the bed. We are NOT co-sleepers, so Jeff didn't sleep very well for fear of rolling onto the baby (who loves to snuggle up against you). There was only a thin buffer between my butt and the plywood, so I didn't sleep very well either.
The next morning was cold and called for rain. We were exhausted. So we decided to make breakfast, have a nice walk, and lunch, and naps, and then head home before spending the 2nd night.
Quitters? Yeah, maybe. But maybe we are just being smart parents, working with E's development as best we can. He is just not used to having anyone or any other noise in his room during night sleeps. This is great for 99% of the time when he is in his own room and crib, but not so great when we want to camp. So we have been smarter too - we rented a cottage with his own bedroom for our next trip (more on that soon).
We'll try camping all together again sometime, but maybe not for awhile.