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Christmas Camping

So I thought I would take a quick break from Baja blogging to share our Christmas camping trip. Cory and I both come from big amazing families that we love, but that can make the holidays a little crazy! When we got married one of the things we wanted to do was carve out some time to do something special for Christmas and create our own tradition. Camping was the easy answer for us. It is something we both love and enjoy. It provided us with a quiet place where we could talk and reflect and slow our lives down a little, and there is something magical about snowy woods on Christmas.

Our tradition goes something like this: We try to camp either December 23rd or 24th depending on my (Deanna's) work schedule. If its the 24th, we go after spending the evening with my family. We leave Kodi and Prune at home...they don't enjoy winter camping and since we are only gone for the night, they are happy to stay at home where its warm. We sit by the fire, talk and read the Christmas story. In the morning we wake up, have coffee and Cory makes a special breakfast he has planned out ahead of time.

This year our camp trip fell on the 24th, as I worked the 23rd. We decked out Luna with a wreath and pretty Christmas lights. After, spending the evening with my family we headed to our camp spot at around 10 pm, in the dark with snow coming down. We decided to pick a lean-to site. We prefer the lean-to sites that our county parks provide, as they make winter camping pretty simple. Cory got to setting up camp and starting a fire, while I took a million pictures. I couldn't quite capture the beauty of the snow quietly falling on the pretty colored lights we had around the car.

Once we were all set up. We sat by the fire, talked, read the Christmas story and tucked in for bed. I wish I could tell you we both slept wonderfully, but not all camp trips are amazing. We both had a rough night of sleep. The wind was blowing hard, causing the pretty snow to blow in the shelter, directly on us... on our faces, on the dog, on our sleeping bags... everywhere. Also where we camp is by a lake that had a small amount of open water, resulting in us being serenaded by hundreds of geese all night. We woke up tired and cold.

Once we were awake, Cory got the fire going better, coffee boiling and we started to look around at the beauty around us. It was quiet and bright and snowy. It felt like we were in a snow globe. It was one of those moments you can never really explain, where you are just in awe of God's creation.

Cory outdid himself with breakfast, it was amazing! We had coffee with egg nog instead of creamer, whipped cream and Christmas sprinkles. For breakfast he made a french toast, with a berry sauce, and a mascarpone cheese filling. He made this all that morning in a cast iron pan over an open fire! It was so good it may be our tradition to have it every year, last year we tried a dutch baby and it didn't go to well!

After breakfast we walked around the edge of the lake enjoying the peacefulness and snowy landscape. We decorated a small pine tree with some ornaments we brought from home.

Camping is funny sometimes... I stress so much about packing, getting ready, and getting out there. We don't always sleep well, sometimes we mess up what we are cooking, we argue, or we forget something. Its not always as pretty or as fun as it looks in pictures, but it always fills up something in my soul that I need. I always leave feeling refreshed in my heart and like I can breath again.

I am so thankful to have a husband who values the same things and is crazy enough to pack up the truck and go camping on Christmas Eve with me!

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