Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Camping and BMX Weekend

If we are friends on Facebook, maybe you have seen some of my pictures of the kids riding bikes on a BMX  track.  Last September my friend Brandy asked me to bring the kids to a track in Powder Springs.  WHERE?!?!  I opened WAZE and immediately didn't like the idea.  50 minutes away?! UGH!  Isn't there a BMX track IN Atlanta? Well, no. No there isn't. 
Of course now 6 months later,  this a is a sport that the boys are totally into and boy, 
 would I love for them to practice every day.  (They are soooooo worn out and sweaty after riding)  Yet with a nearly 2 hour drive each time we go, I just can't.  Especially during the week. 
The track we frequent most is Cobb County BMX and it's awesome!  The people are nice and so helpful to anyone who is clueless about this sport.   🙋
The bike track has a walking track around it, so when Im there I am walking with a friend or a podcast.  It's fun.  It's just THAT DRIVE. 
When I learned about the Gold Cup/State Qualifier race weekend in McDonough GA (1.5 hour south of  us) I immediately thought ...I do not want to drive down there both Saturday and Sunday!  haha
I ran the idea of camping by Ernesto and he was down for I opened up the GA Parks website and found two great options not suuuuuuper close to the track but closer...  Unfortunately planning a week out (which is really good for us) is not enough.  Everything was booked!   Wha-waaamp. 
A week later, on Thursday morning I opened the site again and wa-la!  Someone had cancelled in an "electric" campsite. YES!  I booked right away and started immediately looked up a "camping essentials" list.  
We had most of the stuff already.  I had been collecting gear for a camping trip in February with our friends Virginia & Rodney in Florida, but it got rained out.  Everything was sitting in tubs, ready to go. I went to Walmart and bought all our food and an electric skillet. Let's camp!!

We arrived High Falls State Park around 630 pm on Friday night.  Of course I would've like to have gotten set up BEFORE dark, but for some reason, we couldn't get out of the house earlier?!?!
Oh well, you have to just go with the flow in the Espinoza household or you would be irritated all the time trying to get Ernesto things moving quicker.
Our site, even though we had no choice of the location, was a great spot.  We were in a cul-da-sac, not too close to the bathroom, but close.  The river ran along the sites across the street from us, so we still got to hear the rushing water. 
The kids busted out their scooters and rode around with their headlights while Ernesto and I set up the tent (a Coleman 6-person with easy set up). We started a fire and got to roasting. 
We woke up early the next morning, started another fire immediately because we had to heat the water for coffee.  I bought this kettle at Walmart and the little pot from Goodwill.  I got water boiling and broke out our French press.
Now I LOVE coffee from a French press, but we drink a lot of coffee and my press only produces 2 cups a time😭. I had to keep two pots of water going  so I could start steeping one after the other.  This may be considered "glamping," but next time we have an electric site, Im bringing a coffee pot. 🤷 
The skillet, on the other hand worked out perfectly. The boys made sausage patties one morning and chorizo and eggs the next. 
Paloma took charge of washing the dishes afterwards.
March is pretty much Spring weather in GA, so it was a bit chilly at night, but everyone stayed warm in their sleeping bags.  We had air mattresses too (again with the glamping). 
One night Ernesto took a mattress to the back of the van to sleep.  The kids thought that was funny and went to wake him up in the morning. 

The park gets its name from its biggest attraction, the High Falls, which are fed by the mighty Towaliga River. Along with multi-tiered falls, the park also famous for its clear lake and big dam. Unfortunately we did not make it on any hikes but we did spend the two mornings playing by the river. 

While we were ohh-ing and aww-ing at the river and climbing trees, Mateo was chomping at the bit to leave the park.  He did not want to climb trees or "do pictures." He wanted to GET TO THE TRACK!  Im telling you, he is obsessed!! I snapped this one, just so I can remember the intensity of him wanting to leave.   Oh! And check out the dam!
After getting to the camp site on Friday we talked about maybe just going to the state race on Sunday instead of going both Saturday AND Sunday. Then we could enjoy the camp ground. It was, after all our FIRST camping trip.  Mateo really wanted to go though so Ernesto said, Ill take the kids, you can stay at the campground.  AND I DID! 
There was no contact with them once they left either.  ALONE.  NO SERVICE. OUT OF TOUCH! It was an awesome feeling.  I painted, journaled, biked, walked, contemplated life (and parenting) sitting along side of the river. After about 7 hours when it started getting dark I was ready and anxously awaiting their return from the race.  And guess what?
Mateo brought home first place! He was so happy and proud.  I was so happy to see him so happy!
The next day, we packed up our campsite and we all went to the track for day two of racing. 
They both placed in two exciting races...Then promptly passed out in the car on the ride home. 
I’m a big fan of tired kids! Also , I’m a big fan of camping.  We have to do this more often!  Of course, I 
would rather do it in an Airstream but Ill take a tent for now.  I figure that the more Ernesto moves from the tent to the back of the van to sleep, the quicker he will realize that we NEED one! 


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