July 9, 2020
Cousin Week: Backyard Camping

We started the day early with a bike ride. Grandma, Auntie Yukiko, Matthew and Maria went for a 25km ride. Elizabeth and Erika went off up the locks somewhere and I took the little kids for a ride across Flora bridge. I was melting by the time I got back and it was only 9:30am.


The kids really wanted to go backyard camping and in the past cousin camp has included backyard camping together, so we decided to do it this week as well even though it was stinking hot (well over 35C).


Originally Auntie Yukiko was going to pitch her tent too but she ended up having to work early the next day and given the weather she decided to pass.


Uncle Chris and Auntie Yukiko came for supper and we made s'mores on the BBQ. I had totally forgotten about our Jr Church program moving to Thursdays, so we had a little delay while Elizabeth and Matthew paused for their small groups. After they were done we had a virtual campfire with the Teevens crew. We sang songs and told stories and tried to prevent Michael from doing grievous bodily harm as he flung himself around inside the tent. The kids have scattered rock shrapnel all over the backyard in course of their experiments with fire starting, so there were limited spaces where it was possible to pitch a tent without risking damage. We put the bigger one on the deck and the popup where the tree used to be. Erika and Elizabeth opted for the popup which I thought was great because I was worried about raccoons down there.


The girls were too hot so they got up and wandered around outside. Daddy put them to work watering the garden. We opened all possible flaps under the theory that if it rained we wouldn't be more uncomfortable than we were in the sweltering heat. Eventually it got dark and Michael abruptly passed out but not without some protesting that he wanted Daddy. It was quite pitiful - he didn't want to leave the tent but the bedtime routine requires his Daddy and he was SAD. With the sudden silence the rest of our tent (me, Matthew and Amelia) were able to sleep as well. Unfortunately I did not sleep well at all - when various children didn't startle me awake then an emergency service vehicle would go by sirens blazing. I don't know whether this noise is normally muffled by our windows but I was not amused by the noise pollution. Certainly some of the houses around here don't have good A/C and it would be reasonable to expect that extended siren noises would be quite disruptive in the wee hours of the night.


Although I felt a bit like I was keeping newborn hours, we did have fun and the kids are already demanding to know when we can camp again.

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