Taylor Park May 2007

Camping at Taylor Park
Memorial Day Weekend, 2007

On Friday night after work we all finally decided to go to Taylor Park for the weekend, so we started packing and making shopping lists, and by 8:30pm we were ready to go … except we hadn’t had dinner or bought any groceries to make meals when we got there. Oh well, that’s kind of how it usually works with our family. So we packed up my car and Tiffany and Shaun’s truck and drove down to Arawan, our favorite little neighborhood Thai place. We had a great dinner and decided to forgo the grocery shopping and just head down there. I think we probably arrived at 10:30pm or so and started setting up camp with a mini mag-lite and a couple of keychain LEDs. We got it done and hit the sack by midnight or so to catch a little sleep before Allie woke us up to start the day bright and early.

I was the last one to wake up as usual, so at about 9:00am we headed out to breakfast at Swiss Village–another long standing tradition (though never before for breakfast, I don’t think). After breakfast Mom, Grandma and I went to the store to get some supplies for the camp and to buy groceries and a birthday cake, while Tiffany, Shaun and Allie went back to Taylor Park to let Allie take a swim in the river. The rest of the day was spent cleaning up, chopping wood, building and tending the fire, roasting hot dogs, eating tacos and birthday cake, playing games and just relaxing together. It was a good time.

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The Fire
Shaun's Wood Chopping Area
Mom, Shaun & Tiffany Playing Rook
My Tent
Allie & Shaun with Sadie
Tiffany and Allie
Tiffany and Allie
Tiffany & Allie Blowing Out the Candles
Tiffany, Allie & Sadie
Grandma and Mom
My Car
Shaun & Tiffany's Truck
Tiffany & Allie Swinging
Shaun and I
Allie and Grandma
Tiffany, Allie, Grandma & Mom
Tiffany, Allie, Grandma & Mom
Shaun and I

My Grandparents built this fire pit with flat stones that they gathered from the river and brought back to the campsite. Many of the stones have broken from the heat of the fire over the years, but it still looks pretty nice. Shaun chopped a bunch of wood and he and I made the fire and kept it going all day. It has been a while since we've been allowed to have a fire, so we thoroughly enjoyed it.

Shaun's wood chopping area.

It's not a trip to Taylor Park until we play Rook. I could have cheated with this photo, but I promise I didn't. Tiffany and I lost to the newcomer and the person who doesn't like games. It was still fun, though.

My tent had been sitting in a bag for far too long, so I let Shaun, Tiffany and Allie use it this weekend. It's pretty small for three, but I think they did okay.

Shaun and Tiffany brought their puppy Sadie with them. She was actually pretty good while we were there. She was enjoying getting to run around outside a bit.

It was Tiffany's birthday on Saturday, so we got a cake and celebrated. I think Allie enjoyed it the most. She was excited about her "party cake".

As I said, Allie enjoyed it the most.

Tiffany let Allie join her in making a wish and blowing out the candles.

Allie gets a kiss from Sadie.

Recently Grandma has had some increased trouble walking, especially on the uneven surfaces of the campground, so she used her new wheelchair a bit, and she really enjoys sitting in it, which is good. We also got a new umbrella for that spool-table, and Grandma is crocheting a new tablecloth for it. The old umbrella and tablecloth were both full of holes from sparks from the fire. They were pretty sad looking.

This was the first time my car had been at Taylor Park, and the first time I've had a Taylor Park sign to put in the windshield.

Although I would never want to pay for the gas for this truck, it's nice to have it in the family to haul all the camping gear and coolers back and forth. There are a few things we will definitely need it for in the future, like replacing the old BBQ that shoots flames out of the rusted fuel lines.

We used to have two swings at the camp site, but we had to take the other one down because one of the trees it was attached to was on its last legs. That was a sad day, but we still really enjoy the one we have.

Shaun let me borrow his gloves, and I was slowly trying to burn the piles of branches that had been swept up over the years. The time spent just messing with the fire is some of the nicest and most relaxing time.

Allie got to eat her first campfire roasted hot dogs on this trip, and she has a little bit of evidence left over on her face. She had a great time and we had a great time being around her.

Shaun's hat just happened to fit her just right. She was just trying to decide how to wear it.

With her hat in this particular configuration and with the particular expression she has on her face we all couldn't help but see the incredible resemblance to her daddy.

It was a little effort for her, but we were glad Grandma joined us at the table for dinner. She was glad to be there, too. Taylor Park is a special place for all of us, especially for her.

Four generations enjoying a meal around the picnic table.

The same shot, but with Allie pulled back a bit so you could see Grandma's face. She is enthusiastic about just about everything.

This was only Shaun's second time to Taylor Park, and the first time when I was there with him. We're all glad he likes playing games. We always need four people and when our cousins aren't there, four people who like playing games are hard to come by, but we convinced Mom to play this time and it was fun. We let her win so she would play again.  ;)