The work it takes to make it through this trip.

Rod is a workhorse.  You need a workhorse to do this.  He is a man who just gets it done.
I have done my fair share as well.  I try to keep all of our stuff organized, so we can get going quickly when we need to.. Sadly I have a horrible memory, so I keep forgetting where I put everything…  At least the trailer is small enough, that I do eventually find the stuff.

We had all good intentions on getting the kids to do some of the work.  Every kid would have their task when it came to packing up the trailer or setting up camp.  There all had a specific blog to keep up with.

At first, the endless driving seemed like work to Rod.  Now that he is used to it, It is  a vacation from the work.  It is an opportunity to look at the sights and get some fresh air.  The kids are buckled in.

The work really starts when we get to the campground.   Just pulling onto a site is a project in itself with the trailer, where you want to park the trailer, where you want the door of trailer, how you will back in or pull through the site.  If you do not give it enough thought, you will scratch the fender off.  

Then there is the levelling.  Travelling with little water in the tank, the trailer has to be levelled just right or the taps will not work.  Travelling with too much water, you can increase your load by a thousand pounds.  If do not stabilize it right, it feels like you are sleeping in a canoe.

Then, you let the kids of out of the car.  Crap falls out of the car, crap follows them around the site for you to pick up later, and the worthwhile crap gets lost in the crap in the car.  So much effort is put into charging all the electronics.  We are four laptops, three smart phones and a dumb phone.  Cords are constantly being mixed up and all you here, is That is my cord, No it’s mine!  Who cares?  Let’s just charge your itouch!

Charging station.

When the kids are at their best, 40%0of the time, one opens all the windows in the trailer and a couple take out the camping chairs.  But if we are stopping to camp, inevitably, it’s dinner time.  I laugh to think of what the other campers are thinking as we pull up in this old trailer with writing all over it.  The doors open, out come seven people and within 12 minutes, the kids are making noise sitting on chairs, Rod has removed the propane tank and set-up the outside stove and something is already cooking and we each have a beer in our hand.

sidebar: after tasting so many microbrewery craft beers, Id like to say one thing:  ENOUGH WITH THE HOPPS ALREADY.  We both like the hoppy beer, but hopps doesn’t make the beer.

Packing up takes a steady one hour.  Dishes, putting away the beds and laundry.

Always laundry, no matter where you go!

Laundry.  Our first weekend at Auntie Mo’s House, she did all of our laundry.  Bliss.   I have had to do laundry twice this trip.  If we were close to a comfort station with laundry, I took advantage of it.  I never had enough quarters.  My loads were always too big.  The first time we almost drove away from the campground leaving the clothes in the dryer!  What a save that was.  Three nights ago, we were folding laundry, a little drunk, at 11 pm.  We have a little sorting to through at the end of this trip with all those girlie underwear!

Then we have the blog.  I know we would boot have taken so many pictures had it  not been for the blog.  After twelve years and all these kids, we are a little lazy about taking shots any more.  The kids were good about taking pictures.  I overheated my lap in the car, uploading pics from my camera, Rod’s and the Nikon camera.  I have to admit, we missed a few turns because I was busy editing.  Rod says the first priority is figuring out where you need to go before you blog.  I tried, I really tried.


Our final day: Cypress Lake Grotto


Having walked the 3km hike to the Grotto from our campsite and back last night, we knew we needed a serious plan of attack to get the kids to do the hike.   Rod was really pumped, since I had told him to hold back from climbing down at Indian Head cove last night. We sold it as a day long adventure!  Pack awesome lunch and snacks!  Lots of points of interest on the way!  Ignore the grey skies, put your bathing suits on anyway! but bring a sweater.

So 5 PB&J and 3 salami sandwiches later, with three backpacks on our persons, we started on the hike.  The girls were having a rough morning and people were not getting along, so we just kept our spirits up and light and pointed our the rock shelves on Cypress lake, the dwarf cedars and bizarre root systems.  Are we there yet?  Are we half way there?  Are we a quarter of the second half way there?

We did get there.  And all the problems and fights and long hikes were forgotten.

It was so different from the evening before when Rod and I went.  Last night there was not a soul and the water still.  Today it was full of people on very piece of cliff, just looking out at Georgian Bay.  There were six foot swells hitting the rocks.  Even though the skies were grey the colour of the water was beautiful.  Apparently, it is only in this bay that you will find this colour on the entire planet.  The algea only grows in our waters.  Cold waters.

Of course, we had to swim in it.  Ruby was right in there.  Stay away from the rocks!!  The waves will knock you right into them.  She was tiny on the big rocks and crashing waves.  Rod got in, and Josie and I followed him.  It was co-old, people. Cold and super clean.  The water felt incredible and Josie and I waded on the rocky bottom in the waves for like 15 minutes.  You just didn’t want to get out, the view was so beautiful.

We then hiked the cliff up and then down the face of the grotto.  The kids found a cave deeper in side and they all climbed in it.  The only light we had was the flash so they took the camera and flashed to peek inside.

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We then climbed out and higher and down again through tight rocks into this gorgeous little grotto with a pool inside.  It was magical.  A tunnel came into the cave and shone light into the pool.  A good swimmer might be able to swim from the grotto to the outside on Georgian Bay if it weren’t for the waves.  Ruby and Josie jumped in.  They were the only ones who still had their bathing suits on.  DANG!  Ruby jumped off her second cliff of the vacation.

We then climbed around across the rock onto Boulder beach.  That is what it is.  A beach of boulders.  Thousands of boulders, big and small just lying there, with pretty purple flowers growing out between them.

When we finally reached the campsite, everyone was tired but satisfied.  Rod went to get us a fabo steak, played a few rounds of cards with the kids, made tacos and took it easy.

Rod also bought his souvenir for the trip:  his very own pair of wooly moccasins.

We watched the sun set over Cypress Lake.  It was nice but what was cool were the two sun dogs(mini rainbows) in the clouds on either side.

Amazing way to end our adventure.