Camping Meals, keeping it tasty and easy

Food was really a non issue.  We have shared meals for many years.  Rod and I cook for ten plus people very often.  As long as we had some food for 6 year old Arthur things rolled smoothly.  We had pizza twice (20$ each) and an amazing fish and chip meal(30$!).  one McDonalds meal(35$) and a giant diner meal with all of us in Marmora (60$).

We cooked everything on a two burner coleman stove.  There was a total fire ban almost our entire trip so not too many cooking over fire meals. We only went through three bags of firewood the entire trip.   We also had a big cast-iron pan.  Can’t live without that camping! We also had a lot of fresh corn.


We stopped at fresh farm stands every other day for peaches, and berries and plums.  Even kids love almost anything when it is this fresh.
Every stand usually had some kind of berry loaf.  I kept a knife in the front seat and we all had a yummy treat.  Of course we had good old trail mix granola bars.




Here was our menu:

  • Spatchcock chicken, with potatoes and salad.

I just cut my chicken on the backbone, threw it in a ziplock with oil, lemon pepper and garlic.  I cut up a second one and added oil and paprika.  Fried it skinside down for 15 minutes with the potatoes, turned it over and covered with foil.  Cook for 45-60 minutes and a yummy smelling easy dinner.

  • Rotini pasta with mushroom soup, left over chicken and pesto.
  • Manwich from a can with ground beef and cheese: good old Sloppy joes
  • Ravioli from a can
  • Spaghetti with tomato sauce with garlic and basil.
  • Corned beef hash with potatoes
  • Chili from a can with sour cream and nachos chips
  • Fresh perch and trout with farm stand green beans
  • good old Kraft dinner, and hot dogs
  • Ginnie gave Rod a salami of the month club membership for Father’s day so we had a beautiful big smoky beef salami.  Lots of salami sandwiches!
  • Peanut butter and Jam sandwiches
  • more salami sandwiches

I really discovered the joy of a simple camping kitchen.  Damn Canadian Tire with the fold out kitchen and portable hot water heater.  Why leave your kitchen to care for another kitchen in the dirt?  I have always looked at camping cooking as a break from my everyday life.  Keeping it simple is what it is all about.

Last but not least, good coffee made in my little two cup espresso maker.

Merchants of Green coffee coffee.


How can you afford this trip?!


My mom asked me, “How can you afford this trip?!”

And what stay in the city? The heat, the boredom. We don’t have air conditioning, air flow or even the shade from a tree on our house!

Every other kid is in day camp somewhere. At 200 bucks a week it really adds up. The girls have no friends around in the summer. The parks are empty of tweens.

It costs $75 for us all to go see a movie.

Heck these kids spend 10 bucks a day at 7/11.

The wading pools and splash pads are a good thing, if you’re a penguin!

That leaves us with more iCarly reruns.

No, we leave the city, Mom.

It can be so crazy here that we actually think this three week trailer tour will be easier. ’nuff said

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.