Camping Food, Take Two

I survived yet another year of Labor Day camping escapades.  Not that I ever question surviving camping itself.  It's the return to real life that doesn't always go so well.  I am joining in for my first math party of the semester tonight.  Hopefully it helps with the frustration I'm already feeling.  Oh, proofs.  Oh, grad school.  I really hope "the swing of things" comes soon.
But this weekend was a wonderful distraction from reality.  Granted, it was a very different camping trip.  We've been camping with the S family (think S as in NES) for 12(?) years now.  Usually we go to Jamaica State Park.  This year, they were closed, then open, then closed for the weekend due to Tropical Storm Irene. The rivers were still high and very silty.  It was quite a sight.  So we ended up at Fort Dummer State Park instead.  It wasn't Jamaica, but it was pretty nice anyway.  We were also missing more than half of the people who usually come, just because things were so up in the air until basically the last minute.  No, not basically.  Until the very last minute.
And, well, it was different because for the first time, NES and I weren't just childhood friends.
It was like a mushroom world there, though.  I can only guess it is from the inches and inches of rain Irene brought them.  Then, it rained again on Sunday night -- we had quite an amazing thunderstorm -- and there were even more mushrooms everywhere.  Just everywhere.
Some of them were huge.  I would not want to come upon this in the dark.  It would be scary.
I know last time we had really unusual camping food.  Camping with mom and dad is very different.  It's partially my fault, because I like to have the same things.  It's tradition.
One night, we have grilled cheese with tomato and tomato soup.  Sometimes we cook the sandwiches in a sandwich cooker over the fire, but this year we didn't.  Usually, I would rather just have grilled cheese than have it with tomato, but this was the best tomato I have had all summer.  It was phenomenal.  Who knew that a simple tomato slice could make such a difference in a grilled cheese?  So that's dinner number one.

We also have steak tips and potatoes over the grill.  With fresh green beans.  Yum.  The potatoes are so simple -- they are a foil packet, so they are not messy and cook faster than a regular baked potato.  They are simply thinly sliced potatoes, garlic salt and some cooking spray or butter.  So easy, but so good.  They are mom's summer specialty.  She might not know that.  Now she does.
Finally, we had a dinner of ziti with zucchini in the sauce.  Plus a full plate of our own cucumbers and tomatoes.  This is what makes having a garden worth it!
You just have to have pancakes for breakfast.  And bacon.  Come on.  It's camping.

And eggs and bacon.  Also necessary.

The gigantic marshmallow roasted after breakfast over the morning fire?  Maybe not a necessity, but not regretted either.  Giant marshmallows are now one of my favorite things.  Ever.

Then there are the fluffernutters, blts, trail mix and cheese and crackers (fresh from the cheese co. store!) for lunches.
This is what makes camping camping.  Along with the people, the relaxing, and the little white puppy dog who tends to turn a grey-ish brown by the end of the weekend.
But there's still the memory of the disaster Vermont has been through in the past two weeks.  It was weird not being in the park that holds all the memories of Labor Day past.  And it's just so sad to think of all the people who lost homes, businesses and their way of life.  I missed my usual haunts this weekend.  And I can't wait to be back up there soon supporting them and other Vermonters!  My prayers are with them.


  1. Camping food always tastes so good! Thanks for the blog!


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