This past weekend, we took our family camping in Yosemite. I would definitely recommend this National Part to anyone and everyone who will listen. It is absolutely breathtaking! I would recommend camping too, even though I have admitted openly that I hate everything about camping except the memories we make every time we do it.
In the second picture, I am standing with my whole family on a bridge under Yosemite Falls being absolutely drenched with water. There is so much joy in my kids faces. I loved it! I loved so much about this trip. We went with Ben’s cousin who has 4 kids, who my kids adore and his aunt and uncle who we adore as well. We stayed at a nice camp ground in tents close together. The camp ground had great bathrooms with showers, a pool, a little shop and a petting zoo. There was a lot of dirt and bugs, but my kids never said they were bored even once. My youngest entertained himself with sticks and rocks and everyone was happy.
The first day we hiked to the waterfall pictured above. It was a great and tiring hike and I believe everyone slept very well that night. When we returned, we set up our tents and roasted hot dogs and s’mores for dinner. We woke up the next morning and hiked the mist trail, which has a funny and endearing story behind it. The last time we came to Yosemite about 5 years ago, we hiked that trail together. Our kids were all sick and throwing up and one of my kids fell over the edge and almost died. Ben’s cousin was carrying his son on his shoulders and his son threw up on his head. I was nervous to do this hike, but it was so much better this time around. We have a nice fond memory to replace the old one. We did a couple more hikes that day. We found a rock garden and built rock structures for a while and the kids enjoyed climbing around.
There is just something about being unplugged and surrounded by the most beautiful of God’s creations that engenders real connection. These are some of my very favorite views from the hikes!
So, even though I don’t love the sleepless nights, the peeing in the bushes, smelling like a campfire, and being dirty and itchy, I love the memories and bonds that are somehow forged in the great outdoors. I love the scenery and the fresh air and looking at the stars and slowing down enough to remember why we are all here and put in families. It is a great reminder of a loving God and being part of something bigger than ourselves. Here is a couple of my favorite group shots.
There is no way to put into words the beauty and majesty of Yosemite, but it will forever be one of my favorite places. Thanks for the great memories, Jason and Ashley, and Mont and Michelle. I love being a Tanner!