spilling my guts,  travel

Getting Ready and a New Camera!

hamming for the new camera

When are we leaving on our camping trip? That’s what we’re all wondering, you and me both. We were scheduled to leave Tuesday or Wednesday of this week but we’ll be lucky if we leave by Thursday. I’m actually fine with that, as I’m quite used to Toby’s work schedule. I just hope we leave before we are scheduled to come home. I’m kidding…mostly.

The good news is this allows me plenty of time to get ready for this trip. I’ve got a great big list that I add to and check off daily. I won’t lie to you, while I’m very excited to go on a big adventure with my little family, I’m also a bit scared. I’ll just list my fears to save time.

1. Food. I’m the matriarch these days and that means I need to remember that we need to eat three times a day. It’s up to me to make sure hunger doesn’t ruin our fun. We’ll do most of our shopping up north before we head up the mountain but I still need to have a plan. We can’t just go shopping willy nilly and live off twinkies for a week.

2. Water. As in the water in the lake is what I’m afraid of. Not the drinking water, though now that I mention it I should probably worry about that too. We will be next to a lake with a small person who cannot swim for a whole week. I’m having nightmares about her drowning.

3. Bugs. We don’t have a problem with mosquitos here so I am completely unprepared for flying/crawling things that can bite. Hasn’t it recently been proven that Deet causes cancer or something? Should I rub garlic on our skin? Marigold oil? I have no clue. I feel like a city slicker.

4. Shoes. Toby instructed me to buy water-shoes. I nearly went postal today at REI trying to find water sandals in my size. Apparently, the season is over and they sold all the size 7’s over Labor Day. I did find some that fit but they are butt-ugly. I wanted to buy the cute ones but they chafed at the heel. Comfort is more important than vanity when hiking and camping right?

5. Clean clothes. I’m trying desperately not to wear the clothes I want to pack but as the days go by I’m thinking I’m going to have to make another last minute trip to the laundromat. Also what will the weather be like? Warm in the day, cold at night? What does that mean? Pack everything? Ack.

6. What to do about this blog while I’m gone. I haven’t lined up any guest posters. I may have cell phone reception which means I could upload phone photos with a brief description… I could create a little back log of eye-spy posts. I might do that… who knows. I might just hang up a “gone fishin'” sign and call it a week off.

I think that’s about it. Though I’m sure I’ll think of seventy other things to worry about before we leave.

However I meant to write about my new camera! Remember how the waterproof minivan dolt camera died after I took those killer under-water shots? Well, I took it to Ritz and they said they’d fix it or give me a new one is four to six weeks. Six weeks finally rolled around and I got a letter with a gift card saying I could buy another camera because they couldn’t fix it and they no longer carried anything comparable. Usually that would be good news except when I stopped in to check out what they did sell they had nothing good to offer. We are camera snobs in this family and I wasn’t about to settle.

I came home dejected. But then Toby said he’d order me the new Canon waterproof camera and use my gift card to buy something for himself like a CF card or something that he needed anyway. Great plan, I said. Two days later a box from B&H arrived and it was like I got a really cool anniversary present.

new water-proof camera!

september flowers

So I’ve been testing it. I’m not quite ready to write a full review but it’s cool. It’s definitely idiot proof. It’s slick looking, I think. It sort of reminds me of a tiny submarine, which is appropriate. Best of all it’s survived my purse for the last week (which everyone knows is more treacherous than anything you’d ever find in nature). I think it will work.


  • Jennifer

    That’s a wild looking camera. I’m all excited about your trip, it sounds like so much fun. If you need to drop by and do a few loads of laundry before you leave, come on over!

    As for mosquitos, I really wanted to try one of those personal mosquito fan thingies, but there aren’t any mosquitos around to use them on.

  • bethany actually

    Re: mosquitos, it’s probably cold enough up there by now that you won’t really have to worry about them at night. But if you want to be prepared anyway, try the kind of repellent that has lemon eucalyptus in it, that’s supposed to be good and not as toxic as DEET.

    Re: water shoes, what do you need them for? I’ve been canoeing and hiking many times where I just wore plain old sneakers in the water (everything from cheap Keds knock-offs to old running shoes) and they work just fine. They take a bit longer to dry, but they protect your feet. I’d offer to let you borrow my water shoes since we wear the same size, but I don’t own any. Doh!

    Re: weather, just like at home, think layers! You can wear the outer layers lots of times without washing when you’re camping. Also, you can sit around wrapped up in blankets if you need to. ;-)

  • gingermog

    Lol before I read your own suggestion to a hang a “gone fishing” sign I thought to myself, “hmm she should just relax and hang a gone fishing sign on her blog”. Great minds think alike. My water shoes are a pair of old turquoise “jelly ” shoes from the early 90’s. Retro style? Mmm kind of but they do have glitter mixed in with the blue plastic. Have a great holiday and your new camera looks fab xx

  • Ruth

    You’re such a planner! I love it. Sounds like it’s going to be a great trip–and if you need a guest poster if you decide to do that, I’m sure we’ll all line up!

  • jastereo

    It should tell you something about me that I was looking at a few of the Flickr pics yesterday and was like…what’s a Powershot D10? (as I usually know which is which, hello…NERD) So I of course looked it up and was like…so cool, they got the new waterproof one! Great shots so far, happy shooting (Bug too) and hope you guys have a great time on the trip. Get the some OFF, max amount of deet, it’s only for a week and there’s nothing worse than having to deal w/ mosquitos (or bites) while “roughing it”.

  • Alexandra

    Some thoughts on food . . something fun and easy we like to do are the little campfire packets – just put some hamburger, sliced potatoes, carrots, onions (or other veggies on a large square of foil, top with a pat of butter, salt and pepper, double wrap with some foil into a packet, and put in the coals until “done”. Easy to find all these ingredients and somehow even something so plain tastes so good And dont’ forget some smores too!

  • Alexandra

    also, i agree with Bethany on not “needing” water shoes – just use some old sneakers – as long as you don’t mind having damp feet and can let them dry out at night. They work fine.

  • Nicole

    1. So I know deet is suppose to be bad for you and everything, but after living in the south for the last 3 summers, I can attest that is the only thing that works. At this time of year in Northern Cal. though you probably wont need it at night like someone else said, and you might be able to get away with something like 15% during the day instead of the 50% I have to use here in TN.
    2. If you are worried about drinking water, I reccomend one of the these: http://www.rei.com/product/402099. Its nice because it packs small but can hold 5 gals. of water.
    3. Comfortable shoes are way better than cutie when camping, but I agree its still nice to have shoes be both.
    4. I second Alexandra’s food idea. We call it ho-bo stew, and did this the last time we went camping (used stew meat instead of hamburger) stuck it in the coals for about 15-20 minutes (flipping the packet once) and it was soooo good.

    Have fun!

  • nicole

    i like the gone fishing sign idea…so old school in a new school setting…remember to swing by our house if you are on 80…we are right at an exit!

  • Erin

    Yay for camping! You wear the same size shoes as Bethany (and me incidentally)? But you are so much talller……
    Enjoy nature! Don’t forget hat and gloves if it will be under 65deg.
    For future reference – I bought some bright orange Land’s End water shoes that I love. They are really more like go out and get the mail shoes right now, but just wait till next summer. http://www.landsend.com/pp/WaterShoes~200149_253.html?bcc=y&action=order_more&sku_0=::LTU&CM_MERCH=SRCH_00002&origin=search

  • a chris

    Ha! The matriarch thing made me laugh. I was saying the same thing to my husband the other week. When we go out (even shopping on a Saturday) I have to remember to arrange frequent feeding stops or husband and baby get really unhappy. Me, I used to go hours and forget until it was too late and his mood was in a tailspin. Now I’m outnumbered! Screwing up is less of an option now that there’s a small person involved.

    As for water shoes: if you make do without, just make sure there’s always something else to change into. You do not want feet you can’t get dry.

    Have a great trip!

  • Madisen

    Our family (who lives in florida) Has found that when we go camping in either the Inter Coastal Waterways, Or North/South Carolina, We pack the Citronella candles and burn them around the campsite.
    As for food, we love the Hobo stew, but a great thing to pack is the sweet and salty peanut bars by Nature Valley. Those are awesome!
    I never wear water shoes here in Florida. We wear Crocs (or imitations of them by Airwalk. You can get them for like, $10) Our family loves their Crocs.
    For food: take potatoes and LOTS of aluminum foil. We use a TON.
    Thats all my advice!
    Good Luck!

  • BeachMama

    Glad to hear you are still heading out camping. I was starting to wonder if you changed your plans or had gone already and stocked up on posts.

    Out of all your worries, I agree that water is the biggest one. Each year when our pool goes up I stress and don’t sleep worrying about the kids. Thankfully this year we just removed the ladder from the pool when we weren’t in it on top of locking all the doors and I slept much better.

    Don’t worry about getting ugly water shoes, you, Bug and Toby are the only ones that will see them :).

    And I love your new camera, seems pretty funky and so far the photos are all coming out amazing.

  • Aunt Jaynette

    Last time we were up there we used the BBQ every night. Chicken, burgers and hot dogs. We did all our shopping at Winco. You do need a plan though.

    You might want to give our MIL a call. When I talked to her today she didn’t know when or if you were still coming.

    The lake water is probably very low.

  • erin

    For mosquitoes, we’ve always used Avon “Skin so Soft”. It doesn’t smell too bad, and isn’t all chemically-and-whatnot.

    It works amazingly well

  • Blue Kaeru

    I hope you do do a full review. We were considering that camera for my youngest (budding photographer who left his hand-me-down outside in the *rain*) as I am a Canon fan but it got mixed reviews.

    And I completely understand your fears about camping by water. My parents lived aboard when my oldest was Bug’s age and while he loved spending time alone with his grandparents, I was always nervous (especially as the water has a great deal of tannin and is BLACK). We had him in a boating harness at all times. Another time we had a reunion at the beach with a house with a book and 4 stories with my youngest and easy access to the pool through sliding doors and NO stair gates. A restful vacation- NOT!

    Bug spray is the way to go. I’ve tried other things, but in the woods, camping you want to be well covered or you’ll be miserable.