Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Hive's maiden voyage

It's the month of CRAZY, which means that the well intentioned plans of allowing me to get some office hours (and eat my cake, too) have already well fallen by the wayside.

In preparation for a summer of camping plans, the girls are (right this very moment!) scootched into their respective sleeping bags on their respective air mattresses in their respective corners of a monstrously huge tent that I snagged off of Amazon last November.

Let's detour for a full on minute as I talk about the saga of the tent, 2014.  Last summer for our camping, we utilized the two-tent model as our girls are not big fans of sleeping within sight and sound of each other.  By that I mean that NO ONE sleeps when they're within sight and sound of each other.  And, personally, after a long day of hiking and camping whatnot, I don't have much patience for childish shennanigans of "I can see her!" and "I can hear her!" and "He's breathing too close to my ear!"

That last one is actually my own grievance and why I very earnestly wish to join the 25% minority of American couples who do quite well, thankyouverymuch, sleeping in separate bedrooms.

I digress.  As always.  Late last summer, we started THE SEARCH for a new tent that would be large enough with a room divider to house two girl childs who while they could still hear each other could not actually see each other.  I found one, on clearance nonetheless.  After struggling with it and two children through the store and while trying to pack a regular shopping trip's worth of groceries around it, then working on my best imitation of a pack mule lugging that heavy thing out of the store while balancing the Younger on her perch on the cart, I realized that it really didn't fit in my car.  But I massaged it into place full on between two car seats and well into my driving space since I thought surely, oh surely, this will fit in the car that we take when we go camping.  Oh my no, it did not.  Technically, it fit but it by no means fit in such a way that would allow us to also take something like a cooler.

When you can't fit the tent in the SUV, the tent must be returned.  And in so doing, I spent the extra $20 and got the one that was all well and fine.  We weren't convinced that it would have the space requirements that we thought would work best, but it was still a whole lotta better than our small 4-person dome tent, which was never what we would qualify as spacious.  Not that a tent should be spacious, exactly.  But it's not a long-term tent for our family.  And life went on.

But then I happened upon the queen bee of Coleman tents.  In fact, I might just start calling this The Hive as it really can fit a swarm of us all in there at the same time.  I heard through the grapevine that my sister-in-law thinks we could all of us hang out in our tent with room to spare should rain find us when we take a family camping trip this summer.  A bit of a stretch...BUT NOT MUCH.

This tent, my friends, could almost be permanently attached as a one-season room (of sorts) to our back patio door and thereby nearly double the square footage of our house.  It might incite a curious bit of interest on our house when we come to sell it.  It has THREE rooms, all of which are bigger than our original dome tent. 

(I have since realized that this is not really a detour in the post but the gist of the post.)

Well, The Hive is standing all proud and tall in our backyard right now with what sounds like two sleeping girls in it.  Sounds like sleeping girls?  Sounds like nothing...which sounds like wonderful!

(The boy centered the role of patrolling the bedtime festivities firmly on his shoulders, but at one point, n-i-n-e-t-y minutes into the "fun" and "good times," stomped into the house with a brusque "Nearly drives a man to drink..."  But that triggered some thought about some delicious ginger beer that I got him once, and I knew then that he wasn't heading for the liquor store so much as taking a moment to collect himself.)

The Younger was all about doing anything but sleeping until it got dark enough to help her realize that NO, this isn't hands-on play time and YES, you should be calm and quiet and NO, you shouldn't continue to unzip the door and YES, we are serious when suggest that you zip the trap and shut those peepers!  Forty-five minutes in, she wanted to touch the grass ("It's soft!").  Fifty minutes in, I heard giggling together because the Elder was supposedly rubbing the Younger's feet.  There was quite a lot of tattling about "She's out of bed again!" even though in so doing, the Elder was (wait for it) likewise out of bed again. 

But the boy was determined, and give in he did not.  And, as I began to type these thoughts out, I realize that for our upcoming camping trips, WE NEED TO BRING LOTS OF GINGER BEER.  Or something.


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