Camping – Good for the Soul

Puppy Smiles
Daisy Mae Moe smiles watching the sunset

We are just returning from a long weekend in the Outer Banks of North Carolina (OBX). Which is just about as close to heaven as you can get without going through the trouble of dying.  The Outer Banks is an incredibly unique place where you can watch the sun rise over the ocean, walk across a tiny strip of land and watch it set over the sound. There’s something for everyone. Those that love a good beach town with lots of things to do – head to Duck or Corolla. And those, like us, who enjoy a bit more solitude, head south to Rodanthe or Avon. While we’re looking forward to the time where we won’t need to pack in a week of relaxation into a few days that perfectly align to teacher work days and tiny crevices of time carved out of everyone’s schedule; we don’t want to rush it. Because, that time when every moment is all ours means we’ve entered a new kind of world, one where Miss Moe is on her own. While we’re excited for that time for all of us – none of us are quite ready for that. So, as we move toward our respective journeys we insist on having fun along the way. Why is camping so good for you? Especially people that have teenagers that have all the things they can imagine? Here are our reasons:

  • We remember how little we need, and appreciate how much we have
  • Returning to nature is restorative, and all of the big worries seem insignificant standing on the edge of the giant ocean
  • Abandoning distraction to take time to reconnect and really listen to one another feels good
  • Puppy smiles – our sweet 12 year old puppy is getting on in years and she loves the beach just as much as we do
  • Sunsets and sunrises
  • Lots of steps along the beach means we’ve earned our donut quota without guilt
  • Laying on the beach and watching the stars – making wishes on shooting stars while talking about life has got to be a top moment in my life
  • The USA is MADE for road tripping – complete with rest stops and clean free bathrooms – it’s just an invitation to explore this amazing country we live in
  • Taking time to breathe, breathe, breathe

As Miss Moe plans to embark on her own journey in a few short years we plan to camp across the United States for several months. So, we are also using this time to test our must-haves so we don’t buy too much or too little when it’s time to plan, budget, and go. We are looking to outfit a rig (Toyota 4Runner is Mr. Moe’s current choice) for our housing/bed (we haven’t procured yet as we are a one car family until Miss Moe is licensed). And, after we saw a couple of collapsed tents in our campground when a passing storm came by – I think the car/bed will be the perfect housing to protect us. Since we have two extra campers (Daisy Mae Moe and Miss Moe we opted for a rudimentary cabin at the KOA this go around). What we learned from this trip, we need:

image1 (2)
Bodie Lighthouse at Dusk

 

  • Aeropress coffee gadget (because coffee is life)
  • Hot water kettle for the above
  • Double burner
  • Basic kitchen supplies
  • High quality cooler

It seems most of our haves this round focused largely on food and drink. One of our most expensive expenditures is food and that will be no different when we’re on the open road. We care a lot about our health too – so going out to eat all the days/meals will not work for our wallets or belt lines. Some delicious options we used this time:

  • Halos – they taste great are fresh and healthy
  • Muesli with a high protein yogurt
  • Sandwiches
  • Hummus
  • Wine and beer – we enjoyed these on the campsite after we bought them from the grocery store to avoid the exorbitant prices of enjoying the beverages during dinner at a restaurant

Early dinners work the best for us because we can get better deals, don’t have to wait through the crowds, and have a lot of activity still planned after dinner. Americans eat their biggest meal at night – which means we eat and immediately fuel up…. to sleep? We enjoy a meal in the five o’clock hour and don’t snack much in the evening. This time we went out for all dinners (only two – it was a short trip). The coffee shop was expensive too, but this is something we’ll be able to avoid going forward with the aeropress coffee gadget.

Happy Camping,
~Mrs. Moe

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