Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Payson Lakes Camping

After only spending a few nights back home from our last trip, we decided to go camping for the weekend!  It was an epic couple of days, especially since we were joined by three other families in our neighborhood.  There was 7 kids total, ranging ages 2-7.  I love having friends with kids who are in the same stage of life as us.  It makes taking adventures like this one far more fun!  Our destination was Payson Lakes, about an hour south of where we live in the Rocky Mountains.  We camped at 8,000 feet, which made for gorgeous views the entire drive up!

Side note: I broke my nifty fifty lens on our last trip and was completely devastated.  Instead of simply replacing it, I decided to upgrade.  And my friend Erin was sweet enough to sell me her 50mm 1.4!!!  I was ecstatic about it!  It arrived in the mail literally a couple hours before we left for camping.  I will say that it took a bit to get used to the new lens.  I had a harder time nailing the focus and took waaay too many blurry photos, but I'm loving the new lens!  If you have yet to buy a fifty, skip the cheap option(the 1.8) and go for the 1.4!!!



This was our first camping trip of 2016, so I was lightly nervous about how we would all fit in our three person backpacking tent now that Finn is much much bigger.  We brought our queen sized air mattress for the first time (it felt like I was glamping), which just barely fit inside.  It was snuggly & cozy for sure.  I think that we can actually keep using it this summer, but by next year, it will surely be time to upgrade to a four person!



Our days were filled, with no real agenda, yet the time passed quickly.  There was kayaking & fishing.  Campfires & s'mores.  Little walks for flower picking & rock finding.  Finn was quite the explorer, never content to just stay still.  He would often wander wherever his little heart desired, practically gleeful to be taking off into the forest!  Both my boys just love camping, which makes all the effort that goes into each trip so so worth it!



Usually Conor does all the camping preparation, but he had a big work week, so it all fell on me!  I probably stressed far more than I should have.  Made too many lists.  And I went a little crazy on the food & drinks, but... I nailed it!  We were in charge of dinner one night, so we made foil packs of salmon topped with butter, white pepper, dill, & lemon slices.  We just tossed it on the campfire, and bam! best meal camping ever!!!  I also purchased a few surprises, like cold brew nitrogen coffee for Conor (how very hipster of me!) & cinnamon rolls to be heated on the campfire one morning.  It was all so finger lickin' good!  And let us not forget the booze...  We filled two growlers of our latest batch of hard cider (grapefruit for the summer season) as well as some wine & beers for good measure.



Many of the best moments were those just surrounded by friends; friends that have become our family here in Utah.  There were no cell phones, just genuine face to face time with some wonderful people.  I loved being outside constantly and getting in some true moments of relaxation.  The camping hammock is my happy place!  Not quite so peaceful when the boys are crawling all over it, but still relaxing nonetheless!
  

After two nights we were all filthy dirty.  Everything was covered in pollen (like a crazy ridiculous amount of pollen).  And the booze had nearly run dry!  Liam was devastated to be leaving.  I swear he could camp for an entire week and still never want it to end.  So I'm sure this is only the first trip of one incredibly busy camping season.  I'm already scoping out spots for future weekends!


 And a huge thank you to Conor for making these trips run so flawlessly.  He always sets up & takes down camp (not where my skills lie) and just keeps us all alive in general.  He is my mountain man.  He encourages us to adventure with the boys and always keeps the stress levels down.  I'm proud to be a family that camps with little ones!  I know that we are creating beautiful childhoods for our boys.  I so hope they look back with fond fond memories!

21 comments :

  1. Such great photos! The scenery is just breathtaking!

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  2. I'm seriously impressed that you had salmon and cinnamon rolls! I'm not a camper so I thought it was hot dogs and canned food when you go camping! You make camping look so fun & beautiful! Oh and how was the nitrogen cold brew? Christian and I were just talking about trying that!

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  3. You got some beautiful photos. I love the ones of the boys and holy moly the ones by the lake. Looks like a great time. I would have stressed too but you definitely came out on top. :)

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  4. That looks like so much fun! I am always so jealous of the gorgeous scenery you guys have up there!

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  5. Conor reminds me so much of Jim. Which is awesome. I'm glad he keeps you alive :p

    I'm definitely wanting to upgrade to the 1.4. Maybe for my birthday??? We'll see!

    Would I sound like a creeper if I said that I missed you on social media while you were gone? I totally noticed you were sans cell phone!

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  6. Ooh, adding that lens to my wishlist ASAP. This is the most beautiful camping trip I've ever seen. How was the nitro coffee? I need to find some!! Unplugged, family-friend time is so refreshing. :)

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  7. <3<3<3 It looks like it was an absolutely wonderful time!

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  8. I'm always super impressed with families who camp with young kids, it seems like it would be such a production. We are going to do some backyard camping with the girls this summer, maybe next year after we move we'll do the real thing!

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  9. What a gorgeous place to go camping! I'm seriously so impressed with you for camping with little kids but it seems so effortless with your sweet boys. They truly are "mountain boys" and seem to just love being outdoors in general. I guarantee you are making childhood memories that they will look fondly upon later in life!

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  10. When the booze is out = trip over. ;) These are the best family memories you are making! I already told Nick we are going camping next summer and I can't wait!

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  11. You make camping look epic. Like so much so that I might just crash in that 4 person tent...

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  12. LOVE all these photos. Girl you make me want to go camping... can we just come camping with you?! Because we have no idea what we're doing. Also so exciting about your 50mm... if I ever get another 50mm it'll be the 1.2. I LOVE the 50mm length, I'm tempted to get a 35... like really tempted and I think it'll be my next lens but I love the length of my 50 so much that I'm torn...

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    1. I love the 50 length too! Although I do also use a 24 for indoors sometimes. I swear I need a 35 just to get me through the winter months. Why does photography have to be such an expensive hobby?!

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  13. Woohoo for the new lens! I am obsessed with the photo of Liam in the water! You make camping look so fun, and that's coming from an "indoor girl"!

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  14. I really want to take Myles camping but I am so nervous. I guess I just need to do it!! Beautiful pictures as always! What camera do those lenses fit on?

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  15. Camping for the win! I love that your neighbors joined in. I’m convinced you live in the best neighborhood in all of the land. Great pictures. It sounds like the perfect camping trip with a good mix of play and relax.

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  16. As always, great pictures!! I bet your boys just love camping and even better with friends!

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  17. So incredible! You make camping look good! I love the family photo of you guys so much too. This is just such a picture perfect family trip. I'm not sure I'd be quite as brave as you, but the fun food, a little alcohol and lots of family time seems like I could maybe make it work!

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  18. You make it look and sound so effortless. I'd be a freaking basket case from start to finish.
    So sweet Erin sold her fifty, and perfect timing for it to arrive. I also find it so hard to believe you took a single blurry photo. Your captures are always so breathtakingly beautiful!
    Teach me your camping ways. Scott would thank you a million times over.

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  19. and just keeps us alive, haha. That's what I count on Chris for as well. I always love your camping adventures!

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  20. I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this post. You guys are such cool fun parents. I would love to go camping every weekend, but I also feel like is SO MUCH WORK and isn't nearly as fun and relaxing as it used to be. I'm constantly freaked out about the kids wandering off and being abducted or drowning. There's no way all 4 of us could sleep together on one mattress! I mean, we could do it, but I'd need to really chill out and drink a LOT. ;) And yay to the new lens! The photos are absolute PERFECTION! I have that lens and absolutely love it! It's actually the only one I have that I love.

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