Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

Last time


Katie is sleeping off her camping hangover. Both of us always come home from a camping trip feeling a bit hungover, head stuffed with sights and smells, sleep deprived.

A little damp.

Don't laugh at me.  Mama's hair looked like this too.

Don’t laugh at me. Mama’s hair looked like this too.

Since she’s unavailable I guess it’s up to me to tell you about our latest camping adventure. It was less adventure this time, given we just went up the road to our local state park. Still, our site was secluded and the park was mostly empty the first night, so we could imagine it was just us out there in the woods. We even heard coyotes yipping far away.

We were glad they weren’t any closer.

Just like camping in the deep woods.  Sort of.

Just like camping in the deep woods. Sort of.

High above our tent was a tree filled with wild grapevines heavy with ripe fruit attracting lots of robins. We enjoyed watching them fly up there to eat. We also had a tree right next to the tent that was a squirrel jungle gym. It was full of the little guys running up and down the trunk, then out onto the branches to eat acorns. Lots of acorns also fell (or were thrown) on us and the tent.

Looks like a good lunch up there!

Looks like a good lunch up there!

Katie and I were both entertained. It doesn’t take a lot to make us happy.

Down at the park headquarters someone planted a whole lot of sunflowers. Katie and I noticed them as we drove in, so we went back there the next morning to see them up close.



They were simply amazing. Some of them had been eaten by deer down to little sunflower stumps. But hundreds had grown to maturity, their heads following the sun. I particularly liked the way the sun looked shining through their petals. The shapes were beautiful, even from behind.

Following the sun.

Following the sun.

And during our campout we had visitors too! Peep and her mom Wendy stopped by for a walk. We always have a good time when we get together.

Hey Katie!  Does your mom always take this many pictures?

Hey Katie! Does your mom always take this many pictures?

It’s obvious the chairs were meant for the girls to enjoy. So they did.

Later in the day we wandered down to the beach to see if there would be a sunset. We got there about an hour before official sunset, but the light was already pretty.

Looks like fall visited this tree early.

Looks like fall visited this tree early.

I took a ton of photos as the sun dropped. The clouds turned a lovely pink and were reflected in the still water.

Reflections of a beautiful day at the park.

Reflections of a beautiful day at the park.

And while that was happening, further to the west the sky was turning gold.

The sun leaves a bit of gold behind.

The sun leaves a bit of gold behind.

It was hard to choose what to shoot. So I quickly took pictures of it all. Including, of course, my Katie-girl who waited patiently for me to finish.

This light is perfect for a princess mama!

Ready for my closeup mama!

She only huffed at me a little bit and then only because I hadn’t spent enough time focusing on her in the golden light. A princess knows when the light is perfect and will show off her best features.

Once it began to get dark Katie and I headed back up the hill to the car. I was loading her into her crate in the back, when glancing over my shoulder I saw this:



Obviously Katie had to be patient again. Even she was in awe of the moon, and she didn’t huff once.

I think this was our last camping adventure for the season. Time to put the camping gear away for awhile. We’ll have to be satisfied with dreaming about next year’s adventures.

Katie says she can’t wait.

What do you mean the season's over mama??

What do you mean the season’s over mama??

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

28 thoughts on “Last time

  1. Beautiful! Michigan? When we moved a few degrees of latitude south, I had no idea how much I would miss the twilight. Thank you for sharing. Fall camping is the best. ❤ Mira


  2. No more camping this year? Maybe we could cancel winter?


  3. Oh, wow, these are lovely! Sad to have to stow away the camping gear for the winter, but truth be told, I’m kind of looking forward to fall! Does Katie smell like “eau de wet dog” or does she still smell like a princess in that first shot?!?


  4. Gorgeous sunset photos. I love the way sunflowers turn to face the sun. I’ve always wanted to plant some in our yard.

    We’re going to try to squeeze one more trip up to the U.P. for leaf peeping before we pack it up for the winter (but then we’re not in a tent).


    • One year we had the back yard redone and the grater left a big scraped place in the middle of the yard. Before we got around to planting grass seed the birds planted sunflower seeds, from our bird feeder. We had this huge triangle of sunflowers late that summer…it was marvelous and we’ve never managed to recreate it since. I should try next year.

      We LOVE the UP for leaf peeping. I lived up in Hancock for 6 years, my husband lived in Houghton for 2 years (not at the same time, we didn’t meet there). I miss it sometimes. But not in January. Or February. Or March for that matter! Have a wonderful trip up there!


  5. The hangovers you experienced is certainly the best type you can get! And just for the record Dawn, here in the Southern hemisphere I am getting my camping gear out! But winters have there advantageous, the Lion, Rhinoceros, Elephant and other animals featured in my latest post was taken in July last year, being the middle of our winter


    • Wow. I don’t know if I could deal with having Lions or Rhinoceros or Elephants around when I was camping in a tent! I always feel guilty when our spring comes, because I know friends of mine down in your part of the world are facing winter. But now we’re facing winter and you’ll get spring…so I guess it’s all equal in the end.

      Thanks for stopping by my blog!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. And by the way awesome phptos


  7. I enjoyed your camping trip as much as you did – possibly more! 😀


  8. These are just gorgeous pics of your camping trip. Love sunflowers and sunsets, just gorgeous and of course Katie xxxx


  9. I wish winter never came for you in the midwest!! I like how when you camp, it appears you really are minimalist. So many times, I see people camping and when they set up camp, it looks like their car or vehicle just threw up a bunch of stuff all over the place! 🙂

    Your pictures are beautiful as always. You’re right – the sunflowers are beautiful, even from behind. And I laughed when I read the part about the squirrels throwing acorns at you. I wouldn’t put it past them!


  10. Such a wonderful adventure, love the sunflowers.


  11. I love the sleepy head look on Katie!!!


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