We were supposed to go camping a month ago but it was cold (and forecast to get colder) and very windy, so we decided that camping with 4 small children (we were going with friends, we haven’t had 2 extra children without telling you!) in near freezing temperatures would not be sensible. Even if the girls were keen to camp out with their friends.
We did want to get out of Houston for a while, though, so we headed to where we were due to camp at Lake Livingston State Park for the afternoon and a barbecue instead.
Lake Livingston is the largest reservoir in Texas, at 84,800 acres(!) and was made in the 1960s to supply water to Houston and the surrounding areas. There is a state park surrounding the lake, with a camp ground where we should have camped for the night. We found a spot on the lake edge, near the children’s playground, which had a fire pit with a BBQ grid, as our base.
The children played and did a nature treasure hunt whilst we provided food and got the fire going.
Whilst the sun was out, it was quite pleasant. The wind whipped up some waves which lapped the shore, making us feel like we were on a British beach on one of those Spring days where it looks like it might be warm and sunny, but actually the wind makes it feel much closer to freezing that it really is! It was lovely being in the peace and quiet though and the girls were all happy playing and collecting wood.
We watched the sun go down. It was a beautiful sunset but so fast I didn’t even get a proper picture! But now it was cold. Very cold. So we got the BBQ going and all sat round it being thoroughly smoked whilst we ate burgers, grilled mushrooms and bread. The girls danced around the grown ups who were all sat around the fire pit and sang to us. Unfortunately it was the chorus of one song which they all like: We are Never Ever Getting Back Together by Taylor Swift! They do know lots of better music but this one seems to be stuck in their brains on permanent repeat at the moment and only that title line, which gets a bit wearing, to say the least!
To stop the singing we offered them toasted marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate to make smores. That at least filled their mouths momentarily! Then it got too cold for the girls, even in coats, hats, gloves and scarves, so they all tucked up in sleeping bags around the fire (obviously at a safe distance from the fire…) until it got too cold for us grown ups.
The stars out there are amazing as it is away from street lights and big cities. But even that couldn’t keep us out in the cold for any longer, so we quickly packed up and headed home. When it gets a little warmer, but before it gets too warm, we’ll head back and do the actual camping this time!