Our first destination on our summer series of trips was Caples Lake near Lake Tahoe for Meilani's first camping trip. Ericlee and his friend Doug started a tradition about 12 years ago of backpacking every summer. When we got married, the wives joined in and I experienced my first backpacking adventure. This year, Meilani (1 year) and Doug and Brenda's daughter, Liana, (11 months) joined us. We decided to take the easier route with little ones and bring our cars.
After celebrating her first birthday a week ago, we continued our celebration of firsts. Meilani had her first discovery of a tent. She loved being inside it with Mama and Daddy. The zippers and flaps provided great entertainment. She ran from one side to the other making fish lips and declaring, "Oooh. Oooh. OOh," pointing outside at the trees or up at the rain fly.
Meilani also experienced her first camp fire. Luckily, she wasn't too interested in the fire. She was more interested in taking off the socks on her hands (Mama's makeshift mittens) and feeding Liana pine cones. Our first night was Brrr-cold. The temperature was down in the 40s. Something us Californians from the Valley were not prepared for - but we survived. This was a great excuse to cuzzle together in our sleeping bags. Of course, Meilani woke up about five times during the night. (We opted to sleep in the car on the second night.)
The highlight of most adventures with Doug and Brenda is hiking. We took the girls on a hike up to Caples Lake - about 5 miles round trip. Liana and Meilani rode in their matching backpacks on their daddys' backs. Meilani enjoyed all the B-words on the trail like Bumblebee, Butterfly, Breeze, Bubbling Brook, Backpack, Bear (just kidding, we didn't see any bears) and her favorite activity, BOUNCING.