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Category: Entertaining Kids at Camp

OUR DIAMOND MINING EXPERIENCE – Crater of Diamonds, Arkansas

March 1, 2012 by · 3 Comments 

OUR DIAMOND MINING EXPERIENCE – Crater of Diamonds, Arkansas

You have probably read or heard about the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro, Arkansas. Stories abound about great diamond finds.  These stories have a tendency to make one think that there is a volcanic crater filled with shiny bean size diamonds just waiting for visitors to pick them up and keep with little or no effort. The truth is diamond searching is a difficult and dirty adventure.  The odds of finding a significant diamond are perhaps about as good as hitting the Million Dollar Jackpot on a Las Vegas casino slot machine.  Still, some visitors do make significant gem finds. But – despite all of the above, it is fun.  We met some great people while digging in the mud.  Folks from all over the country were out exploring our true national treasures of openness and freedom.  Many families with children were present as well as their pets.  Oscar went with us but soon became tired climbing the furrows and wanted to be carried. Plowed trenches in the search field Nancy... [Read more...]

Spring is coming…

February 13, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Spring is coming…

This week-end I caught my husband counting the weeks on his iPhone.    I was wondering what he was doing and then I realized he was counting the number of weeks before we can go up to our RV at the campground.   Total is fourteen weeks.   Fourteen weeks before we can drive to our RV and open it up for the season. Let me tell you that the weeks are not passing by fast enough according to the kids.   My four years old keep asking when we will go and remind us that we need to bring her pink blanket with us when we do.   She recently told us that we should not forget our plastic containers with the clothes when we go. Too funny!  You can sense her passion for camping and fishing as well. So slowly we are wrapping up our homeschool.   The kids still have about eleven weeks to complete their mathematics.   My oldest as finished his English writing curriculum.   English grammar is almost completed as well.   Bottom line we are doing good even though the French lessons won’t... [Read more...]

GO TO A HAMFEST – A RV or Camper’s Goldmine Awaits.

February 10, 2012 by · 9 Comments 

GO TO A HAMFEST – A RV or Camper’s Goldmine Awaits.

Lot’s of campers and RV’ers, are HAMS!  No, I’m not talking about the ones that like acting as if they were in a play or movie.  I’m not making a derogatory reference to those that have a tendency to overeat, either.  I’m talking about a different kind of HAM.  This kind of HAM can actually be anyone of any size and their ages may range from middle school to the most senior of Senior Citizens. The thumbnail picture to the left is a joke to get your attention – these Hams have little to do with pigs unless it is enjoying sausage links at breakfast. The HAM I am referring to is formally known as a Licensed Amateur Radio Operator.  Hams must pass a test to show their knowledge of radio communications and operating rules, and as a result have been issued a license by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to operate radio transmitters and possibly communicate with other “Hams” all over the world. Rows of small parts boxes await buyer inspection. NO, IT IS NOT CITIZEN... [Read more...]

Waiting for Winter…

January 18, 2012 by · 7 Comments 

Waiting for Winter…

As I write this we are awaiting our first “real” snowfall of the winter. It is January 12th and, as a snow lover, especially in December, January and February (not so much in March and April!), it has been a long wait. Today, however, we are predicted to receive a good six inches of the fluffy white stuff! Finally! Though I love to camp in our little RV because of how close it brings one to the great outdoors, my enjoyment of nature is not limited to the summer months.  There are so many ways to play and have fun in the winter that, if we let it, it can take us right back to childhood. I am writing to give those of you who, like me, are receiving your first good snow of the year, some ideas for what to do while waiting to back the RV out of the garage and get it ready to go! (Trust me, I know who you are! I am one of you!) Terry skiing (diagonal stride) Cross country skiing is one of the best ways to enjoy the snow. But within that concept, there are essentially two separate and completely... [Read more...]

THE LOST KEY (From the archives of the “Fiero Fiction Series”)

October 21, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

THE LOST KEY (From the archives of the “Fiero Fiction Series”)

The Lost Key is one of twenty stories I wrote back in the late 90’s. Many of these stories were published as part of the Fiero Fiction Series. They appeared in both the Pontiac Fiero Connection magazine and the Fiero Owner, a magazine published quarterly by the Fiero Owner’s Association of America. My affection for the little 2-seat, mid engine, composite body car that was only built from 1984 to 1988 still continues – but I am now down to three cars (I once owned seven). I share this story to readers of my Woodall’s Family Camping blog simply because I consider it “Fun”. You see, camping and sitting around the campfire without stories is like forgetting the marshmallows. In this story, Jimmy Moore is typical of anyone opening the lost ark contained within the center console and floor hugging seats in any Fiero. What he finds, and what he does, could easily happen to any of us. Like other stories in the Fiero Fiction Series, this one is based on a true story –... [Read more...]

Why My RV of Choice is Not an RV

September 22, 2011 by · 9 Comments 

Why My RV of Choice is Not an RV

The Revelations & Denials of a Happy Tent Camper… With an entire week devoted to our bloggers’ “RVs of Choice” I felt the need to represent tent campers just like me across North America, who faithfully read the Woodall’s Camping Blog enjoying posts about camp-cooking, unique things to do, and tips for not killing your kids on road trips.  See, there is a misnomer amongst RVers that tent campers are in a deeply jealous state of their luxurious RV accommodations, while in fact that often isn’t the case at all. (The truth is, is tent campers are only a little jealous, and slightly more so during winter months.) Our littlest camper in 2011 RVers and tent campers are cut out of the same cloth. In fact, how many of you RVers enjoyed tent camping for years before finally deciding that even the air mattress on the ground isn’t going to provide your grown-up bones with enough comfort to continue on in a tent?  At Woodall’s we enjoy reading the annual reader survey... [Read more...]

Consider The Lodge Cast Iron Biscuit Pan!

August 27, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

We have a vast collection of cast iron cookware. We find it priceless for campground cookery. We have multiple Dutch ovens, an array of skillets, basic griddles, and a  biscuit pan. I have purchased many of these items at thrift stores and garage sales over the years. Last year, right before we left for our family camping trip to Yellowstone National Park, I found a Lodge cast iron biscuit pan at the thrift store. I think I paid about $3 for it. While we were camping at the Madison Campground in Yellowstone, I spontaneously decided to use the pan for some mini pizzas. I had some Pillsbury biscuit dough that I separated into layers and placed in the greased pan. I then added some tomato sauce and cheese and placed the pan on the grill rack over a moderate campfire. I don’t recall how long they cooked, but I do remember that they were fabulous–smokey with a nicely browned bottom. My children loved them and they were a wonderfully simple snack  food to serve around the campfire... [Read more...]

MURBLES – Are you game?

July 4, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

MURBLES – Are you game?

MURBLES – Recreational Outdoor Game http://murblegame.com/ On Canada Day, we went out into a field near our RV and proceeded to learn and play a new game that I had received for a review. The game is named MURBLES, and can be learned in a matter of minutes and played almost anywhere you want. We found it was a great way to spend time with the kids while we were at our campsite. And the best part is that I can bring it home for them to play in our backyard… All you need to play this game is a willingness to have fun! No other skills are necessary. My first experience with MURBLES was when I had to pick the colors for our balls. I was able to pick the colors for the two sets, the point ball, as well as our bag. With twenty colors to pick from you can get overwhelmed easily. Our bag is green, with sets of red and yellow and our point ball is dark blue. If I had to redo the selection, I would avoid taking a darker color for the point ball as it can be tricky to... [Read more...]

Balancing Teens and Nature Thanks To KOA

June 26, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

Last summer, we had the opportunity to rediscover the Kampgrounds of America, also known as KOAs. We were visiting Yellowstone National Park and during the first part of our stay, we camped at Madison Campground right in the park. Madison was lovely, but it lacked amenities such as water and electrical hookups. And, there weren’t even showers at the campground itself.  This, of course, didn’t go over too well with our teenage daughter. After a few days, the steam was starting to emerge. It was definitely time to shift gears. So,  when we decided to change our itinerary and stay a little longer, we opted to stay at the lovely Yellowstone Park KOA. We hadn’t stayed at a KOA in years, but this one is organized, immaculate, and beautifully maintained. The bathrooms were clean and the little shop offered lots of conveniences such as milk, bread, ice, and even homemade fudge. There was a playground and  a coffee stand. A little café served pancakes in the morning.  There was WiFi... [Read more...]

Getting the Camper Ready!

June 22, 2011 by · 6 Comments 

Getting the Camper Ready!

Those of you who have been following this blog for awhile heard from me last year about the excitement that occurs when our camper comes “home” for the summer from its winter storage place up on some land we have in northern Wisconsin. It’s not that I like to have an 18 foot trailer parked in our driveway preventing any access into or out of our garage. It is what the camper being “home” represents in terms of my time. Every time I look out our kitchen or sunroom window and see it sitting there, waiting, I am reminded of the wonderful times we have had traveling. It is like being on vacation without ever leaving home. Well, in a few weeks the camper will be coming home; albeit a bit later this year due to our oldest daughter’s wedding which will occur June 24th. We will need the extra parking spaces for visiting and overnight guests so the camper will have to stay “up north” a little longer this year. But we have wonderful adventures planned for it in July. To that end,... [Read more...]

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