Everything had to be just right. The zero gravity chairs were set-up to allow for optimal granddaughter cuddling. The fire pit was secured and the s’mores kit was organized. The trailer was cleaned (and then cleaned again) and stocked with kid-friendly snacks. Anticipation was coursing through me as we waited for Juliet to arrive. The minutes on my watch seemed to slow, as I repeatedly checked the time again and again.
Finally, I heard a soft little knock on the trailer door. Juliet tumbled inside and immediately ran to give her “Pepaw” (my husband) a big hug. She then proceeded to explore every inch of the trailer—and I mean every inch. We thought we had done a good job toddler-proofing but Juliet quickly proved us wrong. I still laugh thinking about my husband following Juliet around the RV, placing electrical tape over everything she could possibly touch. Needless to say, the electrical panel had tape all around the edges and a big X right through the middle.
Electrical tape aside, one of the highlights of the trip was taking Juliet on her first long hike. We bundled her up into her little teddy bear coat and carried her down to Cedar Falls. Every step we took was invigorating and filled me with so much gratitude. I felt thankful to be able to show Juliet so much nature at such a young age. Her little face lit up with delight as she saw the waterfall cascading down into the pool below. I, on the other hand, probably lost 10 pounds carrying her all the way back to the campsite, but it was worth it to see her so happy. (And I have since ordered a baby backpack for these types of hikes.)