The Trip That Will Never Be…

Well, this week is the week we were supposed to be heading out on our second mini-vacation of the summer. We were going to King’s Canyon in Sequoia National Park. My family has been going there every summer since my mom was a kid! I admit, I haven’t gone every year…not even close! But I can’t wait to take the kids because going there when I was a kid brings back some of my favorite memories.

Like singing around the campfire at night. Playing with my cousins all day (hide and seek, bike rides, hiking, badminton, chase…), running from campsite to campsite, making smores, and going “bear hunting”. Bear hunting was basically all of us kids piling into the bed of an uncle’s pick up truck and winding through the dirt trails in the dark. And yes, we did see lots of wildlife, but I don’t remember ever seeing any bears. We have seen bears there before, but never on an official “bear hunt”.

Lots of fun, and I’m kinda bummed that we aren’t going. But after our first trip with all three kids (lovingly coined the trip from hell), we opted out of going. Oh, did I mention it’s an 8 hour car trip…ONE WAY?!

Maybe when the twins are Tater’s age we will try it. Until then, we ain’t goin’ nowhere!

Looking for the fastest, easiest side dish that you’ll ever make? Did I mention once you make it, people will demand to bring it to every dinner and potluck you go to in the future? Well then, check out my recipe for jalapeno creamed corn! You will never need another side dish recipe again!!

And so it goes…


  1. Allyson & Jere says:
    Bummer about the vacay. But I completely understand your choice not to go.

    As far as the jalapeno creamed corn...I just can't do jalapeno. My face would melt off in huge, unattractive chunks. So, I'll just trust you.
  2. Nina @ Momma Go Round says:
    Bummer! I feel ya though...we are headed to Montana this week for my cousin's wedding and I'm not too thrilled about traveling with LJ. He's a really good kid, but he loves his home/bed/toys...

    Don't blame ya. Maybe do a backyard campout or something fun!
  3. You made a great decision!! Enjoy not going crazy and hanging at home!
  4. Pumpkin and Piglet says:
    Sounds like it would be a lot of fun but after your last holiday I can really understand not going!
  5. I would wait until Tater can drive :)
  6. Maybe next summer you guys can all go and enjoy the fun :D
  7. Sorry you're having to miss out on the fun...but it sounds like a pretty sane decision to me! Traveling with kids can really be a nightmare. We once drove to Dallas - 15 hours one way! Never again.
  8. blueviolet says:
    I think you're wise to put this one off...that's a LONG car ride!
  9. Kristin @ Peace, Love and Muesli says:
    Little girls learning to walk and a campfire is a recipe for hysterical parents. There will be lots of years to enjoy vacations.
  10. Belle's Butterfly says:
    That really stinks that you aren't going on your vaca. But I totally get why you decided not to go. Could you do something around town? The zoo or museums or something. Maybe you will be able to go next year. Have fun relaxing at home.
  11. NanaDiana says:
    LOL, Natalie- I understand! I get it! I've been there-done that! Sometimes the BEST vacation is NO vacation! lol Things will smooth out as the kids get older-I promise! 3 of my little monkeys got back from vacation yesterday. If you get a chance stop by my blog and see the wonderful present they bought me. It will make you smile-I promise~ Hugs to you-Diana
  12. Girlfriend! I do NOT blame you! That travel time sounds brutal, and you would be going insane for sure! That recipe sounds awesome!!
  13. My Momma Drama says:
    Sounds like a nice family tradition. I used to camp all the time when I was younger with my parents, but we've never been with the kids.

    I don't think an 8 hour ride with young ones is the best idea... especially since it didn't go so well the last time! Hope you can find something fun to do closer to home :)
  14. Wouldn't it just be a riot if you and I were neighbors and didn't even know it. Gotta love the big trees.
  15. Maybe you can have a backyard bear hunt of your own. Or! I can just come over and we can eat s'mores. Whichever.
  16. WTH am I Doing? says:
    Traveling with little kids never seems like a "vacation" to me. I'm all crabby and exhausted by the time we get home. I totally understand where you're coming from with this one!
  17. cooperl788 says:
    It is a big bummer about opting out of the vacation, but there will be plenty of years to go in the future when everyone can appreciate it a bit more. We're opting out of our Thanksgiving and Christmas trips this year because of our most recent trip from hell (6.5 hour plane ride across the country with no end of screaming). Maybe have a camping staycation?
  18. Funky Mama Bird says:
    I don't blame you for opting out. I'm both looking forward to and dreading next week when Gunne and I head to the beach to visit my parents. At least there's only one of him!
  19. Jhen.Stark says:
    8 hrs... my goodness, (yeah, NO WAY!) I'm sure if you did go, that would be 16 hrs, counting all the stops you'll need to take with potty and diaper changes, plus the need to, well GET OUT OF THE CAR! I did what should have been a 1.5 day trip but turned into 3 days with a 3 week old, because of all the feeding and pooping, and the need to get out and stretch, but I only had ONE!
  20. omg, this is my agony right now. I can't go anywhere with my 1 year old because she's a homebody. She hates car rides, shopping malls, her car seat, and her stroller. so miserable. I completely understand what you're going through.
  21. you are so
  22. The Urban Cowboy says:
    I would prefer backyard camping to driving that long with little one's any day.
  23. Sharlene T. says:
    Smart lady... very. smart. lady! Enjoy the quiet of your own home and just do little side trips to whatever your town offers to outsiders! Love the Jalapeno corn recipe!

    Twitter: SolarChief
  24. MommaKiss says:
    8 hours one way? um.
  25. We also postposed a trip that we were to go on this week. Not to worry... you will have many beautiful trips ahead.
  26. Aging Mommy says:
    I don't think somewhere like Kings Canyon is a good idea with the twins as young as they are and I think you are so right not to go this year - or even next. Wait until everyone is potty trained and able to really join in the fun and then you will be able to kick back a bit and enjoy it all too. But you're welcome in the meantime to join us on our bucket and spade beach vacations :-)
  27. Kings Canyon Natl Park is right around the corner from Fresno, where I grew up!

    Sounds so NICE!
    :) Sorry you have to miss it this year, I am sure the wait will be worth it!
  28. gringationcancun says:
    I agree you should wait, so that the whole family can really9 enjoy everything :)
  29. A long drive like that is NOT a fun vacation. I think it's smart to wait.

    Your recipe sounds really good! I love easy dishes.
  30. Joann Mannix says:
    Here's what I tell everybody I know having survived vacation for far too many years with small children: you never really get to have fun on vacation until children are around 5. After that, it's all fun and delight. Now that my girls are all teenagers, our vacations are such fun. Taking little ones out of their element makes misery for mom and dad.

    And that picture below of the creamed corn looks dee-licious. My girls are going to the store for me right now, (another great thing about teenagers) and I'm going to have them get me the ingredients.
  31. Aging Mommy says:
    I think you are absolutely right to cancel this trip. King's Canyon is not a great idea with such young children, I would definitely wait until everyone is potty trained and able to really enjoy things which will mean that you can kick back a bit and also enjoy it all.

    In the meantime you are more than welcome to join us on our bucket and spade vacation trips :-)
  32. The Empress says:
    I would stay home, too. Very easy to stay home...
  33. Smartest decision you've ever made. There's always next year... when the kids are a little older, all walking and potty trained and can appreciate it a little more.

    Sounds like an awesome family getaway!
  34. Natalie, you guys were so smart to just cut your losses at ONE ruined vacay and skip this one! If you had tried it and it sucked, you would have been extra bummed. The day will come, you will know when it's right, and it will be SO memorable, just like when you were a kid! Then you can relive it through their eyes...


  1. [...] make it next to impossible to travel with small children. It sucks that I have to miss our annual family camping trip to King’s Canyon. I’m double…no, wait triple, flipping you [...]