OhBoy, OhBoy, OhBoy ... our little flock of MaryJanesFarm sister-hens have gone utterly nutz over glamping. No, really! In the last month four of us have bought vintage camping trailers ... one just yesterday! I bought mine last winter and spent much of the season playing house in my new "cabin in a can". Now, my farmgirl pals are crunching to get their campers road-ready. We're a little late to get started, but we're planning on camping as far into autumn as the weather will allow.
So, here we are in the middle of glamping season. But, all my sister-hens are close to being ready. Something sparked the glamper bug in us .. and then, one by one, we each had to have our own little glamper. And now, do - we - have - plans! We have a lot to get ready. Three of my farmgirls are remodeling their glampers -- they're working feverishly to get the trailers road worthy, fitted with all the neccessities and glamorized! Next weekend, three of us are going on a dry run, so to speak. We want to familiarize ourselves with our campers & such before we stray too far from home. The end goal: getting away from it all and enjoying some R & R in the great outdoors. But, first ...
Yea, a lot of the prep-work and details. Having a glamper is like buying a mini house. There is actually quite a bit to getting everything ready so that you can actually GO. I realize there are many who could pull things together a lot quicker, as well as simplify the to-do and needs lists, but that just isn't the glamping way. Its all in the details. Glamper gals are sentimental. They're lovers of home ... even when they're on the road. They love taking home with them. Glamping isn't just for us older hens either. Lots of young chicks love glamping too!
When I was a young lass with coffee colored hair, I loved roughing it and hiking. All I needed was a backpack and a sleeping bag ... maybe a tent. I carried all that I needed. When horses were added to my camping resume', it meant that my husband and I could go farther into the wilderness and stay longer. We took more food and more comforts. Combining my love of the outdoors with my lifelong love of horses was heavenly. More time passed, my interests deepened and grew wider just as my life did. Its not that I wanted fewer complications back when and now want I more "stuff". No. I think it is a matter of broadening my horizons and finding more ways to enjoy my love of camping. I also feel a stronger pull in that direction too. Honestly, I never got to go camping as often as I wanted to. Life got in the way. Job. Location. Etc. Etc. But, that was then. Now, I can go and I'm going to GO ... God willing. As it turns out, I won't be going alone!
Neither are a lot of women all over the country! Sometimes, our husbands don't share an interest in camping. Well, not camping like a girl. Its ok to pursue individual interests. My husband and I share interests, but he's not a camper. Camping makes no sense to him unless there is a rifle and a hunting license involved.
I'm so thankful that MaryJane and groups like Sisters On The Fly gave us a new vision of ourselves in the great outdoors. Now we can "camp like a girl" and make no apologies for decorating our glampers with vintage treasures ... lace & lariats, fishing rods & froofroo pillows, camp blankets & cabbage roses, crochet & croquet. Who says you can't take it with you ??!!
Ok, so, my farmgirl pals are fitting their campers at warp speed. All I have left to do is paint the outside. I dawdled because I couldn't decide what to paint on it. Mural or no? Vintage stripes or polka dots? I've run the gamut and finally decided to simplify the deal. Just paint the darn thing ... red around the bottom, white on top and add the sugar later. Sheesh. So, Jennie offered to help me paint and git 'r done! Then, all I have left to do is get a spare tire. Jennie's trailer (as some of you may remember) was purchased ready to roll.
Anita is about 3/4ths of the way done with her camper. Donna is about half-way there, and Michele took on a true 'handyman special'. She attacked her camper this morning by mucking it out ... filthy mattresses, bugs, dirt, rodent 'residue', years of crud. Now she can get down to doing the repair work. As a family project, her folks and her sisters & brothers built their log home. Michele knows her way around tools. She's going to "flip" that 1961 Shasta and its going to be an awesome extreme make-over.
Soon, we'll be ready to actually pull onto the highway together and caravan our way to a destination that any lover of pristine outdoor beauty would smile about. The meadow wildflowers, the creeks, the dancing aspen, the smell of a wet, wooded path ... Oh Yea, we can smell it now.
Yea, but, back to the details of getting ready. Coffee. Must Have. Vintage enamelware percolator: Check. Electric coffeemaker: Check. Coffee: Three flavors. Giant mug: Check. Mugs for guests: Of course.
And, for special occasions, I'm going to take some of my antique china and silver for dining.
Dining. Yea, not just eating. The setting as a whole along with an aesthetic "tablescape" ... that is the difference. My mother planted the idea of taking the time to set a pretty table. Then, years later, a movie in 1989 sealed it. I never recovered from a couple of scenes in Out Of Africa ... when they were camping on a safari and their table was properly set with china, crystal and silver. The contrast of refinement in such a beautifully wild place ... OHhhhh! So smitten with the whole movie was I that I even had an exact duplicate of one of Meryl Streep's outfits made: a wide collared linen blouse and a khaki, split riding skirt. Out Of Africa made me fall in love with glamor camping/glamping. But, it was a dormant daydream and nameless until recently.
Wine bottle opener: Check. Bedding: Check. Flashlight, lantern, decorative camper lights: Check. Decorative items for inside and out: Check. [Even better if the decorative goodies are functional!] Coolers, ice chests, emergency essentials: Check. My favorite pillow in an antique, lacey pillowcase: Absolutely Check.
Now, what to wear when we go out to eat while glamping. Thats right, we don't have to cook over a campfire every meal. There are lots of fun eateries along the way ... a nice winery, for example . If I was 26 instead of 56, wardrobe choices would be all kinds of fun. I looked good in anything at that age (and without anything if you don't mind me saying so ;o). But, that was then and this is now. Now is different. A lot different. Sensible shoes different. As much as I would like to look saucey cute ... like this little cowgirl ...
I'm here to confess that the view below is closer to the present truth ...
For me, dressing up is jeans, comfy shoes, a pretty blouse and great baubles - - love jewelry!
When I was young, I didn't have to make sure other things were taken care of before I left on "walkabout". I just packed my gear in my 1962 VW Bug and away I went. Now is different. Among other things, I have to come up with someone who will water my garden. Husband? No. Just, no. Something or several things would perish in my absence. He has too many things on his plate to slow down and water like I water.
My chickens. Not his chickens. He thinks cellophane wrap and egg cartons are perfectly sensible options in regards to chickens. But, he's willing to tend to them while I'm gone for a couple of days. I'll load up the big feeder & waterer and have him shut them up at night. Admission: I have seperation anxiety. Terrible. How I fret before I leave. I so enjoy the gone part, but getting gone is sometimes hard. Forget sleeping the night before I leave. Do you suffer too?
Cats & dogs. This is an easy detail for my Beloved to mess up, but less so now that it is summer. 'Mess' being the key word. Put 'em all outside and be sure there is water. Let them in at night. Food, piddle before bedtime. I'll take my old doggie, Dotty. She needs more attention, a heart pill - and she's a good traveller.
Now the fun part. The glamping menu. Good food is somehow all the more tasty when prepared outside and if you've also spent the better part of the day outside. Delicious and camp-easy are very do-able. My farmgirl pals, each and every one, are good cooks. It'll be great fun to see what everyone brings to share. One of the sweet treats that I'm going to make is in the current issue of MaryJanesFarm magazine. Raspberry Lemon Crisp -- the recipe is at the very back of the issue. Evening dessert and just as good in the morning with coffee or a glass of milk. My two favorite fruits together -- gotta be great.
I've accumulated many decorative goodies for my glamper and for dressing up the campsite. I'll share photos with you later. One of the items is of special importance. The American flag. It isn't really just for 'decoration'. When Americans decorate their homes with the Stars & Stripes ... or their motorcycle, their camp site, their car, their jean jacket, their bicycle, their RV, etc etc ... they're telling the rest of the world that they're proud of our country and that they think a symbol of freedom is truly beautiful. And, most importantly, they're grateful.
I'm so thankful to the men & women who are "camped" in far off nations, in danger's way so that we, here at home, can camp for fun and in safety. I feel pangs of guilt enjoying myself while they put their lives on the line and their family life on hold. But, they say that is part of what they're fighting for - the American way of life. So, I pray that someday they/we might all camp in safety, with our favorite friends & family ... and that the weapons of war will finally and forever rust in peace. I hope, I pray and I believe.