Camping: Indian Boundary Campground in Cherokee National Forest

Ahhh….the great outdoors. There’s nothing like it.

Once upon a time I was fearless. I was spontaneous, I lived in the moment. I acted on a whim, and it was amazing. Then life got in the way. Suddenly I was faced with RESPONSIBILITIES and BILLS and a JOB and DOGS. And I had to pay for all my own stuff. Not quite as much fun being spontaneous on your own dime. So, as happens to so many people, I stopped just “doing” and started being boring.

I hate planning. I hate checklists. I hate schedules. The one exception is with vacations – I love planning those. To a point. Mostly I just love deciding where to go and then the buildup of excitement until the day you actually leave.

Anyway. More and more, I find myself getting caught in the trap of thinking of all the reasons why I shouldn’t just do something. Booooring. (And yeah, probably somewhat practical. But still boring.)

Which is why this past Thursday night was so exciting. Jimmie and I decided to go camping for the weekend.

A whole 12 hours before.

A quick check of the weather, a desperate text message to a friend about dog duty, and several Pinterest recipes later, we were ready.

Friday morning, we packed up our brand new tent and all our gear. I was in charge of food and Luka’s stuff. We’d decided to take him since otherwise he’d have spent the whole weekend in his crate….and we hated that idea. We hit the road about 1:00, head to Walmart for food and beer. Unfortunately we hadn’t factored in the fact that it was tax-free weekend, so Walmart was nuts….poor Jimmie went in for supplies, and Luka and I took pictures. Eventually though, we got on the road and made it up to Tellico Plains and the Indian Boundary Campground (in the Cherokee National Forest).

Luka, excited for his first camping trip.

Luka, excited for his first camping trip.

Waiting on Jimmie at Walmart

Waiting on Jimmie at Walmart

IndianBoundaryCampground

As luck would have it, there were a few cancellations at the campground, so we snagged a spot and made camp. We spent the rest of Friday getting settled in and eating hot dogs…the staple of any camping trip!

Saturday we headed down to the river so Jimmie could do some fishing. Luka and I read by the river, and were surrounded by butterflies. Literally dozens of them. I need to look them up to find out what kind they were…but they were everywhere!

 

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Just a handful of the butterflies swarming us by the river!

Just a handful of the butterflies swarming us by the river!

Close-up of one of the butterflies. Anyone know what this is? Not a Monarch, I know that much.

Close-up of one of the butterflies. Anyone know what this is? Not a Monarch, I know that much.

Sadly, Jimmie wasn’t able to catch anything. At that point we were both pretty tired, so we took a nice nap….let me tell you, there’s nothing better than napping in the middle of the day.

After the nap, I decided that the majority of what you do when camping is either eat or prepare to eat. Seriously.

And here’s where I have to brag…I STARTED THE FIRE FROM COALS!!!!!!! No, it wasn’t pretty. But I did it!!!! I was so proud of myself I took a picture:

The fire I started!!

The fire I started!!

Dinner was veggie packets, corn on the cob, and pork tenderloin. YUM. Followed by S’mores and guitar playing, and staying up late talking about anything and everything. We left Sunday, feeling both tired and refreshed.

It felt good to get away. It felt good to connect on a level that didn’t involve computers or television or anything other than conversation. It felt good to go spur of the moment. And it felt good to be outside,¬†marveling at the beauty around me, spending time with those¬†I love, and feeling at peace. I’ll take that.

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