We wanted to give the grandkids a camping experience.
We were unsure how things would go with the grandkids, so we chose a campground only about 10 minutes from their house.
We chose the Minneapolis Southwest KOA – Jordan due to it’s proximity to our daughter’s house. I was a ten minute drive from their house and a 50-mile drive from our house. To avoid known bottlenecks and traffic congestion, we took a driving route that was a little more than an hour drive.
Our reserved site was #103 and immediately we knew we had a problem. It was a tight site with a cement patio with a round table and four chairs. It also had a fire ring and four more chairs on a second cement pad. You could almost reach over and touch the nearby cabin from the table. It had recently rained and the gravel was wet and muddy. This was to be expected since the entire campground seemed to drain to this area. On the bright side, we were close to the mini-gold and small playground. This was one of their “deluxe” sites with full hookups.
It was not the style of site that we are accustomed to and would not allow green space for the pre-schoolers. As I finished setting up, Lynn came back from a walk with Crosby. She had found a grassy site across from a big playground. It was not full hookups, only water and electric. After conversations with the office, we went back to unhook the trailer from the utilities and move to site #52. It was a much larger site and on top of the hill, so it was drier. We did have to use the Anderson levelers on the passenger side to get the trailer level. This is something we are used to doing and actually not using the levelers is probably the exception.
After the move, neither of use felt like doing the prep (and marinate time) for the scheduled Tropical Shrimp. Instead, we had pasta salad, crackers and hummus, pepper jack cheese, and a nice white wine from Loxton Cellars.
The next episode of Jeeves and Wooster was on the schedule after determining that the local channels were not available in Jordan with our antenna. We do have good WiFi. From our site I can see a repeater about 40′ away.
We had to close the windows overnight. The temperatures dropped over night into the low 50s.
I woke up about 6:00 AM and got dressed. I took Crosby out for his first morning constitutional. When we got back, Lynn had just gotten up. That meant COFFEE TIME! We also had sausage and French toast on the menu. It always seems to taste better outside on a crisp cool morning.
Around 9:00 AM our daughter arrived with the grandkids. Our very busy time was just beginning. The kids were shown where they would sleep that night. It didn’t take long and the table and couch were converted to beds. The kids thought they were so fun that they wanted to go to bed.
Instead, the kids went to the playground. We also set up the screen tent and rug to make a play area with protection from the sun.
The lunch catered to the kids — hot dogs cooked over the campfire. Crosby even got to enjoy one after one of the kids dropped it out of his bun to the ground.
Lynn also brought some craft projects along, more trips to the playground happened, games were played, and the dish pans were pressed into service for water play. The temperature got to 88º F on this day. Ice pops were also eaten.
Getting ready for dinner was difficult. Both the grill and the camp stove were in use and trying to keep a pair of 4-year olds out of the hot zone was a challenge. The menu was the Tropical Shrimp, chicken tenders, and a rice pilaf. After dinner we made a camping classic, s’mores.
Bedtime was about 7:30 PM. It only took until about 9:30 PM for the kids to quiet down and sleep. Then about 2:30 AM the rain, thunder, and lightning came. We got about 1″ of rain. We were thankful that we had moved to higher ground and the kids were not troubled by the storm.
We got up and had pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Our daughter arrived about 9:00 AM and gathered the kids. We packed up and pulled out of the campground by 11:00 AM. Since we didn’t stop at the dump station, I took the trailer to the nearby Rice Creek Chain of Lakes Campground and paid $12 to use their dump station the next day.
|Date||Start Location||Start City||End Location||End City||Miles|
|5/23/2021||Home||White Bear Twp., MN||Minneapolis Southwest KOA||Jordan, MN||49.5|
|5/25/2021||Minneapolis Southwest KOA||Jordan, MN||Home||White Bear Twp., MN||49.5|
|5/26/2021||Maintenance Trip||Rice Creek Chain of Lakes Campground||Centerville, MN||18.1|
The meal list was designed to incorporate leftovers to reduce the amount of ingredients we needed to pack for this longer trip. We also always incorporate some stable items for backup in case the main plan goes out the window.
|Sunday, May 23||Dinner||Tropical Shrimp|
|Monday, May 24||Breakfast||French Toast|
|Lunch||Hot Dogs on the campfire|
Corn on the cob
Chips and salsa
|Dinner||Chicken tenders w/ranch dressing|
|Tuesday, May 25||Breakfast||Pancakes|
|Lunch||Grilled cheese & tomato soup|
Homemade chili (frozen)