The following photos are a long time coming, but last October I took Maddie on her first camping trip. It was all part of a problematically-themed YMCA program (though I'm happy to report they're ditching all the problematic parts starting this spring), but it was a great way to introduce her to sleeping in a tent outside in a low pressure environment: a daddy-daughter group excursion to a YMCA camp facility.
It was a resounding success. You can just see it in her face in that black and white photo—a twinkle in her eyes and the hint of a smile almost visible above the lip of her rain jacket, standing there in the drizzle.
Despite 40ºF overnight temperatures and howling, gusty winds, my daughter instantly loved the whole camping experience. Whether it was sleeping in a tent, or spending an entire day outside, or simply poking at a fire with a stick, I saw a child in her element. We get to do the whole thing over again in late April, and we're both pretty excited about it.