S’mores how I love thee…

…let me count the ways!

Take all of the ingredients in a s’more individually and if you ask me they aren’t anything spectacular.  Graham crackers – eh, they are OK.  Marshmallows – sweet and chalky, then mushy, and finally sticky.  Chocolate – well, OK chocolate is great but I am not sure the standard Hershey’s chocolate bar would be my first choice if I’m going to splurge on calories.  But you put all those ingredients together and something magical happens!  I am pretty sure it has something to do with the amount of effort it takes to toast the marshmallow just to your liking and the science that goes in to how the warm marshmallow melts the chocolate not too much but JUST right.  Anyone who has ever tried an “indoor s’more” in the microwave knows what I am talking about here-you just can’t duplicate the toasty goodness of a campfire s’more.

RoastingMarshmallow

While I am sure there are many of you that are s’more purists, I thought I would share some tasty variations on the s’more that you might enjoy:

Almond Joy:

Use Kraft Jet-Puffed Toasted Coconut marshmallows and Hershey’s with Almonds, Graham Crackers

Mounds:

Same marshmallows and grahams with Hershey’s Dark Chocolate

York:

Chocolate Grahams, regular marshmallow, York peppermint patty.

Strawberry Shortcake:

Honey graham crackers, strawberry jam, regular marshmallow, Hershey’s white chocolate.

The Lazy Man:

Moonpie roasted on a stick. (As good as it is easy!)

S’more Shooter:

1/2 ounce Chocolate syrup

1/2 ounce cream or half and half

1/4 ounce Bailey’s

1/2 ounce Marshmallow Vodka

mini marshmallows

Pour syrup in bottom of glass, mix remaining liquids in a shaker with ice and pour. Top with mini marshmallows.  If you really want to get fancy you can rim the glass with chocolate syrip dipped in crushed graham crackers.

That’s all I have for now.  What is your favorite way to make a s’more?

What is Camping?

It seems like a simple question, right? Webster defines camping as “to live temporarily in or as if in a camp or outdoors, usually for recreation”. Yet, defining camping is ultimately in the eye of the beholder. One aspect of camping Amy and I enjoy is people watching. We love to walk around the campground and check out what everybody is camping in whether it is a  pop-up, travel trailer, fifth wheel, motorhome, or tent. Actually, we have seen some people camp in teepees.We stir up conversations, find out where they are from, why they camp, etc.

Camping means different things to different people. For some it is embracing the simple life and getting in touch with nature. This means nothing more than a simple tent. I have met some people who would never set foot in a camper  because it is not “real” camping. Our first camping experience as a couple was at a campground near our house called Cedarbrook. I met an older gentlemen who had been camping since he was a boy scout. We had a good conversation on what camping means. He was there with his wife who insisted on camping in a travel trailer. She had to have her own bathroom and shower. As a good husband, he respected her wishes and they own an RV. However,  he told me that he prefered tent camping to anything else. He told me stories of winter camping in Michigan. WOW! That seemed crazy to me, until I tried it myself. This man told me the only way to experience true nature is to camp as close to it as possible (tenting). Being in a camper is not “real” camping, he told me.

While this man enjoyed the experience of tent camping, I have talked with other campers that insist that pop-up campers are the way to go. They are the best of both worlds. On one hand they offer the nature aspect of camping, since it’s essentially a glorified tent on wheels, yet it provides the luxury of being off the ground and other amenities such as water, stove,refigerator, etc.

A buddy of mine owns a 30 foot travel trailer and loves it. He has a wife and two little kids and for his family neither a tent nor or a pop up would be their definition of camping. Although both he and his wife both started out tenting and then moved up to a pop-up, when the kids came along there was need for more space and a sense of self-containment. Bathrooms were a must. And truth be told, my buddy could not live without his flat screen tv or sattelite on a trip camping 🙂

As Amy and I visit more and more campgrounds, we meet many people that have made their camper their home. Many campgrounds not only offer weekly rates, many also accomodate campers who stay “long term”. Most of these type of campers choose 5th wheelers. “Permament campers” want the freedom to up and move whenever they choose and live in regions of the country dependant on the seasons. Amy and I joke a lot about selling the house and buying a fifth wheeler as our portable home. Though sometimes I am not sure if we are joking….

For me, camping is an escape from the reality of the stresses of the work week, deadlines, projects, etc, etc. Camping gives me that much needed break from every day life, even if it only lasts a weekend. It energizes me to get through the next week so that I can camp the following weekend! From a spiritual side of things, camping and embracing nature allows me to enjoy God’s creation and spend time with Him. Walking the trails, sitting on the benches next to the lake, and relaxing by the campfire give me that opportunity to experience God.

Amy and I started out with a tent. We loved tent camping with our dogs and they loved it too. After a few months of fall camping, we decided to buy a Rockwood (model 1980) pop up camper. We love our new camper and we have used it several times in the winter and this spring. As teachers, we are blessed to have the summer off so we have big plans to travel the country searching for more campgrounds and experiencing the peace of camping.

What does camping mean for you?

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Welcome Camp Enthusiasts!

Thanks for visiting our page.  We love camping and want to share a little of what we have learned along the way and learn from all of you as well.  We want this blog to be a place where you can share your tips, ask questions, and share some fun stories you have collected during your “campventures”.

Our goal is to build a site that will provide information on what we like best about campsites we visit, helpful tips to make travel, set-up, and camping stress-free, recipes we have tried and love, products that we can’t live without, and guest contributers that can answer all of your burning questions.

We are new at camping and especially new about blogging about it..so we invite your comments and advice!  🙂

Amy and Doug

We love camping