We were not able to get everybody together for our traditional summer vacation with Chad's family this year. So Chad and I decided to host a Cousin Camp for the NC grandkids. I had 7 little ones ages 1-6 for 24 hours of fun and excitement! We had a great time and hope to make it a yearly tradition. I hope one summer ALL 18+ of the cousins can come.
We started the day with an Opening Ceremony. We went over Cousin Camp Rules for Fun, sang songs, danced, and read stories. This pic is of them playing Simon Says.
We went on a Scavenger Hunt together, taking turns reading the clues. We included pics of the locations for the non-readers.
These punching balls were the treasure at the end of the hunt. Masen's came undone and made a really "fun" noise. So everyone else decided to deflate theirs and blow them up again repeatedly to duplicate the sound effect. They laughed themselves to tears.
We came inside for a snack. Here is a pic of Alex showing off his missing tooth.
We changed into our swimsuits and played outside in the pool, water table, and slip n slide the rest of the morning.
We came in for lunch and some quiet time.
We played Bingo and won Silly Bands, played Hullabaloo, did puzzles, and held a little family quiz game. It was funny to hear their answers. They are all still a little unsure how this whole family thing works. Madylen told us that cousins were not her family because they did not live in her house. When I asked Ryan to tell me the name of one of his Daddy's sisters, he pointed to me. I told him that Daddy was Lara and Emily's brother. He gave me this "You must be crazy look." and another one of the kids, I can't remember who now, "No, Chuck is Aunt Lara's brother."
After game time, we did Art projects. The shrinky dinks we did as a whole group. Then I selfishly stole some one on one time with each kiddo to do sand art while the others played in the play room together. It was nice to be able to chat with each of my nieces and nephews. Because they love playing together so much, it is hard to develop the personal relationship with each of them as individuals that I really want to have with them.
We headed back outside after our quiet activities for fun in the backyard. They had a great time performing stunts on the swingset and trampoline. We ate yogurt pops outside, and played until we just couldn't take the heat anymore.
The rest of the afternoon is the part that Andrew has declared "The bestest, greatest part of Cousin Camp." I pulled out all of our costumes and the kids played pretend and planned out a movie they wanted to make. They were hilarious. What wonderful imaginations these kids have. They practiced their movie for an hour, with the script changing every time. Of course the general theme of Star Wars (with a ballerina and Bat Girl) stayed the same.
Chad filmed the kids making their movies. (We will put these up tonight...the software for my new camera is not on the computer yet).
We popped popcorn and watched our movies on the big screen.
Finally it was time for bed. The cousins helped set up the tent. We read stories and scriptures inside the tent and closed with a song and prayer. We turned out the lights and said good night. Then they stayed up in the tent taking turns telling stories until 9pm, when we told them it was time to go to sleep.
The next morning we ate blueberry pancakes and bananas for breakfast and played until our families picked us up.
I had so much fun with these sweet little ones and can't wait until next year! I already have ideas brewing. (If these weren't enough pictures for you, I can burn a cd with all 300 I took). LOL