Sunday, October 5, 2008


Things we learned on this trip....

1) Don't send the Batzers to the grocery store hungry.

2) Layou children do not need expensive toys only furniture.

3) Pak n Plays make excellent anti burglar devices.

4) Two year olds can't sleep in bunk beds.

5) Sleeping bags make decent landing pads.

6) Toaster ovens make fairly consistent s'mores.

7) Johns aren't rainproof.

8) Gettysburg sucked in 1863 & '64.

9) The government didn't care then anymore than it cares now.

10) Hmmmm, bacon.

Well, our days of tents and headlamps are on hold for a little while until small children are capable of making it all night without the bathroom. This trip was to Gettysburg at the Drummer Boy Campground. The cabin in Picket's (sic) Thicket (Because cute names make you want to stay there.) was a little small for the group, but cozy. It was a place in which you could not get along with genetic relatives, but chosen relatives made it pleasantly amusing.
The Batzers arrived first as, well, we had a whole 45 minute commute. We quickly realized that we would have to take the double bed as John could in no way fit in a bunk bed. I did consider letting Dann snuggle in bed with John but eventually decided he wouldn't get drunk enough. And we all know that Jake is the only one he snuggles with sober.
While we waited, we stocked up for the weekend. (See number #1.) Everyone else arrive at almost exactly 8 PM in a timing miracle and just in time for us to watch the first presidential debate. Well start to watch the debate until we quickly realized our conversation was more interesting, insightful and made up of something more than sound bites.
With four engineers and a mom in the cabin we found an efficient way to set up the Pak n Plays, so there was still walking room. (See number #3) Then we spent a night listening to the rain that while mostly soothing did at time get rather loud.
The next morning we plowed through two pounds of bacon (See number #10), muffins, and bagels while the boys entertained themselves is their new surroundings. (See number #2) It also amazes me how a group of adults can be completely enthralled by toddlers pointing. Or "sssshhhhhooooooes".
We took a short trip to the battlegrounds and posh new visitors' center to find out that it was the official grand opening and PACKED. We did manage to get the boys' passports stamped and the Layous' picture of the park sign. We tagged along on a ranger's tour about the aftermath of the battle (See numbers #8 & 9) The ranger was very knowledgeable and approachable, and we chatted with him for several minutes after the tour. We were going to go to Gettysburg Winery but got sidetracked by lunch, naps, rain, and laziness. The boys were valiant enough to make a run for beer and s'mores components but found that three males in a grocery store looking for marshmallows might as well have been a roadblock challenge on The Amazing Race.
When they finally got back, John with the assistance of Anne sacrificed the elasticity of his skin for yummy burgers and brauts. (See number #7) This also ended any chance of fire cooked s'mores. (See number #6)
As we settled in for the PSU game and Apples to Apples, Dann and Karen did their best to figure out a way for the boys to sleep in the bunk bed room that did not involve falling out of beds or ending up under the beds. (See numbers #4 & 5)

Then about all that was left the next morning was to pack and say until New Year's after another pound of bacon and a dozen eggs.