kids

An Unposed Session at Padre Island National Seashore

It’s been a quiet year in terms of photography for me.

Probably none of this seems immediately related to these photos so sorry about that.

I’ve been over here playing around with different ideas (not photography related), trying to figure out what my path is. I still don’t know what that path is, if I’m being honest and I’m still over here dabbling in it all.

I didn’t want to put pressure on this thing that I loved. I was afraid it would turn into something I didn’t want, if I kept doing that this year and that thought terrified me. I already saw my spark fading as I got caught up in the drama and BS related to social media and I retreated hard and fast and with that I backed off from everything photography related including photographing my own kids. I’m hoping all of that was necessary and is fulfilling some purpose for my furture self.

Social media is hard. It’s funny because I probably fall into the same category I always have in everything in life. Not quite cool enough for the mainstream kids, but not outcast enough for the outcasts. I’m just stuck somewhere in the middle without belonging anywhere. This is probably a little bit my fault because it’s no secret to myself that I don’t commit enough to people to really belong in a community. I hold myself back for fear of judgement. It’s rare anyone actually gets to see me all the way, which is why Tyler is probably pretty much the only person who sees it all.

What if I’m not who they thought I was? What if I disappoint them? It’s less stress (or so it sometimes seems) to just do it all on my own. This thinking is wrong, right? Is it imposter syndrome that makes me feel this way maybe? Why do I even care what “they” think to begin with? I know better, but I’m still here in this place.

I don’t really know what the purpose of all of this is other than it just feels good to talk about it. Maybe others feel the same and now they know they’re not alone. Maybe it just makes me make more sense to people. I don’t know.

I know this session is the first time I picked up my camera to do this kind of thing in a long time. I had a vision and I was nervous it was going to just bomb and I’d come away with nothing. The first probably 30 minutes felt like that actually. I had to let go in a lot of ways. Once I just decided to let my kids be free and occasionally prompt them into things that would bring joy, it got good. I let Saida get in the waves fully clothed because it felt like freedom and we needed that. Mostly this is just them and me there to see it for what it was and document it the way I knew I could.

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24 Rainy Day Camping Activities for Kids

Rainy Day Camping Activities for Kids

I know I’ve talked about it before, but I’ve got a knack for planning camping trips on rainy or poor weather weekends. My talent for doing this is incredible actually. Just ask my family. You want to know when it’s going to rain? Just ask me for my camping schedule and you’ve got the answer. We’re headed to the coast in July and I’m already planning for hurricane weather because that would be my luck. You can bet I’ll be keeping a real close eye on the forcast during that time.

So since it’s obviously going to be raining for my next camping trip and the one after that and the one after that, here is the big question. What kind of rainy day activities can we do to keep the kids busy in the camper? I mean, we’ve watched every single movie in our camper at least 5 times and we haven’t even been camping for all that long. There are only so many times you can watch Sing or the Minions Movie over and over again. I’ve seen this question asked over and over again on camping forums so I’ve compiled the ultimate list of rainy day camping activities for your young kids.

The Ultimate List of Rainy Day Camping Activities For Your Kids

Markers and coloring books

Markers and coloring books

  1. Watch Movies - Yes it’s screen time and that’s not what camping is about, but for me camping is family time so if we’re all enjoying a movie together with a little popcorn, then I’m cool with that. Our camper favorites lately seem to be Sing, Minions, and The Lorax.

  2. Play Board Games - Candy Land, Monopoly, Guess Who, Battle Ship, Connect 4, Chutes and Ladders, Sorry, Trouble, Checkers, or any board game you already have hiding in a closet somewhere will do.

  3. Play Card Games - A whole family activiite sure to please. We love Uno and Go Fish. My almost 6 year old daughter would probably play all day. Don’t forget about games like Skip-Bo, Old Maid, War, Apples to Apples, Crazy 8, or Charades for Kids.

  4. Color - We prefer a couple of coloring books and some markers that stay in our camper. Both of my kids love to color. Crayons can melt if they get too hot so I wouldn’t suggest keeping them in the camper if it gets hot in storage.

  5. Paint - I’ve seen suggestions of painting rocks which looks like a ton of fun. Some people have also mentioned leaving them behind for the next set of campers to discover. I love that idea. Seems like a fun way to put a smile on someone’s face. Also some old school water colors and paper are easy to pack and always a fun activity for kids.

  6. Play outside (if it’s safe to do so) - Just make sure you have a couple of kid size ponchos on hand (or swimsuits if it’s warm enough) and pack their rain boots (or crocs) and you’re good to go for a little rainy day outdoor adventure. Of course if there is lightening near by or dangerous wind, don’t do this. Use common sense folks, but have fun.

  7. Play-Doh - cheap and easy to bring along.

  8. Fort Making in the Bunks - If you have bunks that is and plenty of blankets or sleeping bags, pillows or just anything that can be used for a fort. I haven’t met a kid that didn’t enjoy fort making yet.

  9. Learn Origami - Keep a stash of paper around and maybe grab an inexpensive book off Amazon for learning origami.

  10. Make Slime - You can buy a slime kit or just have the ingredients you need on hand. There are endless recipes for slime on the internet. Just google it and choose a recipe that looks interesting or easy or whatever you want it to be.

  11. Bake Cookies - Our favorite ones to make come from the Magnolia Cookbook. Oddly they’re better after they cool off which is unlike any cookie recipe I’ve ever tried. A premade dough works just fine as well, but from scratch will give you more to do and can be a great family activity for a rainy day.

  12. Legos - Bring a tub or just a small set. You’re never too old for legos.

  13. Read - Grab some books that your kids can read on their own or bring along some to read to them. I went to college to be an elementary school teacher so I’m a fan of reading to kids anytime, not just when it’s raining.

  14. Seek and Find Books - Think Where’s Waldo or the I Spy books. Both of my kids love these.

  15. Puzzles - I love that this can also be an individual thing or a family thing. Bring along all kinds of puzzles ranging from 24 pieces all the way to 500 pieces (depending on how rainy it’ll be or on ages and number of participants).

  16. Jenga - Because this one also never gets old.

  17. Tic-tac-toe - This is our go to at restaurants, but why not on a rainy day in the camper too.

  18. Visit Local Indoor Attractions in nearby city- Museums, Children’s Museums, Aquariums, Kid friendly brewery or winery, trampoline parks, bowling, etc. Just google indoor activities for whatever city you are near and get out and explore.

  19. Craft Kits - you can create your own kit or buy one ready to go. This can be as simple as beads and string or that super cool dream catcher kit in my Amazon list for rainy day activities.

  20. Science Experiments - Honestly even I’d have to just google this one. I wouldn’t know where to start, but I’ve seen it mentioned in forums so I thought I’d include it here.

  21. Dominos - I haven’t played dominos in years and would totally have to figure it all out again, but I do remember having fun. Seems like a great game for kids and adults alike.

  22. Paper Doll Books - I’ve never done paper dolls with my daughter, but I’d bet if I pulled this out on a rainy day, she’d be in heaven.

  23. Joke Books - This is for when you’re desperate and everyone is getting on each other’s last nerve. Hopefully a joke or two will get everyone smiling again.

  24. Magnatiles - We don’t have magnatiles, buy I’ve almost invested in them several times. Everyone who has them swears they’ll keep their kids busy creating for hours.


Just after the sun came back out, looking at birds on the water.

Just after the sun came back out, looking at birds on the water.

Get everything you need to entertain your kiddos on a rainy day in the RV on Amazon. Click the button below to go to my Rainy Day Shopping List created specifically for this blog post.

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A cold day spent inside at Moody Gardens Rain Forest Pyramid while camping in Galveston.

A cold day spent inside at Moody Gardens Rain Forest Pyramid while camping in Galveston.

Do you camp? What are some of your favorite rainy day camping activities? Share them with me in the comments for others to see.

Thanks for reading my post!


-Monica

Want to see more of my posts for beginner RV campers? Click the links below.

Mom Brain: It's a Legit Thing

I feel like there are endless ways I could start this blog post.  For example:

Does anyone spend most of their day doing all the little things they'd never remember?

The term "pregnancy brain" is bullshit.  It insinuates that maybe you'll get your brain back after the baby is born and obviously that couldn't be any farther from the truth.  

Or my personal favorite...

So this one time my husband was late to work after he spent an hour looking for his keys.  Hell, I even helped and it just so happens I was the one who misplaced them.  Any guesses on where we found them?  

That last one was this morning.  

But for real though, please tell me I'm not the only one.  We moms go through our entire day automatically doing so many things without even realizing it.  Just last week I was getting ready to go somewhere (I can't even remember where) and was in my bathroom working on hair and makeup.  Saida was talking to me and periodically Corbin would come into the bathroom needing something.  I looked down and at him on one of these quick visits and he had an applesauce squeezie in his hands.  I remembered giving him a yogurt squeezie at some point, but not an applesauce squeezie.  How did he get this thing open on his own? I looked in front of me and lo and behold, there is the damn cap to the applesauce squeezie on my bathroom counter.  I opened that thing at some point and handed it over and had absolutely no memory of it.  I was in the middle of something and just did it without thinking. No big deal really, but he was totally taking advantage of me and on his third squeezie in like 10 minutes.  I wonder what else he could have gotten away with.  "Yeah sure honey, let me open this bag of flour.  Go ahead now, move along."

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Or sometimes people will ask me where a small bruise came from that I don't remember getting.  I walk into furniture, walls, doorways on the regular, but could never even begin to tell you which incident a bruise came from.  Likely I don't even remember the incident ever happening, but I have some sort of vague recollection of saying ow at some point... I think.  Sometimes there just isn't enough time in the day to really take note of these things and my head is already filled with too much other stuff.  

So anyway, when Tyler came to me this morning and asked if I'd seen his keys, obviously I said no.  I asked him twenty questions about what was happening the last time he had his keys and blamed the children for maybe moving them (honestly I still blame the children).  We even looked in their playroom and I texted the neighbor to see if we had lost them there a couple nights before.  In a last ditch effort I checked my purse.  There they were.  For about two seconds I tried to come up with places I could hide them that we hadn't looked yet, but I hadn't had coffee yet and Tyler was 5 feet away so I just handed them over.

Someone please tell me how they got in there.  All I can figure is one of the kids handed them to me yesterday when we were on our way out the door and I just opened my purse and slid them in without thinking and I never really figured it out because we were taking my car with push button start and not Tyler's truck.  I don't really know, but this is at least how I imagine it all going down in my head.  

This is my life.  I really don't know what to say.  Sorry Tyler.  For the record, I still think it's the kids' fault.  Good thing they're cute.