Read: I’ve been camping all of two times, both when I was waaay younger and didn’t comprehend the amount of serious work needed to actually go camping.
I thought camping meant roughing it and getting away from the real world, but apparently it means packing everything but the stucco on your house so you can live like you do at home, just with a buttload of mosquitoes and maybe some bears roaming through your turf.
I’m not cool with bears nor bugs; therefore, making me the anti-camper.
See, my boyfriend got me all hyped on the idea of going camping in his friend’s cabin this summer. Read: cabin, which meant running water, a stove-top, a bed, and WALLS. Therefore, I was stoked. But when those plans fell through and I saw the sadness on my crestfallen boyfriend’s face, I felt kinda bad. So I bought us a reservation near Santa Cruz, and we’re headed there tomorrow.
As in rough and tumble camping.
As in a tent, bears, and a whole lotta bugs.
And I don’t know how I feel about this.
Of course I’m excited to get away from Sacramento for a little bit. It’s supposed to be 80 degrees which sounds amazing since I’m sweating myself silly in the 105 degree heat here. But otherwise, there are some things I’m not too sure about.
Enter: The Novice Camper’s Not-Too-Sure-About-Camping-Camping-Guide
1. No perfume = scared for my life. While it sounds odd, I have a serious smelling problem. Not that I smell bad, but I have an intense, irrational fear of smelling bad. It’s never happened, but I never, ever want to be thatperson who reeks of body odor and doesn’t know it or can’t do anything about it. And since apparently wearing perfume will attract bugs and bears, I have to forgo my signature scent for a few days and risk it going au naturel. Just the thought of smelling like a bad mixture of chicken noodle soup and rotten cheese is scarier than facing off with a grizzly.
2. Bugs, bugs, oh, and did I mention MORE FREAKIN’ BUGS? I already have issues when I spot a fly, a mosquito, or a spider somewhere in my house. You guys have about 97% of land to roam free; why the hell are you in my bathroom? I really don’t understand the purpose of flies or mosquitoes except to annoy the living hell out of me. And the idea of them everywhere is making me a little itchy already.
3. Oh, and FREAKIN’ BEARS (or lions, tigers, mountain lions, and serial killers). It may sound farfetched, and everyone I’ve talked to who camps says I have “nothing to worry about” and proceeds to roll their eyes as if being scared of a bear attack is this psychotic idea, but I am petrified of these animals. We’re in their territory, so if Smokey decided he wanted my cajun chicken sausage sandwich, he could mosey on over at any time and eat that as a snack and my head for dessert. And serial killers… campers are their prime targets. Have you seen House of Wax starring Paris Hilton? The movie is awful but the plot is plausible: a bunch of good lookin’ teens roughin’ it in the woods and BAM, decapitation by sword. Or something.
4. No cupcakes? If I can’t bake cupcakes, I’m seriously depressed.
5. It’s not a house; therefore, it sucks. I’m a bathroom-kitchen-lounging-around kinda girl. Bathroom-kitchen-lounging-around kinda girls enjoy houses or places where they can relax, walk to the bathroom, sit their bare butt on the toilet without worrying about diseases or bugs, and go about their business. Or take hot showers that don’t require wearing flip flops due to bugs or weird foot diseases. Having to walk in the dark wildnerness just to take a leak or depositing four quarters for a shower is crazy talk. If anything, the state park should be paying me to shower so I don’t stink up the place.
6. No Facebook. Wait, no Facebook… cool. As much as I love staying connected and knowing that a girl from high school is going to Tahoe tonight–party!–or someone’s baby just threw up everywhere (since these facts practically make my LIFE and I care sooo much) it’ll be awesome to take a break for awhile. I love blogging and I’ll miss all my loyal readers dearly, but at the same time, I’m looking forward to missing out on other people’s lives…and I will not miss those stupid Farmville requests.
While it may sound like I’m a bit too whiny, I’m actually looking forward to this camping adventure, mainly because it’s something new and I’m always down to try something once.
But also, hotels are always awesome, and as I say, oldies can be goodies, too…
Speaking of oldies but goodies, I haven’t mentioned cake pops for awhile.
And needless to say, they’ve been on my mind.
So I made some… S’mores Cake Pops, to commemorate my camping trip tomorrow.
And while I’m hoping it won’t be, it could be my last post. Who knows–I may perish in a mosquito attack or be a mountain lion’s dessert. But if I survive, you bet your ass I’m going to be on I Survived telling my story and showing you my crazy scarred arm.
Enough about mountain lions, let’s get poppin’!
S’mores Cake Pops *adapted by Wilton’s S’mores Cake Ball Pops recipe
1 box chocolate cake mix (I used Duncan Hines)
1/3 cup oil
1 cup water
1 small box sugar free/fat free (SF/FF) chocolate pudding mix
2 cups crushed graham crackers, divided
1 jar (7 oz) marshmallow fluff or creme
2 pkg Light Cocoa flavored candy melts
Mini marshmallows, if desired
1. Prepare cake mix according to package directions, using the 4 eggs, 1/3 cup oil and the 1 cup water. Beat in dry pudding mix until blended, about 1 minute. Pour into a lightly greased 13×9 inch baking pan and bake, approximately 30-33 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely.
2. Crumble the cake into small crumbs into a large bowl. Mix in ONE cup of the crushed graham crackers and the entire jar of marshmallow fluff. Using a spoon (or your best tool, your hands!) mix together the fluff, crumbs and cake crumbs until it’s fully combined. Roll into small balls and place on a wax paper lined baking pan. Freeze for about 30 minutes, or until solid & chilled but not frozen.
3. Meanwhile, prepare candy melts according to package directions. Cake pops are easiest to dip in a tall bowl rather than a wider one. Dip the tip of one lollypop stick into the melts and insert it into a cake ball. Dip the entire cake ball into the candy melts, coating it completely. Allow the excess candy melts to drip off the sides. You can lightly tap the stick with your finger, or swirl it around gently. Sprinkle tops of cake pops with remaining graham cracker crumbs, or top with mini marshmallows, if desired. Allow to dry upright in a styrofoam block (I got mine at Dollar Tree).
These are definitely labor-intensive but way less messy (in the end) than your average s’more. And they taste just like them.
They’d be perfect for your next campfire or cook-out, and when it’s cold, it’d be a good snack or treat for a slumber party.
I’m also going to take some–justincase–because who knows, maybe mountain lions like cake pops and I could probably use them to persuade a serial killer not to cut my head off if it came down to that. You never know.