When change is gradual it seems like it's not quite so painful. Fortunately for us, most change is gradual. Every now and then, though, the seasons of life have defined lines. My family crossed one of those lines this week... we bought a travel trailer!
Growing up in the country, I never had occasion to go camping as a child. My husband, on the other hand, was a "city boy" and his family frequently went camping. He was the youngest of 5 children, so by the time his memories were being formed his family had a travel trailer. What is rather sad to me about that is the fact that those are practically the only memories he has. He remembers very little about his children except their camping trips.
I was introduced to camping as a bride of 6 months. We borrowed a tent and made do with whatever else we had that would serve as camping supplies. I remember sleeping in our coats on our first camp-out because it was in the 40s at night and we didn't have sleeping bags. We cooked our meals over an open fire. I absolutely loved it! Since then we've accumulated an assortment of "real" camping supplies, including our own tent and sleeping bags... and we head for the mountains or the forest as often as we get a chance.
About 3 years ago we "upgraded" to a tent trailer. I actually like sleeping in a tent, but we decided a trailer would be more convenient. We could keep all our supplies together in it (and not have to round them up every time we wanted to go camping), and if we wanted we could even travel with it. For camping it was great! But for traveling, it was more trouble than it was worth.
This spring we have decided that the time has come to get a real travel-trailer for a variety of reasons, camping being the least of them. For several years I have been a consultant for Sonlight Curriculum and we travel to various homeschool conventions each summer. We have been pulling a utility trailer to these events anyway to get my display materials there. Our tent trailer was not big enough for the display materials plus what we would need to live in the trailer for several days. Not only that, it had no bathroom. The new RV will give us what we needed in that capacity. Also, we live in a very small house. We have talked about building an addition to give us a little more elbow room. However, my husband has not the time nor skill to accomplish such an undertaking. But we can use the RV as an office and spare bedroom. And, of course, take it camping if we want to.
So... I figure... our tent-camping days are over. *sigh* We have officially reached middle age! *grin* I know we will love having the trailer... and it will be so convenient for traveling... but still... it's just a little sad.