Sunday, July 25, 2021

The Flowers Explore - Maumelle State Park in Arkansas - 2021/07/09-11

Our third stop on this RV Adventure is Maumelle State Park in Arkansas, right on the edge of the Arkansas River. Instead of being a one-night stop, we'll be here for 3 days. 

We're leaving Louisburg Kansas, driving through Missouri, and finishing at Maumelle Park near Little Rock Arkansas. 
Today is one of our longer driving days, but 7 hours isn't too bad. It was pretty easy to get going from the Louisburg Cider House. We're leaving Kansas. 

And going through Missouri. I don't even think we had to stop through the entire state. 

Welcome to the Natural State of Arkansas!

Checking in at Maumelle Park was super easy. They gave us our camping spot, right on the Arkansas River, and I backed in without too much trouble. It's nice when the spots are super wide with nothing you might hit. 

The kids loved our location. Theresa and I let them run around while we got the RV set up. 

There was one thing that didn't survive the trip. When we opened the kids room, Theresa noticed that their TV was on the floor. When I checked it out, it appears that the bottom screws that mount the TV ripped out of the plastic. When I took it apart, I noticed they don't go to anything structural, only to the thin plastic shell. The top two screws must have rattled themselves loose. Surprisingly when I plugged it in, everything still works. I'll have to figure out a better way to mount this in the future. 

The kids have been busy while we set up. Since we're on a river, they made a homemade fishing rod with a stick they found and a bit rope I had set down.  

Ian explaining how the fish will be attracted to the shiny pop-top and bite it. There's no hook, but if they're quick they can pull it out of the water. 

And speaking of water, I asked the kids if they wanted to help me set up the water lines to the RV. They're curious to see how it all works. 

It's a beautiful location, right on the river. We're towards the end of the campground, so there's not a lot of traffic here either. 

Dinner is one of Alli's new favorites. Spaghetti. And the views out the window are beautiful. 

Washing up some of the dishes from dinner. 

And watching a movie together before bedtime. This two seater couch is a little small, but we'll be getting an upgrade in a couple weeks. 

The next morning, it was a little hot and humid, but we've got some walking to catch up on. 

We followed the river, making our way past a bunch of other RVs, saying Good Morning to everyone we meet, until we came to the houseboats where we turned around. 

We're going to be building a fire in the firepit tonight so the kids have been collecting any good sticks they see. 

We're going to have a celebratory dinner tonight now that we finally have a chance to slow down a little. We took the truck into Little Rock to go shopping for supplies for the next week. I didn't know they had trollies here! 

What is that celebratory dinner? It's the kids' favorite meal ever. Better than pizza, hamburgers, Olive Garden, spaghetti, or any of that. 
Cheese Fondue with hot baguettes, big warm broccoli, and we made air fryer chicken tenders to go with it. All of it was delicious!

Time to go fishing with those homemade poles. We've got a little Tom and Huck here. 

Let me see what you've done to the ends of those lines. I see the Pop-Top from before. Alli said she found a worm yesterday and tied it around the end of the line. I guess it dried out a bit since yesterday. Hopefully the fish will like dehydrated worm still. 

We walked down to the boat ramp and they tossed their lines in the water, hopefully. 

But there were no fishes that decided to go for their bait. Fishing is hard with homemade fishing poles. 

What we can catch a lot of though is sticks. I had them gather big sticks, small sticks, bark, and some grass that had dried out. 

I taught them the basics of how to set up building a fire. Ian asked if I was going to rub sticks together to get it started. Not today buddy. Today I'll be using a lighter. 

And a short time later, viola! We have fire! 

So pretty. 

While we were out, because the kids love s'mores so much the first night, we picked up everything we needed to make them ourselves. We've got fire, roasting sticks, and all the ingredients. It's time to make dessert!


I love s'mores too. Theresa actually prefers just the toasted marshmallows. 

It's great to be able to get out on our bicycles again. And riding through forests is awesome, compared to riding down neighborhood streets. We've got to make up some mileage if we're going to reach 500 biking miles in a year. We've fallen a bit behind since we've been in Colorado. 

Alli is looking pretty big for that bike now. She got it for Christmas nearly a year and a half ago and she's certainly grown since then. 

The kids want another fire tonight so they can make s'mores. We set out again to scour the campground to find pieces of wood. There was a pretty good storm here last night that knocked a few branches down, and even uprooted a tree! We've got plenty of wood to pick from. 
As we were carrying our wood back, another couple of campers saw what we were doing and told us to come take their extra wood. They're leaving tomorrow and won't be able to use it all. We chit-chatted for a little while, I grabbed as much as my arms could carry, and we set off for our campsite. 

The kids have got the idea down now for how to make a fire. Start with dry grass, then bark, then teepee some sticks around it, making sure there's plenty of air for the fire. 

As we were working on building up the fire, the two nice ladies who gave us their firewood came walking up with a wagon filled with the rest of the wood that I wasn't able to carry. 
And not just firewood. One of them was bringing over a girl's bicycle. "An older couple gave this to us, but we only have grandkids who are boys. Would your daughter like to have a bike?"
Seriously? A free bike? Of course! And it's just the right size too!
They told Ian that they were sorry they didn't have anything for him, but loved his positive attitude when he said that he was really happy for his sister to get a new bike. 

That's great Alli! It's a good next bike for you. And it's pink and purple! Her favorite colors!

While I got the fire blazing good and strong, the kids went inside to write thank you cards the best way they know how. With crayons, scissors, and copy paper. 
Alli told them thank you for the new bike. Ian thanked them for all the firewood so he could make s'mores. I love it guys!

And after they delivered their cards, boy did we have a roaring fire going. Everyone is going to enjoy this tonight. 

Tonight is our last night at Maumelle State Park. We've loved being here on the banks of the Arkansas River, and the campground has been wonderful. But tomorrow we're packing up and moving to another site! Such is the life of a full-time RV family! On to the next adventure!

What about the kids' thoughts here? 
Alli - Rciso River (Arkansas River), My favorite prt ov it was rae homad fishig pols. I liket the smor. And I liket the fire. 
Ian - My favorite part was Alli got a bike. I like the s'mores we had made. We made fishing rod's. We didn't catch fish. We made a camp fire. 

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful campsite being right next to the Arkansas River. I immediately thought of Huckleberry Finn when I saw that opening photo of Ian & Alli with their homemade fishing rods. Fishing, biking, and campfires (Ian & Alli learned fast on how to start that fire!) where marshmallows can be roasted make for a great outdoors build upon that homey campfire scene, it may be time to introduce some songs around the campfire for some family sing-alongs! That was very thoughtful of the two women to offer that bike to Alli (couldn't ask for a more perfect size and color, either; and Ian reacted like a loving big brother with his response, too), along with all that extra firewood; and loved the gratitude the kids felt by creating those handwritten thank you cards! Wonderful time at the Maumelle State Park! EOM