We spent two nights at a campground in NJ and spend one day at the lake beach on site and drove out to the ocean one day. I think Zoe (and all of us really) had a great time. We certainly didn't let the fact that we were camping interfere with our traditional birthday pancake breakfast.
Zoe is so big, and SO independent. I often find myself helping Leo (at five!) get his shoes on and his arms into his jacket while Zoe gets herself ready - assuming she's in the mood to cooperate, of course. She is definitely in that 2.5-3.5 tough age where everything is a power struggle. But when she is at her best she is amazing. She is eager to help and wants to be JUST like her big brother.
She is talking a lot (A LOT) but still has a few baby words that I just can't get enough of. For example, instead of "regular" she says "regulee" and she has trouble with the "sp" sound - using "f" instead. So she likes "Feaking Fanish" and getting "Farkley clean."
Camping was a blast, we skipped stones, roasted hot dogs and ate s'mores. The new additions to our gear this year: the camping stove and hammock were thoroughly enjoyed. Zoe spent her free time around the campsite either relaxing in the hammock or collecting frogs in a bucket. (Leo was too squeamish to touch the frogs.)
I'm glad we did both the lake and the ocean because the lake was just the right size and intensity to give the kids a bit of freedom and get them used to the water before hitting the "real" beach. And this year they both spend the majority of their time IN the water (rather than treating it like a giant sandbox) and had fun dodging waves.
I will leave you with the birthday interview. Sadly it's really hard to hear her, but I tried to repeat her answers. Still adorable.