PIPSICO SCOUT RESERVATION — I have been quiet. Fearful of what I will say, and what will be inferred from what is left unsaid.

I’m tired, so tired. It was work related, but now, I’m recovering from a three-day, two-night camping trip that enlightened me, filled my cup with gratitude and left me utterly spent.

It’s been a while that I had fun, challenged myself in a way that was just physically and mentally exhausting.

My boys and I went with their Cub Scout pack (the oldest just moved up to Boy Scouts earlier this year) to Pipsico, outside Surry, Virginia, for a weekend of merit-badge earning and learning.

Pipsico is on an old Southern plantation along the James River. The former plantation home sat on a cliff overlooking said river until it burned down. Scouts can earn their archeology merit badge by digging up the old foundation.

Anyway, the boys shot guns, cooked over excellent camp fires, played with their peers and had an awesome time.

I learned that I’m a little too high strung right now and really needed this camping trip. It opened my eyes to the fact that I have been working way too much. I have been missing seeing my baby boys grow into capable youths.

I’m out of shape — as our 6 miles over nine flights of stairs on one day proved. I have not practiced being kind to myself and should be kinder to others.

We loved the smell of burned cedar, the joy of conquering something new for the first time and a good laugh with friends. We definitely need to do this again — sooner rather than later.

Below are a few photos from the trip.