Friday, May 25, 2012

How To Spell Family with COLEMAN

Do you know how to spell FAMILY?   I do - one of the ways I spell it is C.O.L.E.M.A.N.!

I was a kid in the 1960's.  And this Coleman thermos went with us on every single vacation that we ever took.  When that familiar green and white behemoth appeared on the kitchen table, we knew that a trip of some sort was on the horizon.  Mom would fill it with loads of ice and kool-aid, and it would get stuffed into the trunk alongside our suitcases and the picnic basket.  We'd hit the road with dad driving and mom riding shotgun, holding the map.  Most of our trips took place during the summer, so beaches and pools played a prominent role.  I guess that's why I love the water so much!

We drove up to Lake Delevan in Wisconsin during my earlier years and the Coleman thermos got carried along to the beach with us each day.  Our cottage was a couple of blocks from the water, so we'd pull on our bathing suits, roll our bathing caps into our beach towels, mom would grab the thermos, dad would handle the picnic basket and off we'd go.  We'd spend the day at the beach, leaving the water only long enough to swallow a couple of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and gulp a solo cup of nice cold kool- aid.  It was amazing how long that Coleman thermos would hold the ice.

When I got a little older we headed to Lake of the Ozarks, which involved an 8 hour drive.  After about 6 hours we'd pull over at the rest area and mom would spread the rose dappled tablecloth and pull sandwiches, pickles and brownies out of the picnic basket.  Again, that Coleman thermos would appear on the corner of the picnic table, the white spout hanging over the edge and we'd drink our fill of icy kool-aid.  I wish I had a dollar for every mile that old Coleman thermos traveled over the interstates during my formative years.

Another favorite Coleman item is this cooler......

The bottom of it has this stamp on it.....

Does that mean it was made in December of 1976?  Could I have possibly have had it that long?  Can that Coleman cooler possibly be that tough and AWESOME??  Hell yeah!  Look at it, - it has really taken a beating.....

How many miles do you think this Coleman cooler has traveled over the last 35 years??  How many beer cans, pop bottles, bags of ice, sandwiches, watermelons, and condiments do you think it has held?  If I could open the lid and let loose the memories it holds I would see the last 35 years of my life fly before my parties, camping trips, canoe excursions, road trips, birthday parties, my kids' baptisms and graduation parties, picnics and boat rides.  Geocaching, hiking, swimming, kayaking.....  My parents, my sisters, my husband, my kids, my friends....  Coleman in the trunk, in the back seat, on the deck, in the boat, strapped to the rear of the camper, on the picnic table, next to the campfire......  Talk about awesome!  It may be a little beat up, missing its handles and looking a little worn, but let me tell you, - it still performs!  Did I mention it's 35 years old??

Coleman products are reliable and dependable - just like my family.  Always there when I need them -just like my family.  And isn't that what family is really all about?

Yes, my life has been crammed with lots of family, travel and fun.  And a Coleman thermos and a Coleman Cooler have been with me every step of the way.  Yep, I know how to spell family - its COLEMAN!

“Sponsored by Coleman and hosted by the Outdoor Blogger Network, this is my submission for the Coleman Camping Heritage Essay Contest.”

Thank You to Coleman for bringing such an amazing contest and opportunity to the entire Outdoor Blogging Community!


  1. That was fantastic! Coleman products and family do go hand in hand don't they?! You brought tears to my eyes.

    We have a Coleman cooler that we got for a wedding gift in 1981 and we still use it. It's 31 years old this year! It has been everywhere with our family.

  2. One of your best posts yet. I love camping memories. Too bad I didn't have the foresight to hang on to all my Coleman stuff. I love the vintage Coleman & it keeps things colder than the new-fangled stuff we buy today.

  3. This is great! Hope you win!

    Yep, my family used a lot of Coleman products when I was a kid growing up.

  4. what a great post, Kim! I hope you win!!

  5. You write awesomely and if there is a way to vote for your contribution let me know!!

    When I was growing up we had the same cooler, but it was green. Wish I still had brings back a lot of good memories for me. Damn it...your posts like this make me realize how much I've cheated my kids. Time to plan SOMETHING??!!

  6. I think our family had those exact thermos and cooler too. Camping trip memories! Along with the Coleman stove and lantern and...
    xo Cathy

  7. We had that thermos also...we always traveled cross country with butter sandwiches and cold fried chicken...and that thermos was always there too!! Can't remember what it had in it...lemonade I think!!

    You get my made everyone think back to simple times...something we should all do a lot more often!! Good Luck Kim!!

  8. AWK! We had both of these growing up too! Except our chest cooler was green. Oh my, you've brought back some memories now girlfriend!

  9. We had that same round thermos! My parents still have it :) It went on all our camping trips, beach days, and to our horse show competetions. :) Fun memories.


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