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Tent Camping with Kids
Tent Camping with Kids
The most important tip in having a successful camping trip with kids is to Plan, Plan, Plan. You must start by researching everything you can about where you are going. The internet is a parents best friend. Having a checklist for every aspect of your trip will make sure you have everything you need and that nothing gets left at home. I made four lists: camping equipment, clothing, food and entertainment.
When researching where your going to be camping. I looked at what amenities the campground had available and picked a site closest to what I felt was important, bathrooms, water and the playground. I also looked to see if they had any events or festivals planned during our trip.
My first list outlined what camping equipment we needed to bring. Your list may be tweaked depending on where you are camping and the age of your children.
- Tent and Tarp
- Air Mattress and Pump
- Sheets(I put a fitted sheet over ours so we don't stick), sleeping bags and pillows
- Camp Grill and fuel
- Picnic Blanket
- Extension Cords
- Box Fan (helps keep the tent cool so much)
- Bug Spray and Sunscreen
The next list is clothing. Camping requires lots of clothes, since you can get dirty or wet so quickly, its always better to have more than you need.
- Double the amount of outfits as days you will be camping for each camper(camping 3 days = 6 outfits)
- Long pants and jackets for each camper
- Undergarments and diapers for each camper
- At least 2 pairs of shoes for each camper with extra socks (please make them closed toed shoes, no sandals, its just not safe for camping)
- Shower shoes for each camper along with hygeine items (toothbrushes, shampoo, soap)
- Shower and Beach Towels for each camper
- Swimming attire for each camper
My Camping Suggestions
I then moved on to the food list. I pack two coolers(one for drinks the other for food) and then put all non refridgerated items in a plastic tote. I also have a seperate tote of all the cooking utensils needed to prepare the meals. This again takes some pre menu planning. I love to cook, so I of course wanted to try something new. I discovered pie irons for this trip and researched many great recipes. But since I was trying something different, I also brought along the good old standbys, hot dogs and cheddarwurst for us. Your list will vary greatly from mine according to your menu. Just be sure to plan out your menu and write out everything you need to make each dish. You must think about what you can do in advance at home to make cooking easier while camping. I made sloppy joes and tacos in the pie irons, I browned and seasoned my meat at home and then froze it in ziploc bags before we left. This way it defrosted in the cooler while helping keep everything else cool.
- Drinks for everyone (be sure to have non carbonated options too to keep everyone hydrated)
- Camping Menu with all ingriedents listed
- Plenty of snacks for all ages
- Utensil Box (foil, spatulas, tongs, paper plates, plastic forks and spoons, paper towels, dish soap, non stick spray, small tub to wash dished in, etc)
The last list was for entertainment. You have to have plenty of things for everyone to do, boredom leads to bad behavior and then someone will get hurt. Be Creative!!
- Sand Toys (Bucket, shovel, dump truck, etc)
- Glow sticks or necklaces
- Bikes, roller skates, or scooter
- Coloring Books and Crayons (in case you get rained in, we did)
- Frisbee and Balls (whichever sport your family prefers)
This, of course, is not the end all be all list for camping with kids, but I hope it gets you thinking in the right direction. The most important thing is to have fun!!! No matter what happens your building lasting memories with your family. Even if it turns out to be a disaster, it will be a trip no one will forget!