The difference between camping before kids and after kids is….. well I am not sure the two can be compared…
My husband and I love to camp – I wouldn’t call us avid campers, but I hope to be an avid camper someday!
I still pack way too much and worry I won’t have something essential that I need (especially when going with the kids).
- We would set out with a general idea of where we wanted to camp and find the place that was perfect
- We would enjoy the sounds of rushing water in nearby creeks or rivers
- I would stay warm by the fire
- We’d splurge on smores and beer after dinner and sleep cozily in our large tent!
- We go to places that we have been and are familiar with to know how kid safe it is
- We enjoy the sounds of BooBoo not crying and Bizz not yelling about something
- I worry about the kids staying warm throughout the night and constantly wake up and check their blankets
- We make sure the kids stay away from the fire so no one trips into it – therefore usually I am sitting far enough back that I can’t feel the warmth of it
- and I splurge on leftover cheerios that didn’t fall on the ground and maybe a drink of warm leftover apple juice 😉
Truthfully – I LOVE camping with my children, I love the experience I am giving them at such an early age and that we are lucky enough to be able to do these things as a family!
And it amazes me how many people are always surprised and almost congratalatory to us for camping with our children. Every single time we have gone camping as a family I have been approached by an older person who has asked something along the lines of How can I convince my son/daughter to take their young children camping? It is such a great expereience – look you are doing it! I never really know how to respond except to say it is a lot of work, but for me it is worth it and the fun overrides the work!
There are some things you have to be prepared for though:
I don’t mind my kids getting dirty – Dirt don’t hurt! And they WILL get
dirty filthy when camping! Just bring lots of washclothes or baby wipes – and don’t worry about cleaning their feet – just put socks on at bedtime 🙂
Bedtime, as you know it, isn’t going to happen. Just let them stay up on your laps next to the fire for as long as they want! It is quality time like nothing else! If they fall asleep in your arms even better! Bring some comfort items from home (fave book, blanky, sleepybear) to help if needed, and be sure to have a nightlight of some sort if they need it in the tent!
I LOVE the joy on Bizz’s face as he gets to explore and find new bugs or branches, and especially this year as he gets to be Daddy’s helper in collecting firewood and setting up camp!
And – You will have to have smores after dinner, and possibly after breakfast and lunch as well if you keep the fire going – and I am all for that 🙂
What is your best or worst camping story, tip or experience?