Sometimes you need a change of scenery. A way to leave it all behind and take some time away from home base and experience each other. It is one way to create a little celebration in your every day homeschool life.
We started camping with our kids when they were infants. I actually think it is the perfect vacation for little ones. Lots of fun without a lot of pressure!
Here are my top tips for having a great camping trip with kids!
- First Aid. Make sure you have a sensible first aid kit. Band-aids, hydrogen peroxide, burn cream, bandages, ace bandage, butterfly closures, fever reducer, q-tips, cotton balls, tick removal tool and tweezers all smart and important things to have handy! Also I recommend making sure they are in a waterproof bag. Things get wet when you are camping you don’t want your first aid kit to be a victim.
- The Glop: Bug repellant, aloe vera, mineral based sunscreen and hats. All important. Protect yourself from the sun you will thank me! Also remember 10-4 is the peak for sun burns so take shade breaks.
- Zip Lock bags. You will use them in a thousand ways. You will always be glad you packed them. It doesn’t have to be fancy but you will need them so just trust me!
- Rags I find even the heartiest paper towel doesn’t always cut it camping. We use a bunch of rags. They don’t have to be fancy, just serviceable. Great and easy for clean up.
- A clothesline. Things get wet when you are camping. Planning a clothesline is a must. It keeps the wet towels out of your tent and everything much happier!
- Layer it Up! Even if the forecast is for super warm temperatures. Always bring your layers. I always have a short sleeve, long sleeve fleece, shorts and pants at minimum for each day. It is also wise to invest in rain gear. That can get pricy so ponchos at the low end to a nice rain jacket at the upper end. But it keeps everyone much more comfortable! Also don’t forget an extra pair of shoes. I have it was a mistake.
- Toddler/baby gear! I think a camping chair per person is a great idea toddlers included. And don’t forget a water bottle for the little ones. If you are camping at the beach some sort of shade tent/wagon/contraption is really helpful. They just cannot be in the sun like the older kids can. For babies we always brought the bouncy chair. It is like a camping chair for babies! And don’t forget the layers for babies and toddlers. I know I said it before but it is much more difficult for them to regulate their body heat so layers are key!
- A tarp: always put a tarp under your tent. Always. If you don’t you will get wet. Also tarps are just useful at a campsite. We have often rigged one up when it rains. It is just useful. I always suggest an extra tarp!
- Flashlights, a lamp glow sticks. Camping gets dark. One easy way to know where your kids are all the time when it gets dark is to put a glowstick on them. They are happy and you know where they are!
- Camp stove they are easy and relatively inexpensive. It gives you a back up for when you are in need of food quickly before you can prepare the fire. You can also consider your crock pot or instant pot if you site has electricity. It is so nice to have a crock pot on simmer all day and come back to the camp site ready to eat!
Final Thought. Your kid is going to get dirty! It is just going to happen. Embrace the dirt. Love the dirt. The dirt is your friend. Think of all the immunity you are building up!