Camping with Young Kids

This weekend we went camping with Buddy’s Cub Scout Pack at a local park. We had a lot of fun. I wish I would have taken more photos, but I used this time to unplug from everything electronic.

My husband used to be a big outdoors man. He used to work with troubled kids at a place that took them outside, so he’s spent weeks backpacking, hiking and canoeing in the wilderness. We used to go camping and hiking as well. And, then I got pregnant. Lots of people keep on doing those things, but they weren’t as ingrained into our lifestyle and took a back seat. We started thinking about camping again when Buddy turned 3, and then I got pregnant with Sassafras.

So here we are, with Sass now 3, taking our kids camping for the first time. We pulled out our tent, which we hadn’t seen put up in years, a few days before we went camping. It’s a 4 person 4 weather tent, which translates to small and hot. On Tuesday, when it was 90 degrees and at 7 p.m. you were sweating just standing, we put it together in the yard. And promptly decided we needed a bigger one.

My hubby researched his little heart out and picked a nice one with a room divider from REI. It was fun seeing him get into the camping again, it had been so long. We really liked the tent. It had lots of pockets for odds and ends. I liked the two rooms, it gave the kids a defined space in which to toss their clothes around. The divider opened for air flow as well. We were all very happy with it until a thunderstorm rolled through a bit after midnight. The tent has a rain flap, but it doesn’t cover one end, so we had water coming in. For the hubby, that was enough, and he took it back, which we were both sad about because otherwise, we really liked it. But the last think you want is staying in a flooded tent, especially with kids.

The kids had a great time being outside. They loved sleeping in the tent. Playing outside was great for them. We brought coloring books and games, which got a lot of use. The games were a big hit with all of the kids. I think Buddy played chess with every adult there. The kids spent lots of time running around and being active.

Besides some kids who were too late way too late (I think 2 a.m. is extremely late for kids in grades 1-5) – and one really loud snorer who actually forced me to go home to sleep the second night – it was a great weekend. We were only a few miles from home, which was great when going out for the first time with small kids. I only went home the second night to sleep (I’ll bring ear plugs next time) and the hubby ran home to take care of some work, but the kids were at the campground the entire time. It was a great first time for them. In fact, they can’t wait to go again. I forsee a tent in the backyard in the near future.

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