Over the years Americans have fallen in love with the great outdoors. Movies idealize camping weekends and parents share stories with their children about childhood trips into the wild unknown. Camping is a great family activity and it offers a fun way to spend more time together and to learn more about nature. However there are several things that need to be considered before packing up the car and heading into the woods. Camping is going to require that you have everything in order and prepared. One of the biggest issues that many people face when trying to decide if camping is right for them is whether or not they should take the kids. Dont miss out on all the fun your family can enjoy by camping together! Just remember Ms. Preppers 7 important rules for camping with your kids.
1. Always Have Enough Bedding
Sleeping in the great outdoors might seem romantic and sweet in the movies, but the reality can be much different. The ground is hard, the tent can be cramped, the weather could turn without warning, and the animal noises could drive you crazy. This is why you need to have as much bedding as possible. Make sure you pack at least one pillow per person, one sleeping bag per person, and either an eggshell foam mattress or an air mattress. While you would like to keep the trip as simple as possible, when the kids are comfy and cozy, the parents are not kept up all night listening to children complain about the sleeping conditions.
2. Bring Plenty of Food
While you might have a grand idea of catching your own fish and then serving the catch of the day, there is always an unforeseen issue that arises. You might be the best fisherman the world has ever known but from time to time, the fish do not bite. Do not rely only on your fishing equipment. Take some additional supplies such as hotdogs, chips, canned meat, etc. make sure that you are prepared for anything that might go wrong and you will never be left scratching your head.
3. Plan for Entertainment
Parents love the idea of camping because it offers a chance to unplug from the grid and enjoy a few nights of peace and quiet. Kids however are not that easy. The children are going to want to explore the woods and play games. If you are going camping with your kids then you need to take a few games with you. A deck of cards is always a great option as well as a few board games. You might even try camping in a family camping center that offers water recreation or even miniature golf.
4. Keep First Aid Supplies Handy
Injuries happen. From the cut finger to the burns from the campfire, you need to be prepared for at least one person to come crying to you about an injury. While you might have watched every episode of MacGyver, you are not capable of delivering first aid without a good emergency kit. Make sure that you pack band-aids, antiseptic cream, bandages, and gauze. You can never be too careful.
5. Make Fire Safety a Priority
No campsite is complete without a fire. The fire is important for many reasons. First, it offers a way to cook your food and to boil your water. Second, it helps to deter animals from entering your campsite. However fire is also very dangerous, especially for small kids. Take the time to educate your kids about the dangers of a fire. Do not leave the fire unattended and never allow your kids to use the fire without you around.
6. Pack Fresh Water
While your body can function without a lot of food, it cannot operate without water. Water is the key to life. Do not try to drink straight from the pond or river that you are camping around. While the water can be boiled to help clean it, it is not a good idea to take this approach. Always take enough water for everyone. This means you will need to pack a cooler with several flats of water bottles.
7. Choose a Large, Comfortable Tent
Your tent is going to be your home for the next few nights. While the sales person at Wal-Mart might suggest that the 4-person tent is all you will need, never fall for this advice. Spend the extra money and purchase a larger tent. You will be glad to have the extra room and this will allow you to have some separation from the kids.