Okay, so when you are camping the best way to enjoy yourself and teach your children to enjoy themselves is to keep it simple. However, there are a few items that I've found very key to my enjoyment and that of my children. Most of these items are very inexpensive and you may already have some. Remember, we enjoy certain items when we go places, so do our kids.
The Kid List:
- Headlamp/flashlight--Your child will love his/her own headlamp. You can get these for under $10 at places like Wal-mart, etc. Or appoint one of the extra flashlights you already have as your child's. You can put stickers on it to make it seem special.
- Books--Needed for rainy/cold weather when you need to be inside the tent. Check out books that have to do with nature/camping/the outdoors.
- Baby Wipes (preferably the ones with a fresh fragrance)--These are key for the no-shower wipe downs you'll need to do before naps, bedtime, mealtime, etc. They're even handy for adults.
- Glue--You can easily collect nature items to make collages, pinecone people, etc. Nature provides endless opportunities. (More on our camp crafting in tomorrow's post.) Also consider bringing paper, crayons or other art supplies that are small and pack easily. I created a camp crafts box, in which I put a number of items I thought might be useful for a little creative distraction.
- Small backpack--I found one last year at Wal-Mart that came with a mini baby doll. Consider gathering a few toys from around the house that you designate as "camp toys," meaning you don't care if they get dirty or beat up from camp wear and tear.
- Suncreen and bug spray--enough said.
- Chair--We picked up this kid-size camp chair for about $7 at Wal-Mart. Any chair will work and it helps prevent the constant state of sitting in the dirt/mud. Plus, kids just love miniature furniture that's just their size.
- Small Gathering Basket--This item is key for collecting treasures when you go on walks hikes. Let your child fill it with items to use in fairy house construction and nature collages.