SOCIAL MEDIA

Friday, April 12, 2019

5 Must-Haves When Camping with Toddlers

This was our second time camping as a family of 4 and it went really well! You can read about our first time here. We headed home planning our next trip, which means no one was traumatized. I'd say that's a win. With that being said, these are the top 5 things that made our camping trip with toddlers a success.



1. Large, waterproof tent: We bought our tent a few years ago with the idea that we'd grow into it. We have this 10-person tent and love it! We currently only use about 1/3-1/2 of it for sleeping purposes and the rest for a playroom. We encourage our kiddos to be outside as much as possible while we're camping, but we were so grateful for this extra space when it rained. This tent is large enough for a queen sized air mattress, a travel crib, all our "stuff", and an area for at least 3 kids to play with toys and run around a bit. This was a lifesaver.

2. Snacks: We went through so many bags of Goldfish crackers, applesauce pouches, and granola bars. The next time we go camping I plan on having a large bin of snacks that don't have to be refrigerated. I don't know about you, but when I'm on vacation I don't want to stress about cooking or cleaning when I don't want to. This made it so easy to get food in their bellies the moment they were hungry. Not all parents are into letting their kiddos snack, but that's all we were about while camping. 

3. Play clothes/feet pajamas: Right before we went camping I condensed the kids' dressers down to one so we had a bunch of "extra" clothes. I tried to create capsule wardrobes for each of them and then I packed the other clothes for camping. I stressed out 0% about them ruining their clothes. It was so great! The only clothes I packed that were not "extra" clothes were pajamas with feet. These are so wonderful while camping because you can put your kiddos in them after bathing them (if you do this while camping) and not worry about them getting all dirty again. Well, you do have to wipe down their hands and face before bed, but the rest of their bodies stay squeaky clean. 

4. Unique activities: Not only did I pack some fun, unique activities for the kids, but my mom did too. I gave the kids their scavenger hunt bags almost the moment we got there. They were wonderful at keeping the kiddos busy while we set up camp. I just took a paper bag from Trader Joe's and stapled this scavenger hunt list I found online to the front of it. I also put a few gardening tools in each one to aid them in their digging endeavors. This kept them busy for at least an hour. We brought some toys from home but they gravitate to the activities that they don't get to do on a normal day. 

5. Kid-sized camping chairs: The moments sitting around the campfire can be so precious and also a little stressful. Even though these chairs didn't completely take the stress away, they definitely helped. The kids were a bit more stable getting in and out of chairs they actually fit in. Plus, it really seemed like all the kiddos felt special having a specific chair that was his/hers. Our son, who is almost 2, carried his chair wherever he went around the campsite. It was so precious! We bought ours at Walmart but there are a ton on Amazon, too. 

Bonus: You can't purchase this last bonus must-have, but if at all possible, bring grandparents! Having my parents with us was so helpful and fun for many reasons. Firstly, our kiddos love all of their grandparents (maternal and paternal) and secondly, extra hands are helpful. There is no way around that. Plus, they have an RV. Hello, easier potty breaks & dishwashing. Oh, and they have a portable DVD player. Our kids definitely took advantage of this every night.

Did I miss something? What has worked for you?

Also, if you like this post, please Pin it!

13 comments :

  1. Saved to my pintrest camping board-awesome insight! We definitely ordered Z a camping chair for this summer. Love the scavenger hunt-any other outdoor games and activities that are easy to pack?

    -Amanda G.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amanda, sand toys for the dirt, collecting rocks in an egg carton, coloring over leaves, catching bugs...we kind of gave them some tools (sand toys, buckets, bug catcher, etc.) and let nature guide them. With this mindset, we obviously didn't care about them getting dirty. Oh, and balls. We saw play trucks in the campground across from us. This is something I want to do next time. What have you found works for you? XOXO Lindsey

      Delete
  2. These are awesome tips. We have been delaying camping with our kids because I fear it will be pure chaos!! You're brave!
    Elizabeth - Tired Mom Supermom

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elizabeth, I get you! I had some anxiety on the way and while we were camping but once we got there my mindset was all about wanting my kids to have a positive experience in nature so I just let things go. They definitely ate dirt, went to bed dirty, and consumed way too many granola bars, but they want to go back! I'd say it was a win. Thanks for your honesty! XOXO Lindsey

      Delete
  3. These are such great tips girl! I love your idea of bringing the grandparents, it also just adds such a personal touch that will create lasting memories for years to come! I love camping, especially here in Maine, it's absolutely gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Laura, is there a good time to camp in Maine? We kind of can make anytime of year work if we want to here in Southern California. The beauty is the best part! Waking up to fresh air is just the best! XOXO Lindsey

      Delete
  4. That is an amazing tent! And I love the idea of the scavenger hunt, that sounds like a lot of fun for the kiddos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Becky, they had a blast! Kids don't need a lot for that to happen...XOXO Lindsey

      Delete
  5. This sounds like so much fun! I haven't been camping in years but I think it might be time to plan a trip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    2. Girl! go camping! Haha. As if it were that easy. Thanks for reading! XOXO Lindsey

      Delete
  6. so many great tips! Snacks!! Ahh whenever I hike I always forget to pack enough so it's a good reminder for camping lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Racehl, snacks are life. Sometimes literally. I always forget wipes...it's a disaster! We'd be a sight together. Lol. XOXO Lindsey

      Delete