Once our tent was up we made it cosy with bunting, tables, chairs, camp kitchen, blankets, blow up beds, duvets, lanterns, fairy lights, tea lights...you name it, we probably took it to make our camp glamp!
We have camped countless times with the children now and with a bit of planning and careful packing camping holidays can be excellent. Edith has reached the age of wanting to go to the toilet block on her own and, despite bending the rule of 'no unaccompanied children in the toilets' that most campsites have, we let her do it. She's a sensible girl and I see this as developing her independence and safety awareness skills. The two of them would sneak to the park unaccompanied too! Yes, we were that family that lets their children run riot! Seriously though, they were closely monitored by us at all times.
I always research campsites before booking them and tend to look for something with less than 40 pitches, a play area, plenty of tent space and not dominated by the caravans, ice pack and washing up facilities, NO bar or entertainment complex - personal choice for camping, nice surrounding area and good reviews! A good starting point is ukcampsites.co.uk and the Cool Camping guidebooks.
I also make lists, LOTS of lists and will check them, and check them again!
Here is what my camping list currently looks like:
Tent/Tent poles/Canopy/Canopy Poles/Mallet/Tent pegs inc. storm pegs/Claw hammer for hard ground
2 camping tables
4 camping chairs
Camping Gas Camping Chef Stove and Grill / Gas canisters
Camping crockery/Cutlery/Can opener/Bottle opener/Mugs/Cups/Water bottles/Chopping boards/Frying pan/Saucepan
Coolbox & Ice blocks
Blow up beds and foot pump
Washing up bowl/Trug/Fairy Liquid/Washing up sponges/T-Towels
Towels/Hand towels/Beach towels
Food/Milk/Water/Tea bags & sugar
Magazines/Games/Toys/Rabbit & Cuthbert the bear
Once you have managed to squeeze that lot in the car then you are pretty much good to go and have some great outdoor camping fun with the kiddies. Leave your stresses at home and ENJOY!!
x x x