Do you love the idea of sleeping under the stars and making summer memories whilst camping? Or does the thought of taking the little people camping completely terrify you? People said I was crazy taking my 2.5-year twins camping, or said I should at least wait until they were much older, but the truth of the matter is; I am a lifelong camper, it’s in my blood, so I just had to give it a go and let me tell you, it IS possible!
Here are some tips to help anyone who is considering taking their twins/toddlers camping.
It’s tempting to take their entire wardrobe with you but try to limit what you take. They are going to get dirty so if you can come to terms with this idea that will help. Take a couple of sets of “campsite clothes”, joggers and sweatshirts that they can hang out at the campsite in and then when you go out change them into normal clothes. When you come back change them back. It works a charm.
Buy an electric cool box. Plug it in at home for a few hours before you head off. Make food en-mass and freeze in Tupperware before you go. When you’re ready to leave pop your veg curry and your spag bol into the cool box, plug this into your car to keep cool on your journey then take extra ice blocks and rotate these blocks between the camp freezer and your cool box. The meals will easily last 4 days. If you take a longer trip out in the car whilst camping, take the cool box and give it a blast in the car. Ours worked well for the whole 9 days and meant we could have real milk instead of UHT too.
Routine or lack of it
I’ll admit to routine being my friend. I have twins and at times it’s all that’s kept me going BUT when camping, try to just let this go. We didn’t do naps and we let the boys stay up late. We ate at all manner of strange times and the kids couldn’t have been happier. The late nights meant they slept in too most days meaning early rising was less of a problem and there is nothing nicer than toasting a marshmallow over a fire with your 2-year olds in the dark. Golden memories. It took 3 days (and that meant 3 lie-ins #parentingwin) to get them back into a routine when we got home so small price really.
Do your research and seek advice
Some of what I have learned is through trial and error, but most was from other campers and one very incredible Facebook page in particular called “Tent talk camping group UK” where the knowledge, expertise, enthusiasm and warmth of the members has quite literally bowled me over. These are people who are avid campers with a wealth of experience and top tips. If you aren’t sure ask them. Someone will know guaranteed.
I could write several other blogs in their own right on what to eat when camping with kids (healthy recipes, lunch ideas etc.), what to do when it rains, early risers, toys, what to pack (dust pan and brush is a must!) but perhaps the lovely Popitha may let me do a few follow ups if this one goes down well.
Above all else, I would say, give it a go. I can see why people are anxious and why people don’t want to take their kids camping but in all honesty my experience is that kids are a thousand times more resilient campers than adults. They love it. Kids were born to be outdoors… if you don’t you’ll never know and if you’re worried, maybe just don’t do the whole 9 days…. “mad”, they said… “all the best people are”, I replied.
If you have enjoyed this article or found it useful, take a look at CAMPING – PART TWO in our camping series HERE.
If camping isn’t right for you but you still love the thought of being outdoors, then why not give glamping a go. Here are some articles to get you thinking!
Camping with Twins is a guest post by Katie Flaxman from www.katieflaxman.co.uk
Katie Flaxman is a mother to her 2.5 year old twin boys. She lives in the Essex countryside with her husband. She is a writer, poet and children’s author who is due to release her debut children’s book later this year. Check her out at www.katieflaxman.co.uk or follow her children’s picture book blog on instagram @katieflaxmanwrites.