My husband and I have always loved camping. When we started to think about having a family, we'd talk about how much fun it was going to be to take our kids camping. Once they were born, we talked about waiting until they could walk, so it'd be easier on baby hands and knees. But now we don't really now when Drake will walk, so we decided to just take them camping anyway.
Sooo....we took them on their first car camping trip last weekend and it was (pretty much) a smashing success!
I did almost want to back out once I started to over-think the logistics. They have never slept in anything other than a crib or pack n play, and now we were going to ask them to share a tent and sleep on the ground? I figured naps were going to be non-existent, since it would be blazing hot in a tent mid-afternoon. And what about Drake and crawling around a campsite full of dirt, rocks and sticks?
But, we pushed through and went.
The drive was about 4 hours, and we stopped mid-way for food and diaper changes. They were great in the car -- napping, eating and "reading" books.
We got there and set up our site and the kids had a blast playing in the tent, rolling around in the sleeping bags, etc. I put Drake in a pair of hefty pants w/ reinforced knees and let him explore his new world. Did he get dirty as all hell? Yes. Did he love it? Yes.
They did amazingly well sleeping in the tent, too. We put down an air mattress that filled the whole floor of the tent, put them in their PJs and warm sleep sacks and said good-night. They cried a little at first, confused why they were shut into this tent by themselves, but quickly just started playing together and chatting and after a half hour or so, conked out, cuddled up together! I crawled into their tent to sleep with them when I went to bed. I was worried they'd wake up scared in the middle of the night. But they did great!
The next day, we put them in backpacks and went for a hike, then spent the afternoon on a sandy beach by a mountain lake. They loved the lake, of course. They are getting so confident in water. Both love being dunked completely underwater and are learning to hold their breath when they go under.
There were no naps as I suspected, but they were having so much fun being outside and seeing new things, that they didn't seem any worse for the wear. They were practically at home in the sleeping tent the second night (or just exhausted!) and we did another hike to a river the second day.
Then we came home, tired and dirty, but so happy that we made it through our first family camping trip and had fun doing it, too!
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