A few months ago I wrote a blog post about preparing to go camping with your kids. Well, my family and I finally made it to the great outdoors this past weekend. In fact, as I write this, I’m sitting by a roaring fire under a black sky lit up with more stars than you could ever count, and my wife and kids are snuggled up in our tent.
It’s been a fun experience so far – my four year old wanted me to teach her how to use an ax to chop wood and help with the preparation of the fire. I was very proud, but I’m not sure that four and two are the ideal ages for campers. As it got dark, and after s’mores were enjoyed, we put the kids down for sleep. Fortunately, my oldest was now totally over her happiness of the camping experience which only hours earlier she was singing songs about – She wanted to go home. And the little guy believed the air mattress was a bouncy house. It was late and the camp is about two hours north of the city, so I was in no mood to pack up the car and head home. So we calmed her down, and no doubt she’ll want to stay longer tomorrow when it’s time to leave.
The little guy, was tired but he needed a late night walk to tire him out… so we took a long tour of the camp grounds, and then I delivered him into his mom’s waiting arms. So two problems resolved – nothing I can’t handle.
When planning this trip, I had to decide between roughing it or “not so much.” I chose the latter route. We decided on a KOA campground, because of the amenities. They offered a pool, a bounce house, hay rides, mini golf, movies under the stars, paddle boats, tubing, and several other activities (similar to a camp). The abundance of activities made filling the day for our kids really easy, and really fun.
As I reflect, I realize I learned a lot on this trip. You pack much differently when you have kids with you and it’s always a good time for a sno-cone! And despite a few rough patches, my kids really enjoyed the camping experience like their passionate father, and will want to do this again soon.