Oh my. I’m out of my mind! Advice anyone?

Tak

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Hi. So I realized that E doesn’t know who Smokey the bear is! She’s never been camping in any way! I had to remedy this. Basic survival skills are important. Plus, s’mores, hiking, and pretty waterfalls. I live in a gorgeous state. So we’ve reserved a spot for two nights. Covid precautions are taken. Borrowing my dad’s ten person tent so her friend can come and make it more fun. I can start a fire, use some (awful) disposable flatware, and we’re camping with real toilets. How am I going to sleep on the ground two nights! Ahhh! What have I gotten myself into?
 

Gingerbread

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Girl, I hope you got an air mattress at least! We camped every Memorial Weekend when I was coming up and even after me and my husband got married he and I still went annually, until about 6 years ago. As usual we packed everything up, drove out to the mountains, set it all up and sat there for several hours listening to our camp neighbor's infant scream. Who brings an infant camping, really....
so I looked and Stephen and he looked at me and we said, wanna go home? We packed it all back up and headed home LOL spent the long weekend with everyone thinking we were away and unreachable and we enjoyed grilling in the backyard and sleeping in our own bed with air conditioning!
That being said though, in my youth I really enjoyed camping so I'm sure E will have a blast and you will have fun enjoying it with someone who has never done it before. But those tent nights are rough on us as we get older, good luck!
BTW, after several years of not camping I finally decided to give it a go again year before last but since I'm old now I chose a nice cabin in the woods, which also had a functioning kitchen and a hot tub on the back porch LOL Highly recommend it!
 

AzaleaArt

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I’ve technically only been camping once, but it was for the entire summer when I was around 7. It was really fun! (It was also when I was first introduced to Harry Potter so that was also great :D) I’m sure E will love it too :smile:
 

OctoberMoon

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You will have fun! It will be a great experience for her. Definitely invest in an air mattress!!! I used to camp every summer with my family. From a tent when I was little to a pop up camper as I got older. We've never taken P for obvious reasons but I know he would hate it. He's not an outdoor fan of anything. I learned a lot from my dad all those years so maybe you can make a new family tradition.
 
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ActionHank

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I live out in the middle of nowhere and am always surrounded by trees and crap, why would you want to sleep out there in a tent?

I've been out there it's not that great.
 
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Skybreeze

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I camp every season at least once. As others have mentioned, investing in a good air mattress makes or breaks the trip I’ve found.

I bought mine about ten years ago on sale at Walmart. It’s a double high queen size and it’s the best purchase I’ve ever made. If you can do it, get one that’s got the pump built in. Kids are typically good on a water toy air mattress. You will need a converter that can plug into your car (they can be plugged into a cigarette lighter for older cars or the dc outlet in newer cars). Because of my mattress I often find that at least one of my friends ends up sleeping in my tent and with me on almost all my camping trips. Everyone makes fun of the girl with the big mattress until they’ve spent one night on the cold hard ground. Lol!!

I have also found that getting one of those long thin Rubbermaid storage bins is a HUGE asset for camping (I actually have two now got both on sale at Walmart too). My initial purchase was to pack my tent and ground tarps in it. It’s great because at the end of the trip you can literally toss everything in and you don’t have to be too worried about neatly folding when the bottoms all muddy or full of bugs/slug slime. Then just take it all out and hose down when home allow to dry and repack neatly for the next trip. I also use a second one to pack all my gear in, so my flints, ropes, camping stove (in case we don’t get fries going because of wet grounds), cutlery, TP, food that doesn’t need to be cold, bag with clothes, etc. Having a small car and being able to pack these two things and go have been great. It saves SO much space and I can still pile stuff on top, usually the dog’s things and friends tents or stuff.

Otherwise E and her friend will have a great time. Obviously, hotdog “octopus” are a must, along with pop corn on the fire and s’mores. Obviously, lots of things to do at the site is a must when camping with pre-teens and teens, a few good books too. Enjoy your time spent in nature, it’s always so peaceful and it’s always the best sleep I get.

I also forgot, a good pro tip before your trip. Get your Dad to show you how to assemble the tent (with E there). That way you can allow the tent to air out some and see if it requires any patches. I also like to buy a couple cans of tent water proofing spray and spray along all the seams of the tents. This repels water and morning dew from getting into the tent. Again, this has saved what could’ve been awful camping trips. Yes, there’s been a lot where it’s rained a lot on our trips.
 
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