Weekends can feel like work if you don’t have a plan, but you have kids to entertain. If the idea of camping sounds fantastic, but the chaos of packing the car, kids and all, is just more than you can handle, we have the perfect solution. Backyard Camping.
The checklist is short and sweet. And if you forget something on the list below, no need to stress, backyard camping is 90% about improvising. Get ready to put in minimal effort for maximum reward, because the kids are about to be self entertained until well past bedtime. Worst case, if you have forgotten something, it’s a few feet away and that includes a full refrigerator, bathroom and a solid roof if the weather turns.
Backyard Camping Checklist
1. The Tent
The size of tent you need depending on the amount of kids you are entertaining. In my case, a four man tent is perfect for two wild seven year olds. A blow up mattress and a few layers of pillows and blankets will make the perfect fort.
2. Mosquito Repellent
Prevention is better than cure. Let each kids wear a mosquito bracelet or two or spray them down with a child safe repellent so the next few days are not a reminder of their outdoor adventure. If it becomes a bigger problem, you could also install Yellow Bug Lights and Insect Zappers in your backyard.
3. Grilled Nacho Dinner
Dinner will take a little preparation on your part, but when it’s time to eat, the kids can step in to make their own meal. All they need is a sheet of aluminium foil, a handful of tortilla chips placed in the center. They can then add their choice of mince, beans, avocado and grated cheese. Create a pouch by folding in the corners of the foil. Stick the parcels in the oven for a few minutes until cheese has melted. They can then go and enjoy their delicious, self made meal outside.
3. Marshmallows and Snacks
No camp-out is complete without marshmallows. In my case, a campfire was not an option so here’s my plan “B”. Warm up a bowl of caramel or chocolate in the microwave, and the little campers can dip marshmallows and cookies to their hearts content.
4. Ball Games
Before it gets dark, there are several ball games that will help wear out those limitless energy levels. Whether it’s soccer, Tetherball or Bocce Ball, they’ll be having buckets of fun.
5. Flashlight and Treasure Hunts
Start by hiding some treats in the garden. When it starts getting darker, send the kids out for an exciting treasure hunting.
I am a big fan or simple and this affordable little staycation is a huge hit with the kids. All the while, you get to supervise, stress free from the comfort of your lounge. They will sleep well, even if they end up back in their beds after telling one too may ghost stories.