Do you ever have grand plans and to-do lists with wonderful things on them but don’t get around to doing them? Well, life is like that sometimes and really, life just needs to be lived so you have something to write about.
So we took Serafina (10 months old now) camping with two of her friends who are 2-and-a-half and 5 months old. Yup. 3 kids under 3.
People might have thought we were CRAZY but
4 adults + 3 kiddos + 2 dogs = 1 awesome camping adventure.
So…how did we do it?
1) We had our food chopped and prepped ahead of time. That way, we didn’t have to spend time messing with food once we got to the campsite and could just throw it on the fire, put together sandwiches, etc. We had more hands on kiddos rather than needing to have more of us helping with the food.
2) Bring the right gear. One of the things we had that really helped was a “kid container.” Okay, you might think we were being cruel by putting them in a mesh cage but it kept the bugs away from them and it gave us time to be kid-free and do things like chop wood (boys) and pump water (girls). Plus, they love playing with each other (see the video) so this was a way to let them do that and not get dirty. We also each had kid-carrying backpacks that made our hikes easier. Yes, they’re expensive but we bought ours with REI dividends from using our REI VISA…
3) Bring those strap-on high chairs. You can set them on the ground on a tarp and not worry about the kids tipping over off the picnic bench or have to hold them in your laps which means you can eat too!
4) Have patience. Have patience. Don’t be in such a hurry (anyone else singing the rest of the song in their head?). We went on a hike Saturday morning and were planning on going for another one that afternoon but naps occurred so we went the next morning. And that was okay! Have patience.
5) Have fun. Duh, right? Well, if you get all uptight, your kid(s) will too. So play in the river. Wrestle with the dogs. Play cards and have them “help” you add up your cribbage hand.
6) Choose the right company. The more you surround yourself with people who are relaxed, flexible, and willing to take on a challenge like this, the better time you will have. We love these camping partners and can’t wait for our next trip!!! Oh, the first of many…and we’re already plotting our first backpacking *gasp* outing with all 3 kids…we really might be insane…
And here’s the trip report I posted on WTA…if you live and hike in Washington, you really should become a member and support this awesome organization that helps maintain our trail system!