24 July 2012

Packing for Camp(ing)

Dear Lissy,

We dropped you off at summer camp yesterday for the first time.  You've been planning and packing for weeks, and nearly died from excitement when you saw your little cabin.  While it's still fresh in my mind, I wanted to remind you how we pack for camp/camping.

A clothes pack with outfits packed together in separate Ziploc bags.
I like to pack whole outfits into a single, waterproof bag.  When you press out the air, the clothes pack down far smaller than they normally do in luggage.  You can also easily toss one waterproof pack of clothing in your bathhouse pack or bring one on a day trip, too.  I started this when you were littles, but it's so convenient we do it all the time now.
* We always pack or wear a pair of water shoes since those don't require socks and work well for rainy days and wet activities.
* Pack both a wet and dry laundry bag and clearly label both.  Encourage your kids not to put anything wet in the bag until the last day of camp/camping -- keep it on a clothesline or hook instead.
* Toss a few spare batteries for flashlights into the clothes pack.

A bathhouse pack with toiletries and towels
Always, always, always pack a separate bag for the bathhouse so they're not juggling armloads of toiletries, towels, and fresh clothing.  It's so much easier for a kid to just grab a backpack and go.  I usually use one that's waterproof or at least water resistant.
* A t.p. supply can be iffy at a public campground, so pack a travel roll in the pack for emergencies.
* Hand sanitizer is a nice extra if the soap or sinks are too high or out of product.
* Quarters for showers and laundry should be included in this pack.
***Don't forget to pack a handful of clothespins!***

An activities pack
Whether you're sending your kiddos off to summer camp or just hanging at a campground, pack a small activity pack.  For this week, yours included your Bible, notebooks, pens & pencils, flashlight, rain poncho, money, and water bottle.  For camping, we'd include sunscreen, bug dope and a whistle, but keep the Bible in your regular luggage.  I tend to pack a family bag for the beach or pool rather than have each kid carry their own.

Thoughts on labeling
If you're going to be in a summer camp where everyone is "safe," we put your name on the outside of the packs and your wallet.
If we're camping, kids' names are on the inside so a stranger doesn't learn your name just by looking at your pack.

I can't wait to pick you up Saturday and hear all about your week!  It's awfully quiet around here.


Linked up at Works for Me Wednesday

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