Saturday, 18 June 2011

Camping - The essentials...well, sort of!

A friend who is braving a camping trip with me and my boys in mid July has asked what she might need so here is the list I came up with...feel free to comment if you think I've missed anything!
I LOVE camping but I do like to have a few home comforts around to make it feel cosy. So my list is roughly in order of importance...i.e. it starts with a tent and ends with solar powered fairy lights!

A tent – we just got a new one as I have been borrowing or making do with a tiny one and I have finally convinced Ed that I really do love camping and it really will be a worthwhile investment.
A mallet – and a few spare tent pegs.
Camp beds or mattresses – We have always used the self inflating mattresses before now, however, I don’t think they are that great for kids as sleeping bags are slippery and the mattresses are slippery and the children end up in a corner of the tent. So this year we have all got beds so we’ll see how it goes.
Sleeping bags & plenty of blankets – Even in midsummer it can get freezing cold at night (or in the middle of the day!) so a sleeping bag is essential especially for children who might kick off covers. You will also need extra blankets plus thick socks and dressing gowns. If you have been camping in England before you will know I am not exaggerating. Maybe you won’t need this much stuff but then again you just might!
Pillows from home – a comfort essential.
Lantern & torch – The camping lanterns you can get are really good particularly the LED ones which last forever and some come with a little remote. I just got this one from eBay ‘Adventuridge LED Camping Lantern with Remote Control’ for £12.50 incl postage. A torch is also useful for late night trips to the loo.
Potty, loo roll and wet wipes – if you have children!
Camping chairs and picnic rug
Camping stove – got to be able to make a cuppa.
BBQ & charcoal – disposable ones are fine but you may need to find bricks or stones to put them on. For a few years we have had a notebook BBQ. They are really good as you can also make a fire in them in the evenings. These are widely available on web.
Logs, kindling, firelighters – Call me a cheat but I like to KNOW I have everything I need for a fire. I’m not a pyro but I really do love a fire. So cosy, warming and hypnotic mmmm...where was I?
Cooking items – Kettle, pans, mugs, glasses, tin opener, bottle opener, tongs, wooden spoon, cutlery, plates and bowls, matches.
Washing up items – Washing up bowl (in the camping shops they are diddy but actually there is usually quite a bit of washing up so a full size one is better, washing up liquid, scourer, dishcloth.
Coolbox with ice packs or car fridge – if you like your beer or milk very cold the coolbox fridge that you can plug into the car occasionally is a good idea but not essential for a short trip.
Table – for your cups of tea or glasses of wine.
Children’s table – We got this one the other day. It has the seats attached and folds up. My children are messy eaters at the best of times but eating beans on a picnic rug, well it would be ineffective and also disgusting. It can be used by adults too but the cheaper ones like mine are not really suitable. There are loads available on the web.
Wellies & Woolies – socks and jumpers that is. Get’s cold at night and you wouldn’t want to miss out on those late night campfire sing songs now would you!
Car phone charger & fully charged camera battery
Tablecloth – it’s homely and cosy and draws admiring people in for a nice cuppa and a chat. Honest.
Doormat & dustpan & brush– if you take pride in your tent!!
Flagpole & flag – if you like to mark your territory or celebrate your holiday!
Bunting – It’s cheery.
Solar Fairylights – Ditto.
Food and drink – The last thing you want to do when you have just got set up, particularly if you’re only going for a few days,  is to have to go food shopping. No, I like to take a few foody bits and at least one slap up meal and then pick up the rest from the local farm shops etc. So my food list looks like this in no particular order:

  • Cheeseballs (the only item on the entire camping list suggested by Ed! He loves a cheap cheesy snack)
  • Tea & coffee
  • Beer & wine
  • Breakfast cereal
  • Chipolata sausages
  • Bacon
  • Eggs
  • Beans
  • Bread & rolls
  • Milk
  • Ketchup
  • Tomatoes
  • Cheese
  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Snacks a plenty
Okay, so I think that's it but please do comment if you can think of anything else! Nothing big though, Ed is already ranting about how we will fit it all in. I shouldn't have shown him the list!
Happy Camping! Nix

Last year's camping trip
A very happy camper
Gabe getting some country air

Nice view, no tablecloth though!

Fires and fairylights

1 comment:

  1. Hi! We've just got back from a hot & dry camping trip to Joshua Tree National Park so I think our camping requirements may be a little different to yours! But I would say wet wipes are an essential for young & old and for all sorts of things where ever you are....