Monday, August 12, 2013

Tips for camping with a baby

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A lot of people thought I was nuts to try and go camping with a six month old. The idea of it made me nervous too. So much stuff! How will she sleep? But there are few things my husband enjoys more, and I know he reallllllly wants Avery to enjoy camping {unlike her mother} as she grows up. So I thought, why not?
Here are some helpful tips for camping with a baby...
1. Leave during nap time: Idyllwild is about 2.5 hours from us. We decided it would be best to leave when she was getting ready to go down for a nap any way so she'd sleep for most of the trip. Much more peaceful for baby...and parents.

2. Bring a Pack n' Play: We knew we needed to bring something we could set her down in. We went back and forth between her exersaucer, her rock n' play and her stroller. All of these things took up too much room. We busted out the Pack n' Play for the first time and we were so stoked on how small it is when it's all folded up. Avery LOVED hanging out in it, and it was nice for us to be able to set her down when we needed free hands. 
Plus this doubled as her bed, which we put in our tent at night.

3. Bring husband to put together said Pack n' Play: Just kidding, sort of. I almost always have Brandon put together Avery's various toys/swings/seats etc. but the Pack n' Play was so easy even I could do it ;-)

4. Bring easy foods! With all the stuff we had to bring, we wanted to limit the amount of ingredients we'd have to pack. We wanted to keep it simple. Hotdogs don't get any easier. We also brought pringles, stuff for breakfast burritos, sodas, water, cookies. Very nutritious meals ;-) You could always bring sliced fruit, veggies, string cheese, crackers, stuff for sandwiches, etc. Avery is still super simple as far as food is concerned. Our campground was private enough to nurse her whenever we wanted. We also brought along some baby food (peas) and Super Puffs which we give her when we eat so she feels like she's partaking.

5. Bring a baby carrier. We didn't have the space to pack her stroller, so we used her baby carrier to walk around the campground. If you want to go on any hikes, strolls, etc. a carrier can come in handy since it gets tiring holding a chubby baby :-)

6. Turn off phones and enjoy time together. Enough said.

7. Never underestimate the appeal of water bottles and pots and pans. I lugged a bunch of Avery's toys with me and she wanted nothing to do with them. We gave her an empty water bottle and a few pots and pans and she banged on them for over an hour.

8. Take a family picture. I almost always have the camera out, but very rarely remember to set up the self-timer and get a family shot. Great one for the baby book!

9. It's okay not to match :-) Polka dots and cheetah? Why not. No headbands and bows, this is camping after all.

**Most of all, be flexible. We brought a sound machine (ipod and speakers) to put in the tent while she slept. Since she goes down so early (7 pm) we wanted to drown out any noises from other campers. It worked like a dream for a few hours. Unfortunately, a pretty rowdy group in the campsite next to us got louder and louder as the night went on, and after the third time of Avery waking up crying, Brandon packed it all up and we headed home! It sounded like they were having a great time and we didn't want to rain on anyone's parade. But we also didn't want to ruin our daughter's night sleep (especially since she's sleeping 12 hours every night and I don't want to mess up a good thing!) **

Photobucket

17 comments:

Sara said...

Great post! My husband and I love camping, but the thought of taking our baby with us has scared us out of it multiple times. It doesn't help that we usually float/camp with 2 dogs, a giant load of firewood and everything we could possibly need for 3 days, which is almost more than our little canoe can handle even with out baby stuff. We pack up and camp on the river far far away from other people (due to exactly the loud/rowdy crew you encountered). We may need to find a nice empty campground in the middle of no where and try it sometime though. I really miss it!

Erika said...

We went to Idlywild for a day back in March, while vacationing in Palm Springs. It was fun! What a neat little mountain town. I have not yet camped with babies - but these are good tips if I ever decide to!

Danielle Carroll said...

She is so adorable! Camping with a 6 month old would definitely be a challenge, but it looks like you guys rocked it! Go momma!!

Olivia Irwin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Olivia Irwin said...

So cute! Looks like you guys had a great time, and baby looks like it too!

www.oliviadaisy.blogspot.ca

jessica said...

well, it definitely looks like she had lots of fun. and what a great family photo!

Laura said...

love this post! my husband and I love camping and will be taking our daughter in September when she is 5mo! Should be interesting :)

Kandi said...

Oh my gosh that first set of pictures of Avery in her Pack and Play was too cute. Her eyes are soooooo pretty. It really sounded like an amazing trip although cut short. I love the turning off the phones idea..need to practice that more (exactly why I didn't want to get a smart phone. ugh!). Love you

Michelle {lovely little things} said...

Love the helpful hints! My husband too loves camping, while I'm not opposed, it's not my favorite thing in the world either :) Glad to know camping with a baby is possible!

Allison said...

You are brave! I'm glad you all went and had a good time. Love that family picture!

Cassie Tremblay said...

You go mama! Someone invited us and I was like ya......right! But it looked like you guys did good! Everett loves plastic water bottles too and his plastic wipes wrapped and I wonder why I spend money on toys! Great post!

Alexa said...

We took Mila when she was a little over a year and that was still challenging in a way, but we all ended up having a great time!

Fran said...

You're so brave going camping with a little one! I'm still afraid going camping with just my husband haha

Katie said...

I hate camping, but I know my bf will want to go camping with the babe, so your tips are helpful! =)


xo,
Katie
hellolittlebean.com
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Rose Marry said...

Camping is good idea to hang out. With Kellys Camping you enjoy you camping and never worry about anything.

campingguide said...

This is such a great place, clean, and very comfortable.

Camping Guide

Sarah Shumate said...

I'm such a dope - I didn't even realize you were regularly blogging again until today! I'd missed reading about you guys!

Great family picture! And kudos to you guys for not letting it get to you when the neighbors got rowdy! There will be plenty more times to attempt staying the whole night! Maybe you can call this one the practice run. :O)

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