winging it mum

My rookie camping with kids synopsis!

on April 12, 2012

As you may remember last week I gave a cry out for help as I was about to head off on our rookie family camping trip to Sorrento. I was very thankful for the great advice that I received from some of you – some of my thoughts were affirmed and light was shed on things I had over looked in my preparations.

Considering we got back last Saturday I really should have let you know how we went – as some of you may have thought we didn’t survive!! I am happy to report that we had a fantastic time.

We stayed in a hired on site van with an annex attached. It was perfect for us – mum and I slept in the van and the kids in the annex and on the last night Brett was in annex with the kids. We were about 100 paces from the beach and to the toilet block, there was even a playground!!!

The weather for the first two days and nights was fantastic. It was sunny and hot and the bay was calm and perfect for the kids to hit the beach – and hit it they did!!!! The third day the wind picked up and the beach suddenly had waves:) Brett arrived and his parents came over by boat from Queenscliff for a visit. It was Good Friday and we enjoyed the famous Vanilla slices, and had fish and chips for lunch together! We hit the back beach and Jas skinny dipped in the rock pools and Elijah climbed all over the sand dunes! That night the weather packed in and it poured and we had a little thunder and lots of wind. I was so thankful that Brett had arrived as the annex roof started to leak and he was able to fix it out in the rain:) Thankfully we had only planned to stay until Saturday and when we awoke to poor weather we packed up early and decided to take it slowly home. We tried to find a market, went to a garage sale, checked out Arthur’s Seat look out and then headed to one of my favourite markets Red Hill (with the rest of Victoria’s population!). There we had lunch and the best scout camp oven scones you can imagine!

Here is my synopsis of our trip:

  • Caravan parks and camping grounds are fantastic for kids! Children are instantly immersed into a new little community. They network and get to know other kids and people. When they are at the playground they instantly make friends and play with the other kids, they then see those same kids hours later in water at the beach and out and about in town etc. I guess other trips we have taken the kids on they make friends at a park or hotel etc but they usually only get to play with them once. I loved the continuity of the caravan park and how the kids made themselves at home straightaway!
  • I was warned that sleeping times for the kids would be thrown out and to roll with it. So I was all ready for later nights for them etc but we scored with daylight savings having just changed, so it was dark earlier and the kids were longing for bed even a little earlier than normal! The kids had played at new levels, never before had Elijah carried 30 buckets full of water from the shore up to a large hole. Jas didn’t have any day sleeps or rests and Elijah’s day sleeps were shorter than normal but great considering – so that may have also made them hit the hay earlier! But they did awake nice and early each morning to make up for those early nights! Our poor neighbours!
  • Night times can be a little slow! Mum and I read and retired so early! Mum was so bored she was even open to being taught how to play Suduko!
  • Noises in the night can be welcomed or not! Mum felt like she was lying on the main road with cars driving over her the first night, I was disturbed by a loud repetitive noise; none of which seemed to disturb the kids. Then rain and wind on the final night made all these noises all but disappear:) Since I have returned from the trip I have seen this Volkswagon Tiguan commercial (click on the link to view the ad). I think after the first night Mum and I would have loved to have done this kind of camping! Ha ha:)
  • Caravans are really fun! Within a minute the kids had opened every door, cupboard (and in a caravan there are so many cupboards in every little nook and cranny!) and played with most zips – no toys needed hey! Jas was amazed that there was a kitchen in the bedroom;) Cooking and washing up was different (as we had no water hooked up or gas – just electricity) and makes for an interesting change. The kids loved sleeping out in the annex together and giggled themselves to sleep!
  • Close proximity to the beach is fantastic each time we did the 100 paces to the beach piled high with things we always forgot something and it was so good to be able to walk back to the campsite and get the extra boogie board, chair or spade that we forgot!
  • There is camping equipment and there is camping equipment!!!! As we drove through the camping grounds we were impressed or astounded by some people’s set ups. Some people travel with better BBQsย and outdoor settings then we have at home! Whilst supervising the kids at the playground I would look around and admire others set ups and think about what I would like and want etc. I now know the kind of tent I would get etc. Not sure if some people really rough it or not these days?
  • It was fantastic to be able to clean the “house” in a flash with a dust pan and to avoid having to wash their clothes! After the trip I came home with a thud as I tried to get all the washing of our clothes, linen etc done in the cold and wet weather we had over easter!
  • If the love of your life (or anyone else for that matter) is joining the adventure make sure that you pack and they pack warm enough things for them to sleep in and with. Sorry Brett;0

So would we do another family camping trip definitely! I did like having a caravan but would be open to tenting it in the right kind of tent;) So anyone want to lock in a camping trip with us?

Em xx

Here a few snaps from when I had my phone with me on the beach:)

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12 responses to “My rookie camping with kids synopsis!

  1. Jodi says:

    Well you know that I am planning to get a tent so we would love to join you in future camping trips. Not sure if it would be a great idea though – hehe!!!!

  2. Gabriel says:

    Rob has just taken ALL 3 of the girls camping for 2 nights… on his own… in a tent! Leaving me home on my own to have a ‘holiday’ too ๐Ÿ™‚ They were all very excited about going… less so this morning when they woke at 5:45am and realised that the world is COLD at that hour ๐Ÿ˜‰ But a warm cup of cordial (?) later and some bought firewood from town and (I think) they are doing ok. Will let you know tomorrow when they return!!

    • embilee says:

      Hey Gub, your husband is one brave man! But also clever – hot cordial is something I wouldn’t have thought of! What was the verdict would he do it again?

  3. Patch says:

    So glad you had a great time. All the fresh air and being constantly on the go wears the kids out which probably contributed to their early beds too. I don’t sleep well at first but once I get used to it I’m usually fine. Noises in the night are even louder in a tent though. Often end up going to bed quite early too because I’m worm out and because it’s a bit boring or too dark to read. It’s great if you are by a beach too because the kids will just play there for hours and for free.

  4. brettaishangdi says:

    I love watching the storms come across the water, it is perhaps not as fun for the people that me and Jas saw setting up their big tent. I was a little disappointed that we didn’t get to take our romantic walk along the beach at night due to the thunderstorm though!

  5. Looks brilliant – glad you had a great time!

  6. Erin @ Lohtown Life says:

    Glad you guys had such a lovely holiday ๐Ÿ™‚ You’re right about some people being extremely kitted out – we’ve seen people with decent-sized flatscreen TVs, outdoor heaters (the full-size cafe ones), cloth tablecloths (complete with a fruit bowl!), fairy lights…

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