With television, video games and other forms of technology around every corner, it’s easy for families to get caught up in their own worlds. Even parents and children sitting in the same room can be separated by iPhones, iPods, text messages, laptops and computer games. If technology has taken hold of your life, consider tuning out for a weekend and getting back to nature.
Before you start packing the things you will need, start with the things that you won’t need. Leave the portable DVD player, cell phones, iPods, PSP and Nintendo DS . If you own a portable GPS , you may want to consider bringing it along for geo caching or for the car ride. But the technology stops there — leave the laptops at home.
Locate a campground with toilets and showers, and you’ll alleviate most of your teenagers’ concerns. When researching the campsite, confirm if they have grills or fire pits available for cooking. Once you’ve found the campground and gotten the family on board, you can start planning for your family camping trip.
If you’ve never been camping before, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how easy the experience can be. One of the most important things is to bring a tent big enough for the family. Include sleeping bags, extra blankets and pillows, one or two changes of clothes per person, hiking boots, extra socks and food. Use backpacks, rather than suitcases, to haul your belongings.
Don’t forget the food! Be sure to bring things that don’t need to be refrigerated and can either be eaten cold or warmed over a fire. Include a pot and saucepan for soups or anything else you may need to heat. If you are going on a short trip, a cooler with ice might be helpful, especially for drinks.
A family camping trip is a great way to leave the technology behind and get back to basics.