I will be picking up our families first travel trailer next week, I am really excited and nervous about camping with our young family. My wife and I have two daughters aged two years and four months old. We have wanted a trailer for a while now but I was always set on waiting until the girls were a little older. But, after visiting a dealership we found a trailer we love at a good price and really think its going to be a great way to break our family out of the daily grind of having young kids. We went for a trailer that we can hopefully keep for quite a few years and grow into. If anyone has any tips or even stories about camping with their younger kids I would love to hear them.
You will need storage space in the bathroom for towels.
When we have had young grandchildren with us we always take a bag of sandbox sand along in a Rubbermaid box even tho there is a great beach in the park they always have something to play in.
Our girls started camping at a very young age also, and the memories from trips will stay with them!
I remember when we took a trip across country - they had to write a page in a notebook about everything they did that day, what states we we in, something about the state, where we camped and some thing that they remembered that was different about the state we lived in (NY).....they still have those notebooks and once in a while will look at them and remember ~ groceries being put into a sack (bag); something to drink was pop (soda); a frappe' was an ice cream soda!
They now camp with their sons and have them doing the same thing!
Space will be limited and so will toys.....when you live outside the confines of your trailer, they will find things to amuse themselves with (as they get a bit older).... collect a pretty colored leaf, or a rock with "gold" in it, bring home pine cones and make something for a Christmas present....oh the list is endless!
While your children are young....the point is...MEMORIES!!!! They last a lifetime!
Enjoy your new adventure and make those memories last a lifetime!
* This post was
edited 07/21/12 06:09am by Poppy & Nana *
Leo & Kathy
in the Adirondacks
2013 Rubicon 2900 Toy Hauler
2008 - Ford F250 Super Crew 4x4
I think starting young is the best way to build the camping experience. We tent-camped before the children and continued doing so every year until they were in high school.
Very important to start in the early ages because you basically control their social schedule. The children are very adaptable to new situations and will quickly accept camping. At the early ages you are also able to take trips on schedules that do no correspond to school schedules and events.
As they go to elementary school, the children become involved in more activities, which usually mean the parents become car-poolers for the week and weekend. Very difficult to be camping at that stage.
So you're making the correct move now to introduce the children to a lifestyle.
By the way, that daily one-page summary is something I wish we had done on our trips. Everyone could enjoy looking at that as the years pass. Maybe the adults should have the assignment too to provide some added "family history."
Our kids love camping. We've been taking them out since they were about 6 months old, they're now 4 & 6. We bring toys and stuff for drawing and coloring as well as DVD's should we get stuck inside. I agree with jim1632, it's good that you started now. Weather permitting, you can get out in spring and fall when kids are in school and enjoy your favorite sights without the crowds. Our oldest is starting school and I'm a little bummed about the schedule restrictions we will have for the next 12 years. Take advantage of it while you can.
Also, I put towels on the benches of the dinette to try to keep them clean. My kids, even when they have a napkin, tend to wipe their hands on the seat when they are eating and spills are not uncommon. In addition, when my kids were that small I always had detergent and stain remover in the trailer. I've ran out of clothes on more than one occasion.
We have four small children (7-2) and tent camping was out of the question! We tried it once and that was it! We bought a older truck camper and have used it once so far this summer. It was great for the first time, the kids had a blast and we did have to take turns with a tent, but no one seemed to mind. We bought a 19in. flat screen for movies and we have one cabinet full of games. I had to build a custom table and I painted a checkered board on top because my oldest son likes to play chess!
With the two year old, just having sand toys and being able to play in the dirt makes him a happy guy.
With the kids starting school soon, time is limited and we already have two more trips booked before school starts. I know once school starts camping will be over for a while.
My kids, now in their 40's, have been camping since they were 6 weeks old. They still love camping.
Two tips, geared to the young age of your children:
Make sure of their safety inside the TT. Screen or net over bunk so they cannot fall out. No falls out the TT door or off the steps. No playing with stove knobs.
Make sure of their safety outside the TT. Tag team watching. You don't want to ever have one of those situations where one parent thought that the other was watching and really neither was. Verbalize the changeover between watchers. Camping brings many strange new situations, people, vehicles, animals; keep watch over your kids all the time. I don't mean strict soldier watch. I mean playing with them, or watching them play and cheering them on. Make it fun.
Happy camping! You've got a lot of memories to make.
You will need to school them on how to correctly use the facilities. Nothing will ruin a trip as fast as repairing toilet issues while camping. Don't forget about safety, too many people let children do things that are very dangerous around fires. I also see children way to young turned loose on bicycles without any supervision in CG's. Remember to always make it fun for them.