As spring approaches families begin to plan their summer vacations. One idea that may enter the family discussion is camping. Experts say that camping has become a favorite getaway for summertime adventure – but are these people also experts in child care and family functionality? One would have to wonder who in their right mind would suggest such a thing?
I believe I have 10 perfectly good reasons NOT to take your kids camping. They’re sound, logical reasons that should be contemplated by any well meaning parent that is considering this type of entertainment for their family. Review and discuss them. You just may come to the same conclusion.
If you take your family camping you won’t be able to make those gourmet dinners that usually adorn your table. All that meal preparation with the special ingredients is thrown out the window. When you’re camping, you eat basic meals that are simple to prepare and require a lot less fuss.
Forget about reveling in that feeling of satisfaction when all the dinner dishes are done and the countertops are cleared off for the next meal. There are absolutely no countertops in the great outdoors. That relaxed feeling you get when soaking your hands in warm, sudsy dishwater while cleaning up pans, gone. Camping means disposable plates, forks and cups that go directly into the trash.
The usual “out of the way” camp locations are remote and cell service is rare. Whether you have a landline or exclusively cell, you won’t be able to field all those phone calls from salespeople. Basically, you’ll be taking a break from everything, out of touch and out of reach for the duration. Instead, you’ll be connecting with nature trails and outdoorsy stuff.
You’ll be missing all those relaxing car trips that increase your knowledge of city streets and traffic patterns when running errands, taking kids to playdates, or dropping teens off at the movies. Instead, when you’re all around the campfire, all you have to worry about is how crispy you want your marshmallow to become.
You’ll be missing those nightly coerced baths you put your brood through and cleaning the ring out of the tub. Instead, you’ll find yourself seriously pondering if the dip in the pool can count as a shower and you’ll never get to pull out a cleaning bottle, rag, sponge, rubber gloves or whatever else you use.
You won’t be able to keep up on your housework or attend your Zumba class. Your daily routine will be interrupted with any of the following unusual and possibly harmful activities: trail hiking, horseback riding, boating, swimming, and even campfire watching.
There won’t be any last minute trips to the grocery store to pick up something forgotten. You’ll just have to make do with what you’ve got and not worry about the rest. They say that the camping life is life simplified.
You’ll miss your favorite TV shows and scrolling Facebook. Instead, your ears will be ringing with the sound of birds and crickets. Also, your eyes may grow bored from continuously looking at lakes, forests, flowers and sunsets.
You won’t be able to tell your kids to “stay out of the dirt” because you’ll be living in it. And forget the phrase: “Stay clean because company’s coming over,” because if you’re getting company from the next camp site over, then they’re dealing with all the same things too.
And finally the #1 reason you definitely don’t want to take your kids camping:
They will have so much fun enjoying themselves, and hanging out with YOU that they’ll forever be begging you to take them again.
Your kids will gush about the fun they had gathering sticks to start a fire, the trails they hiked, and the waterfalls they came across. The raccoon that stole your stash of homemade cookies right off the picnic table at dusk will forever be remembered as your nemesis. Not to mention the myriad of unusual noises that only seemed to disturb your sleep. They’ll never stop talking about the flaming marshmallow you swung around to blow out, but then almost caught your hair on fire. No, take it from me, camping is definitely not a good choice for the family.