Tips for packing it up and going home
Packing it up to go home needs special care, attention and planning.
I remember our first tent camping trip and it was a wonderful time, until...it was time to pack it up and go home. We had kids running around, older ones gone, somewhere, and one hot and mad husband.
I knew we needed a plan. A plan that everyone knew about. A plan that was scripted of each member of the family's responsibility to help in order to leave relatively, smoothly. I realized that if we were going to be "campers" we needed a system in place, just like home. That way my husband and I weren't just barking orders. Frustrated.
In my Planner, I wrote in the Monthly pages in May (our first month of camping each year) our Master Plan. I wrote, Camping Resposibilities, up at the top and began my detailed outlook on how I envisioned our pack-it-up and go, experience. I then went over with the family and made sure we were on the same page and switched around jobs until everyone felt good about it. Each member of the family had a job(s). When it was time to go, everyone got to it and did their job. This made leaving run so smoothly. Whether you camp in a tent, RV or camper, planning how to leave with kids and what their role is to help, is crucial.
Some job titles for kids included:
2 helpers to help Dad take down the tents
Who will deflate mattresses/ fold blankets or sleeping bags
All gear put in their bins
Food, wrapped up and put away
Trash pick-up/walk around your camp and pick-up all trash
Assign someone to bring in laundry baskets/bags; I start the loads right away (if I'm home late, I begin this the next day)
Put camping bins away when home and stow away until the next camping trip
Someone to unload food/drinks, put away and empty cooler
Each child bring in their own clothes they didn't use and any other item of theirs
Since my husband has all the outside camper pack-up to do, my boys usually help him along with emptying trash and getting it to the dumpster. They also are in charge of getting bikes back in the camper.
The girls and I split up and clean the camper before we take-off so clean-up is quick when we get home. Quickly wiping down counters and swiping through the bathroom and shower and then sweeping the camper out keeps us organized and clean.
**Keep a container of cleaning supplies in your camper**
When we get home:
Someone assigned to empty food from cupboards--put away in home cupboards
Someone assigned to empty the fridge--put away in home fridge
Laundry duty. Carry in all the dirty laundry and put next to the laundry room
Each child in charge of bringing in their own clothes they didn't wear and anything else they needed to bring in that is theirs.
That wraps it up for my 5 Days of Camping Tips! I hope that they've helped in some way...
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Don't forget to visit my friends over at iHomeschool Network for more tips!