Top 10 Camping Do’s and Don’ts with Little Kids


This summer in order to save a few $s and broaden our horizons we decided to go Tent camping. For our first time as a family we would only do 3 nights, and 3 nights in a tent with a 3 & 5-year-old was a wise decision! So I decided to compile a list of Do’s and Don’ts to help and warn other parents who also have the bright idea of camping with little kids.

 Brandi Camping Collage3

Top 10 Do’s of Camping with little kids

10. Bring lots and lots of bug spray, repellant, essential oils and gear.

No matter how “bug free” you are told it is, nothing attracts those little varmints like young blood!

9. Bring and wear sunscreen, even on cloudy days!

I swear some of my worst sunburns have been on cloudy days, and as a redhead I’ve had some doozies!

8. Pack various sand and beach toys (cars, buckets, shovels, sifter).

It seems every campsite has dirt and kids will find it and a way to play with it. So go ahead and prepare for it and pack toys for it!

7. Easy Snacks (already prepped and don’t need cooked) and for on the go.

While tent camping most of our cooking was done over the fire or propane stove. So think about that and if you want to start it up every time one of your little angels says “I’m hungry”!

6. Pack multiple hoodies/sweatshirts/jackets

I realized while sitting around the campfire eating s’mores that my daughter does not have enough hoodies!! I should have hit up the resale shop before leaving, melt-y marshmallow is one nasty mess!

5. Find and use extra-long marshmallow/hot dog roaster/sticks/pokers

No matter their age, size or heat of the fire your little people will want to help roast their own!

4. Pack a few Favorite toys and books

Let the kids pick a few favorite books and toys to bring for the car and quiet time. If they can’t get dirty then they can stay in the car or tent. Just make sure to explain that if they play with them outside of designated area they will get dirty!

3. Plan some activities/games for while at the campground.

Our kids were a little young for a “full” scavenger hunt but they really enjoyed helping the bigger kids as they went site to site!

2. The little potty saved me!

My 3-year-old son was potty training (I know crazy mom) while we were camping. Now have already training one kid I keep a one piece potty in the car. That little potty seat saved my life and body (mosquitos are nasty little blood suckers at night) and late night potty runs are no fun!

And lastly…

1. Take your patience, patience and more Patience!!!

Kids will be kids and you can only do so much. They will be loud, they will make a mess, and they will get themselves and their stuff dirty! Especially right after a shower and you clean up/off something!


Top 10 Don’ts of camping with little kids

 10. Don’t take anything that can’t be washed or cleaned.

Pretty self-explanatory… if it can it will get dirty!

9. Don’t forget that special bedtime lovie/blanket/snuffle friend/music maker…

You will need it! And nothing will take its place!

8. Don’t expect angels or them to behave differently from home.

They will be themselves or themselves on level 10! Even more outspoken! My sweet, soft-spoken, quiet son found his voice while “living” in a tent only 25 feet from our elderly (very possibly childless) neighbors!

7. Don’t think it’s like your “glory days” and you can stay up all night around the campfire drinking & being loud.

See number 6!

6. Don’t think they will sleep in…AT ALL!

Tents, sunrise and little kids don’t mix well!

 5. Don’t expect to stick to bedtimes!

By the time its dark enough for s’mores, glow sticks and/or sparklers its well past bedtime. It doesn’t have to be every night… but who are we kidding who doesn’t want a s’more every night while camping!

4. Don’t forget extra clothes, shoes, towels…Everything!

Don’t ask, just trust me! You WILL need them!

3. Don’t forget rules still apply…For everyone!

Still need to pick up toys, use manners, wash hands, get time-outs!

2. Don’t expect to rekindle the flame/romantic bliss in your marriage!

Kids will be kids and end up in bed with you!! Even if they don’t or haven’t crawled in bed with you in years!

And last but not least!

Drum-roll Please!

1. Don’t Forget to RELAX, have fun and Enjoy your Family!!


Hope these tips and warnings help you and your family on your next camping trip!

Stay safe and Enjoy your holiday weekend!

Xoxo~ Brandi~

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Brandi was born a traveler. Her first road trip was when she was only 2 days old. She has lived in 5 states (all before the age of 2) and has visited 41! She has also traveled to 8 countries and completed 2 marathons; a full in Ireland and half at Disney world. Now, as a stay at home mother and a future registered nurse, Brandi's travels are for her family and the occasional trip up north. She has been married to her best friend, J, for 9 years and they have been together for 16 years. Together they have 2 amazingly fun and goofy kids. Kaysi who's a very unique, bubbly, and busy 5 year old little lady and Kal who is a sweet yet tough and tumble little 3 year old boy. Aside from spending time with her family and chasing or being chased by the kids, Brandi enjoys crafting, DIY projects, cooking, working out, snuggling with a good book, or her hubby and a movie.



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