We are in full-force camping mode here. And I love it….but am admittedly exhausted from the packing and unpacking cycle each week to get to the weekend. We are getting our system down (which is a great benefit to doing it often), but it’s still quite the process. However, despite all that, it is absolutely worth it for the family time and memories.
Over the past few weeks, I have been compiling a list of items that I really love camping and think you would too. It’s a bit of a random list, but life is random these days, so that’s ok. Be sure to scroll down to the end for a couple of giveaways too.
Oh and thank you so much for clicking through these affiliate links. It doesn’t cost you a dime and helps US out just a tiny bit!
I don’t like bringing our own pillows camping, but am not a fan of going pillow-less while sleeping either. ONWEGO pillows solve that problem because they fold down small (about the size of a softball) and are self-inflating for camping. We have found that our family prefers them just barely inflated and tucked inside a shirt or jacket for comfort. They’re sort of like a thermarest with a lot more plush padding for comfort. Finally, they’re a great size for most people (big and small!)
We live in Wyoming. While we certainly aren’t the windiest state, camping when it’s windy is often such a bummer! There have been plenty a campfire that has not happened because of the wind and danger of wildfires being started. The Wind Warrior has been great to provide a wall for the wind that is fairly easy to set up, definitely packable, and very effective.
I have yet to meet a kid that doesn’t love a good rocket to play with outside. These air rockets are recommended for kids aged 10+, but my 5 and 7 year old can handle playing with them safely just fine. The assembly is quick and minimal and they shoot high AND usually come down fairly close to where you shoot them (ideal for campsites). They wouldn’t withstand super rough abuse (hence the 10+ age thing), but if you’re careful with them, they do great!
There are perks to living out west, and that includes less bugs (sorry you Alaskans!)…but up in the mountains and especially in the earlier summer, they can be horrific. We were skeptical, but shocked to see that the all-natural DEET-free formula of Buzz Away truly does keep bugs at bay. Made with essential plant oils and good for you (and the kids) and the environment too. AND it works for ticks and black flies too.
Buzz Away Extreme is also doing a giveaway of their own on Facebook. As you go on your own family adventure, you can share pictures on Facebook with the hashtag #bugfreefun to be entered to win a Buzz Away Extreme Super Pack which includes an 8oz bottle of Buzz Away Extreme, container of child-friendly towelettes AND a $50 Amazon Gift Card. Also use the code 10OFFBUZZ to get 10% off any Buzz Away Extreme product at quantumhealth.com. The code is valid through September 30 and can be used once per customer.
When we pack for camping, I usually have one easy-access bag with our jackets and hats in them. I don’t like packing them in with the rest of our clothing, because I want to know where they are and be able to find them quick. While a backpack is great, these Booty Bags are super simple for just throwing those jackets in…and then putting it on your back for carrying if needed. It’s certainly not as secure as a backpack, but lightweight and simple. Mystery Ranch makes both a “Light” and heavier version in a variety of colors. We prefer the “light” version because it’s just a little less to haul! Oh and the interior zippered pocket is great for sunglasses, wallets, keys, money, etc.
The Dine-Pod comes with us camping…because most picnic tables are just a disaster waiting to happen for little people that slip through the big crack between the table and bench. Seriously, we lose at least one kiddo down the “crack” every trip. The Dine-Pod weighs just over 5 pounds, folds down like a camp chair and brings kids up to table-height so they can join the family. While it’s not height-adjustable, we feel like it works for most situations. And it’s not JUST for camping – it’s great for restaurant or at-home use too. It’s best for kids aged ~6mo (or sitting) until about age 3 (or 30 pounds).
Kid gear often drives me crazy…mostly because it just takes up so much ROOM! The Go-Pod is awesome because it is a place for babies to be able to “stand”/sit and toys can be attached to the loops. It also has a spot for snacks and drinks. Then it folds down just like a camp chair for storage and/or travel.
Kid-Co has updated their Plus model and it now has a removable padded cushion to keep baby comfortable. At only 4.5 pounds, it’s a super easy thing camping. I throw ours in the car and have it ready for post-hike picnics too! It also has 4 different height adjustments for different size babies, though my babies tend to be a little short so we sometimes add in a “foot stool” in the form of a blanket under their feet at the youngest ages. Kid-Co recommends use from age ~4 months to walking. It’s super easy to just hose down after use (we just remove the padded cushion first).
The Bobby Baby Chair works for both the floor (or grass) or can be attached to a chair to keep Baby feeling like they are part of the crowd. It has a bolster to comfortably snuggle smaller babies (like mine) and a removable snack/toy tray. Baby is also kept safe with a 3-point harness. We love that it folds flatter for storage and has a carrying handle. I’m all about the gear that folds down as small as possible! For use with babies aged 3mo-1 year.
I’ve posted about Blue Lizard before, but just have to mention them again since we use them daily and LOVE the fact that they are natural and go on so easily! See our full review here.
We always love being able to bless someone else with a bit of fun gear. We are giving away the following today:
- ONWEGO pillows for your whole family (4 pillows total, US only)
- Large 8 oz. bottle of Buzz Away Extreme (US or Canada)
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