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packing for camping, arghhh! - Page 2

post #21 of 39
Yeah, there's a question...all you cloth diaperers:
Do you do cloth while camping?

Ds is half using the potty, half using cloth and using a disposable at night. My plan for camping is having a potty nearby and keeping him out of a diaper all day and him just wear one at night. If if needs to wear a diaper in the day I'll just use a disposable, but I don't think that will happen too often.
post #22 of 39
Dawncayden, I've used cloth sometimes, and disposables sometimes .
post #23 of 39
Some things we do that may be helpful to others: We keep most camping things on a utility bookshelf in this little laundry/pantry/storage room we have. The sleeping bags and their compression bags live in a really really large cotton bag at the top of the bedroom closet (I want to be sure they don’t get damp and aren’t compressed while in storage). When I get around to it, I’ll probably move the tent with the sleeping bags, I’d hate for it to get damp over a long period of time.

When we pack, it’s mostly in those two spots.

The sleeping bags get compressed into their small bags.

From the utility shelf we grab the mats, the tent, the tarp (which is stored folded with the strings still attached to the 4 corners), the stove and canisters and the 2 small rubbermaids (12” by 14” maybe) that hold the kitchen stuff (cloth napkins, utensils, table cloth, a few tea towels and rags, dish soap, cooking stuff, foil, paper towel) and other small items (small dustpan-sized broom, deck of cards, matches, tp, the hammock, extra ropes, a large garbage bag and a couple smaller grocery type bags, some Ziplocs). We grab the empty water jug (to be filled by potable water when we get near the campground). We grab the folding chairs if we’ll have room for them. We grab the axe, hatchet and the camp light.

Next we pack one backpack with everyone’s clothes, toiletries, a few facecloths and two smaller towels for all of us to share. Pjs and toiletries go in last because they’re the first things we’ll need.

A second backpack will hold sunscreen and bug spray, hats, books, knitting, newspaper and any other odd and ends that didn’t fit anywhere else (flashlights, etc) or was a last minute addition.

Finally is the food which probably got prepared over the previous few days (we eat like kings while camping). I put all the food in the cooler whether it needs to be refrigerated or not. I try to make it all fit in there. I prepare as much stuff ahead of time as possible and it all goes into reusable jars, plastic containers, etc. Really reduces the amount of garbage we have to deal with while camping.

A few tips:

I make sure to have a large garbage bag in case it’s raining the morning we’re leaving. We just put the tent and tarp in there to bring it back home and dry it properly. I hate squeezing a wet tent into its bag.

We always pack the tent and tarp last because they’re the first things we want to set up when we arrive.

The paper towel is used after meals to wipe food residues off plates and pots prior to washing them. One sheet prevents floaties in your water.

At home, the flashlights live on the camping shelf.

Having a backpack dedicated to the odds and ends ensures we have no stray objects in the car and makes me feel strangely in control.
post #24 of 39
post #25 of 39
We mostly boat camp and stay in leantos. We also use rubbermaid bins.

Clothing and sleeping bags usually go in a dry bag...one for each person, clothing on the bottom, sleeping bags and bedding on top/ I am usually in charge of seting up the bedding etc. dh is all about the food and cooking etc.
My kids usually wear the same clothes all the time anyway so I don't woory much about diry laundry...

I want to go camping now.....
post #26 of 39
we have rubbermade totes. One is our kitchen which as all of our cooking stuff, dishes and dish washing stuff and spices and koolaid mix etc.

we have our tent which also includes tarp, extra rope, stretchy cord, water proofer, tent freshener and tent broom.

one with our sleeping bags and camping pillow, pads etc.

milk crates with smaller stuff-
one with camp toys and one with swimming stuff.
dog stuff in one

towels and bathing stuff in a solid tote bin that we use as a wash tub.

for packing clothes everyone brings their own soft side bags. dirties go into a giant stuff sack. and I never pack extra or at least never consider anything that has been on a camping trip clean . . . so I don't worry about keeping things too separate. Also I make my kids wear the same clothes every day until they are just too gross. That way re-cycle any bug spray that was on them

the only thing we have to pack each time is food and clothes. If you go camping every weekend, every other weekend I would head down to good will and get some cheap camping clothes so you can just repack them right out of the wash. Thats what my aunt and uncle did with their kids. They would actually wash them while they were gone and leave them in the camper.

also pack some easy camp foods (the fantastic brand mixes are great for this and taste awesome. also pasta and jarred sauce, pancake mix etc) and keep a pantry stocked and ready to grab. You can put in canned fruit and veggies. powdered milk and cereal. then all you have to grab is fresh stuff.

and in our car at all time during the summer is sun screen, bug spray, first aid kit, bubbles, side walk chalk and baby wipes. . . . .
post #27 of 39
How do you fit the stuff in the car? That's our big problem. When the kids were little we could roll sleeping bags and stuff them under their feet for extra room.
post #28 of 39
My new and improved packing list is an excel spreadsheet that I can print up. It has these columns:
  1. item
  2. what container item goes in
  3. who is responsible for packing item

Also, my new routine is to tweak my list after each camping trip to add/subtract items. We went camping on the weekend and it was so fun . But I'm thinking that going for two nights isn't worth the work preparing for it .
post #29 of 39
Originally Posted by MamaMonica View Post
How do you fit the stuff in the car? That's our big problem. When the kids were little we could roll sleeping bags and stuff them under their feet for extra room.
This is what I'm worried about, we have 3 families in 2 cars going for 3-4 days. 6 adults, 3 kids in carseats, one minivan and one small car. We are hoping to all fit
post #30 of 39
Thread Starter 

Wow, it was so good to see all the responses!!!

I am in the middle of changing my email and I missed that there were posts, got a little bummed actually...

SO.... I am happy to hear all the responses and am inspired.

I feel like I am doing an "OK" job of this thing called camping.

I just feel a million miles away from backpacking and sleeping under the stars --and that is ok, we have a blast with the kids!!

WE did camping with and without cloth diapers --we had our second outta them as fast as we could just to avoid the camping/diaper thing... but then we needed a porta potty set up to avoid late night runs outside to pee!

This year we are skipping our normal few music festivals to try and enjoy some "real" camping.

Thanks for the insights!
post #31 of 39
Thread Starter 

back packed to the beach!!

sucessful backpacing to the beach!!

woo hoo!

and the house is pretty clean!

post #32 of 39
I've done cloth diapers while camping with a toddler; I just brought extra plastic bags so I could double-bag them so they didn't smell on the way home. No big deal.

I use Rubbermaid totes also -- one large one for some stuff, and one smaller one (this usually gets non-perishable foods). I found it really helpful to have some things that are just for camping, like dishcloths and oven mitts -- they're very different colors from my usual kitchen stuff, so when we return from camping, they are washed, dried, and immediately put back in the camping tote. No forgetting them. I keep ziplock bags, trash bags, toilet paper, etc. in the camping tote too, so I don't have to remember to pack them each time, and that also goes for some non-perishable foods like salt and pepper. I'm not nearly as organized beforehand as some though -- there is some great info on this thread!
post #33 of 39
this is a great thread! I love the rubbermaid bin idea. We use soft sided duffle bags for most of our stuff which works okay, I'd like to do the kitchen stuff in rubbermaid as soon as we get back from our trip this week.
post #34 of 39
we have a mini van but also a car top carrier which has plenty of room for all our gear.
post #35 of 39
Thread Starter 

sleeping bags VS blankets from home

I haven't invested in sleeping bags --since we've always co-slept we just cram onto one big mattress. But we are shifting and I wonder about sleeping bags...

Any suggestions for a type (I am all about all cotton/natural fabrics) and the sleeping bags we had from pre kids are all nylon and fleece...

post #36 of 39
For you mamas with older or more sane children , definitely check out this mama's way of involving her kids in the packing -- brilliant (via soulemama).
post #37 of 39
I too have some designated crates and storage containers just for camping. I have a "kitchen" one with camping dishes/silverware, etc. as well as the camp stove and propane, aluminum foil, paper towels, skewers, and anything whatsoever to do with food. I pack the dry goods in the cooler when it's empty and in storage. Our sleeping bags and tents are all in drawstring bags (the sleeping bags are in drawstring trash bags actually, becuase it keeps dust out). I have a retractable clothesline, washcloth, some small towels, and clothespins in a 2 gallon bucket in case I need to hand wash clothes. Pretty much I just have to pack our toiletries and perishable foods, and everything else is already packed. It's all stored on two shelves in our garage.
post #38 of 39
We haunted yard sales and found large duffles to pack in. They are more "squishable" than rubbermaid bins, and this really helped when we were camping with 3 kids out of a Dodge Stratus.
post #39 of 39
This thread is great! We are going camping in a few weeks and it has been a loong time since I camped with a little teeny one (almost 1). ...and never camped with THREE kids before. Lol. I can't remember what I need to bring with me!

Loving this thread. :
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