In the age of intermittent lockdowns and quarantines, we need to find ways to entertain ourselves from the comfort of our homes. For the adventurous, outdoorsy types, this is a challenge. After all, not everyone enjoys being stuck at home for long periods. Unfortunately, social distancing seems to be in the cards for us for the foreseeable future, so we might as well make the most of it.
If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that there is always something to be grateful for. If you have a roof over your head or a backyard your kids and pets can run around in, and if your family is complete and healthy, you’re luckier than more than half of the world’s population. Now is a great time to build unforgettable memories with your family and loved ones. Whether you’re single, dating, married, and/or raising kids, you can create traditions that your significant other and your kids can remember for the rest of their lives.
If you have been blessed to live in a house with a backyard surrounded by trees, then you’ve already won half the battle. But if not, there are ways to create a magical experience as well. Here is a step-by-step guide to creating the ultimate backyard camping experience that your whole family won’t forget.
What You’ll Need
First, gather everything you’ll need for camping. Here is a basic list:
- A tent that can house you and your family members
- Insulated air mattresses
- Fluffy pillows
- Cozy comforters
- Sleeping bags that are rated for the temperature
- Fairy lights or yellow-toned Christmas lights
- White screen background
- Lawn chairs
- Lots of snacks
- Meats for barbecue
- Beer and other drinks
- Firewood during the fall or winter
- Mosquito repellent
- Telescope for star-gazing
Set the Atmosphere at Your Campsite
The atmosphere will make or break your camping experience. Make sure to set the right tone by creating a magical space. Here are some tips for setting up an enchanting campsite:
- Set up your tent at the center of your backyard, at an angle with the best view of the white screen for watching movies and TV shows.
- Your setup should also be in an area where you can have a full view of the stars while laying down.
- Hang up the fairy lights inside your tent, on the nearby trees, or the exterior of your home.
- Make sure you have enough fluffy pillows, mattresses, or sleeping bags for everyone.
- During the winter or cooler autumn or spring evening, set up a campfire. Make sure you have enough firewood to last you for the rest of the night.
- Set up a table filled with snacks and meats you can cook or barbecue. You can have smores too if you’re setting up a campfire.
- The best thing about camping in your backyard is that you can still make use of your kitchen. Purchase kitchen cooktops online that are versatile and can allow you to cook and prepare meals quickly.
- Set up entry mats so your children can get rid of dirt from their shoes before stepping into the tent.
- If you don’t have a backyard, set it up in your living room. You can still make use of the tent, lights, mattresses, pillows, projector, and white screen to create a fairytale-like atmosphere.
Incorporate Fun Activities
Set up an informal program or schedule for your camping experience. Incorporate activities that you and your family enjoy, like games (video games and board games count), a treasure or scavenger hunt, movie night, or even a time to express how you’re all feeling about the pandemic. A camping schedule can look something like this:
- 16:00-17:00 – Campsite setup (you can have the kids participate in this too)
- 17:00-18:00 – Cooking of meals
- 18:00-19:00 – Dinner with the whole family
- 19:00-20:00 – Games (charades, Pictionary, name-that-tune, and others)
- 20:00-22:00 – Movie time (something appropriate for the season, like a holiday film or a romantic comedy if the camping is on February)
- 22:00-22:30 – Star-gazing and open communication time
- 22:30 – Sleeping under the stars
For those camping with kids, you can incorporate the scavenger hunt before it turns dark. Ultimately, the schedule is just a guide—what makes a camping experience fun and exciting is a relaxed atmosphere and a sense of spontaneity.
Don’t Rush to Clean Up in the Morning
If you have kids, let them enjoy the campsite for the rest of the day. It’s not every day that they get to sleep outdoors with their mom and/or dad. Let them run around and maximize the campsite you took so long to set up.
Make Every Moment Count
There are numerous safe ways to build memories with your family and loved ones, even during a pandemic. Just let your creativity run wild and make this a time of your lives you will never forget.