Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Backyard Camping

July 2, 2018

Break out the tent and brush up on the ghost stories. Tonight the campsite is in the backyard!
You don’t need a lot of space to have a lot of fun. In our condo days, we camped out on the patio more than a few times in a fort.

Sometimes the desire for a camp out can’t match up with the time it takes to get “out there.” Or maybe the kids just aren’t ready for an entire night in the wilderness. Or more importantly, maybe you aren’t. That’s where backyard camping comes in. Whether it’s a family “outing” or just the kids braving the harsh elements of the backyard, it’s easy and fun to camp close to home.

A tent is a good thing to have, although it’s not completely necessary. Kids have been known to love making forts, and with just a little ingenuity, those ubiquitous blue tarps can be turned into a great tent. Sleeping bags, too, are important, but not completely necessary–blankets and comforters work just fine, as long as the nighttime temperatures stay warm enough. An inflatable mattress could help keep the kids comfy, too.

One of the best parts of backyard camping is home is just a few steps away. Younger kids who have never slept outside can easily make it back to their own beds if the need arises. Or, if the ghost stories prove just a bit too effective, the kitchen lights and a bit of hot cocoa might be just what’s needed. Also, if the weather makes an unforeseen turn to rain, you can clear out a room in the house and continue the expedition indoors.

A campfire might not be possible in the backyard, but a fire pit or a barbecue always is. Hot dogs and hamburgers are an eternal camping favorite, even in the wilds of the backyard. For something different, try using foil packs in the fire. Just layer thin sliced potatoes, vegetables, seasonings, and chicken breast in the foil, wrap, and place over the fire.

And in the morning you can dash in the house, grab the bacon and eggs and make your campfire breakfast in the backyard in no time flat.

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