July 21, 2014

Camping’s So Good for Kids ~ And Moms

Me, Steve, Eli, and Elizabeth

Don’t you just love the fresh mountain air first thing in the morning? The birds urgently tweeting from the trees, the lazy hum of the bugs starting to rise and the swish of the branches as the breeze picks up? The sun through the trees makes everything a vivid living green ~ it always makes me think of “the force that through the green fuse drives the flower.”

We went camping this past weekend and had a blast! We got a new-to-us fifth wheel camper recently and it’s perfect. Much better put together and more spacious than our last Airstream. We drove up on Friday to the mountains west of Laramie and drove around till we found a good spot ~ fairly flat, by a creek, with not anybody around us. We spent the weekend tending the campfire, roasting hot dogs and s’mores, fishing, reading Harry Potter, and generally lazing about. Came home Sunday morning.

What it brought home to me yet again was the value of camping for kids. They learn to shake off bumps and bruises. They’re not in an environment where everything has cushioned rounded corners. They’re out of their comfort zone so they try things they wouldn’t normally. They have boredom time, too, which is very important. And maybe most importantly, they gain confidence in their bodies. This weekend, my eight-year-olds practiced keeping a fire going, walking on logs, and chopping wood with an ax.

It’s easy as a mom to try and protect your kids all the time, but camping is a convenient and safe way to put you out of your comfort zone and let your kids explore a bit.

And then there’s always that WONDERFUL shower you take when you get home!


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