I said not that long ago that glamping was how I preferred to camp although admittedly I’ve only been once, compared to a whole three times in my life in a ‘proper tent’ Basically I’m a camping newbie and the lovely people at Millets thought they’d see if they could change my mind about traditional camping and sent us a tent, sleeping bags, folding chairs and a great care box so that as a family we can go camping over the summer and see if we can be converted! Now lets be honest here, Athena and Arlo think sleeping anywhere other than their own beds is an adventure, and Sam doesn’t need to be persuaded; in fact he’s been pestering me to go camping for months now! So we’ve booked the bank holiday weekend away at a camp site in the New Forest with our best chums and I am actually really looking forward to it! In preparation though I told Sam we better practise putting up the tent “oh no, easy peasy I can do it in 10 minutes” he said. So I held him to it and videod it too! He actually had help in the form of his friend Kyle (and three kids!) whilst my friend Amy and I sat and watched!
The tent that Millets sent is the Eurohike Cairns 5 Deluxe from their range of tents. It is a 5 man tent with a sleeping area and a porch area that is completely enclosed. It even has windows, which I was pretty impressed with! We headed to the local beach that has a big greensward to practise putting it up, much to the amusement of the middle aged couple sat near us who seemed to be thoroughly enjoying the show! The lady even makes a cameo in the video to return a tent pole case that had blown in her direction!
As you can see the wind is rather against the guys but they did a pretty decent job I think in under ten minutes, though the guy ropes will be hammered in when we go camping properly for fear that we blow over to the Isle of Wight from our campsite! I watched from the comfort of one of the folding chairs, which will definitely help keep us comfy as we sit around the camp fire toasting marshmallows! Or attempt to keep the kids out of the campfire more likely. As we didn’t sleep in tent we pitched this time we’ve not yet tried out our Snooze 200 sleeping bags but Athena has been loving walking round the house with one over her head like some sort of soft squishy black ghost!
The care pack that Millets organised for us will make life so much easier, my favourites are the ‘Big Body Wipes’ and the Dry Shower from Muc Off, which smells amazing, and if I’m honest i’d be happy to have one less shower in a a probably horrible communal shower block in favour of a dry shower!
I will do another post after our camping trip updating you all on how we found it. The sleeping area looks plenty big enough for the four of us, and we can leave all our shoes, toiletries and food etc in the zipped up porch bit overnight. The last three times I’ve camped have all been in a two man tent so you had to have all your stuff in with you and ended up sleeping curled up in a corner with everything else taking up far too much room!
In preparation with camping with two small kids I took to one of the most knowledgeable groups of people I could think of to ask for tips and tricks to help, so here’s what some of my fellow parent bloggers have to say:
The two items we found most useful were cereal bars for those unscheduled moments of hunger and a bucket for night time, when the toilet block suddenly seems very far away! – Lucy at The Parent Game
If you’re using wellies/walking boots take a spare pair of socks and pop them over the tops at night to stop bugs getting in! Or moisture! & Most tents have a loop or something similar in roof, so buy a carabiner clip so you can hang a torch or lantern from it at night. Chantelle at Two hearts One roof
Glow sticks for the kids at night time as it gets very dark. You can get them in the pound shop pack of 3 or 4. Torch or headlamp for getting to the toilet block at night time. Football, bats and balls, Frisbee and a bug finding kit (keeps mine entertained all holiday) – Claire at Emmys Mummy
A pop up tent to contain crawlers in is handy for when you’re setting up. Also alcohol, for sanity. – Hannah at Hi Baby Blog
Lots of snacks, drinks cartons that don’t need a fridge, games, Frisbee, cards, books for notes and games, colouring stuff, Uno, head torches, wind up torches or solar nightlights! (So leaving them on isn’t an issue!) – Naomi at Tents and Festivals
I also read through this post about what to pack when camping with kids, will definitely be giving the kids their own torches!
We were sent these items for the purpose of seeing if we can start a beautiful relationship with camping, Thanks Millets, we’ll keep you posted!