Camping is a great way to bond as a family, playing games, singing, talking and telling stories around a campfire. It helps teach kids the value of working together to pitch a tent or cook a meal. And it’s a great way to get kids outdoors, watching the moon and stars instead of electronic games and videos.
One of the best things about backyard camping is that you can make it as simple or as elaborate as you wish. Keep it close with just your family members, or invite extended family or friends to participate in your backyard adventure. You can prepare your food in advance or you can cook it on an outdoor grill or fire pit.
For a basic backyard campout, you’ll need a tent, sleeping bag, bug spray, flashlight for each camper and a lantern. Add a couple of camping chairs and a card table, as well as paper products, plastic utensils and a secure trash bin to keep your camp site clean. Finally, don’t forget a cooler stocked with food, drinks and, of course, everything you need to make s’mores.
During your campout, encourage everyone to go tech-free and spend your time together stargazing, telling stories and singing campfire songs. You can even collect rocks, look for bugs or go on a scavenger hunt, all while a few feet from your back door. When it gets dark, play a game of flashlight tag before heading to bed and calling for lights out.
We all need a break from the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives, as well as the electronic devices that keep us from connecting with each other. Studies show that when you get out into nature, it helps reduce stress and keeps us healthy. And if you don’t have the time or money for a family getaway, it’s easy to create a calm space in your own backyard.
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