I may be outing myself as a bad mommy but here goes: despite repeated pleas I’ve never taken my kids camping.
It’s not that they’ve never been camping. My boys have had plenty of scouting overnights under canvas. And I’m sure the day will come when my daughter will go off with her Girl Scout troop. We’ve just never done the full-on family trip where we pack up and pitch a tent at a campsite for a few days.
I’m afraid that my camping aversion is depriving my kids of precious childhood memories. So what’s my big issue? First, there’s the food. My camping friends conduct elaborate meal planning meetings weeks in advance of a trip. They have to shop, lug everything home and put it away–only to load it back up into coolers and haul it way out into the woods. Then they cook, eat and clean under completely primitive conditions. I suppose this is somebody’s idea of fun, but it sounds like too much work to me. Plus, all the gear that needs to be moved—tents, sleeping bags, tarps, lanterns—is completely overwhelming. Frankly, I had far too nomadic a childhood to relish any activity that requires this much packing and moving. For me, the point of vacation is to let somebody else do the work. (more…)