Busy Kids Camping Ideas

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We are going on a week long trip to Yosemite this year.Half Dome from Glacier Point

We’ve done this before, but my youngest two were much smaller (think 16-months and just over 2 years) so it wasn’t really a problem to make them take naps, pick up sticks and rocks and play in the dirt.Keeping Kids Busy Camping

I am one of those moms who loves electronics and devices and know people say my children will need therapy because they will probably grow up thinking thier mom didn’t care about them because I put them in front of a TV for entertainment…etc., etc.

Whatever.  Like YOU know what you’re talking about.

Anyway, the chance to get away from those things also means they will have to keep themselves entertained when my knee hurts or little brother has to take a nap.  As a true vacation from most electronics (we’ll still have cameras) I plan on keeping my various aged children entertained with good old-fashioned arts and crafts that the oldest won’t get too bored with and the younger two won’t be asking me to do all the work.

It’s harder than you think (or maybe some of you know!)

Right now I have a three-year old, a four year old and an eight year old.  The 8 yr-old can read, write, color, and do most projects on his own very well once taught.  The 4-year old is currently very frustrated with the fact that she cannot read and write, and scribbles (almost incessantly) so that she feels she has her words and lists and notes down like her momma.  The 3 yr-old just wants to do whatever his brother and sister are doing.

It’s exhausting some days to get these kids to play together.  My old knee “went-out” on me a couple weeks ago and I know it’s going to be difficult, yes-definitely challenging, to go on hikes and (forget it!) bike rides like we were originally planning on doing.

So here I am, planning on spending more time in the tent-cabin playing with my children.

Here’s the list of ideas I’m working with right now.  I will link back to this thread and post photos of what we actually did on the trip.  For now, it’s just a plan and I’m looking forward to going on vacation!

Note: Yosemite has multiple rules and regulations in the park.  We will be respecting those rules.  These ideas are just to get me started on the planning on what I can do with my kiddos, even if it’s around the house on a walk.

1.  Big Leaf Painting by Kleas

I love painting with the kids.  It’s messy and fun, and might as well preserve a memory of a cool leaf we found on the ground or maybe we’ll make stick paintings.  The ideas can go on and on if I remember to bring paint and a flat surface.  Right now, I’m thinking paper plates will do fine.

2. Personalized Nature Pals by Spoonful.com

A seemingly easy idea, I won’t bring a glue gun, but rather some E6000or Aleene’s tacky glue.  I was planning on bringing glue anyway!

3. Camping Scavenger Hunt by The Creative Homemaker or Outdoor Scavenger Hunt by Today’s Mama

I printed out both of these scavenger hunts, and if we have the chance, we’ll try to do both!

4. I hope to find the Easter eggs and we’ll make Fireflies from Apartment Therapy.

5. I’m going to make my own busy bags similar to these Easy Camping Bags by Capital B.

Mine will include puzzles and planned crafts, as well as standard coloring books.  I have to plan for three different ages of children that all don’t have the same capability, but ALWAYS want to do the same thing.

Here’s my list for my busy kids.  Please feel free to share it!  I know it could be used for more than just camping supplies. kids supplies list to keep busyHopefully, at least once a day, I’m hoping to ask questions about the previous day and get them to hold onto memories in an artistic format, as well as taking photos.

There are so many things I could bring that are small, such as beading supplies, but I’m trying to stick with basics of coloring, writing, and story telling, etc.  My hope is to create a scrapbook of their mementos they created while on the trip and place them with the photos when I get them printed.
This post is just a reminder post for the links I need to look up soon.  The week of vacation is coming by fast so I’ll have to get my bags ready pretty quickly!