Last week was a great chance to grab the camping gear and head to Esperance (in south Western Australia) for a family holiday – a last trip away before the Christmas craziness begins in earnest. The weather’s warming up but school’s still in, so not too many people around – perfect to enjoy scenery like this all to ourselves:
It is such a beautiful part of the world.
We didn’t go camping when I was a kid, so I’m getting the hang of things. We bought a camper trailer last year (a trailer that folds out into a large tent with storage and camp kitchen built in). We’re not really roughing it with a lovely double bed in there, but there’s still a lot to organise before a big trip.
Lists are your friend!
Even if you’re not a list person, they are essential for holiday/camping organization. After forgetting pillows and a quilt one trip, I’m refining my lists and totally rely on them.
There are the standard lists that apply to every trip (with some variations):
- Cooking supplies
I’ll publish my full list soon! Then there are the trip-specific lists, such as swimmers/hats/beach toys for the beach, wet weather clothes in winter etc. And most importantly:
No food = no happy campers!
Food! I start with a menu plan – listing out the dinners for each night (which always includes my chicken fajitas!) and a list of options for breakfast, lunch and snacks. Then I list out all the ingredients for each meal, sorting them into the following categories:
- Camping Fridge (yes, a bit of a luxury!)
- Esky/Cooler/Ice box
- Pantry box
- Breakfast box
- Snack box (I like to keep snacks separate so little people aren’t distracted by them at meal times!)
Plastic storage tubs are your friend! I have a few different-sized ones (purchased from Big W) that fit neatly in the boot of our car. In the lead up to the trip, I set them out in the kitchen and fill them as I finish the shopping and get organised.
I try to pre-prepare as much as I can. The day before, as I’m clearing out the fridge (so no stinky surprises when I get back), I set aside one shelf for what needs to go in the camping fridge and one for the esky/cooler. So much easier to grab everything from a single shelf in the morning and not having to check off lists at the most stressful time of the trip!
Write a list of all the last minute items!
The day before the big trip, I pack all our clothes and food that doesn’t need to be chilled. On the morning, I pack all the chilled food and any last minute items, such as:
- Toiletries bags
- Favourite teddies
- Phone chargers
- Water bottles
Write down all those last minute items, otherwise something will be forgotten.
Don’t forget batteries!
Lastly, if you’re going on a long road trip and using electronics (we don’t go without out LeapPad) to keep the kids quiet, make sure they’re fully charged, have headphones and spare batteries.
There’s nothing worse than getting to a campsite in the middle of a national park with minimal facilities only to discover you’ve forgotten something (luckily, this time, the worst thing we forgot was sour cream for the fajitas!). Plan ahead and get maximum enjoyment from your camping holiday!
Big W stock a great range of camping products, and everyday products to help you organise your camping trips.
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Big W (where I shop regularly). As always, all opinions expressed are purely my own.