Slightly bricking it now: first family camping, first festival camping!(7 Posts)
So I have my lovely bell tent (yes, have been assured that there will be room for bells at the showground where the festival is) and am amassing bits and bobs. We all have something to sleep on and in, sit on and at, and a shiny bivouac to cook with.
I'm a terrible list-maker and my list is running to several pages at the moment! We are taking a 3 yo (who is in the process of potty training, but he'll be back in nappies for the 5 days we're away) and a 8 mo who's crawling and makes an unfeasible amount of mess eating. So we can't really stint on bibs and spare vests. I'm also convinced that it'll rain the entire time, so I'm fretting about mud and everything we own getting soggy. Thinking about taking the small McLaren stroller to give DS1 somewhere to sit and sleep in the evenings, and it's light enough for DH and I to carry over the mud if needs be. (DS2 will be in a sling)
Really, I just need reassurance and top tips for family festival camping. My own brilliant ideas extend only as far as sellotaping glowstix to the guylines every evening, to stop people tripping over, and to help us find our beds at night. I'm mostly just glooming about the dire weather prognosis (camping in the rain is one thing, but camping at a festival where we're all going to be outside all day is another) - what do we do all day with DS1 if it's just too rainy to expect him to stand outside listening to folk music?? I'd hoped to put him on the picnic blanket with magazines, colouring stuff and toys. (It's a fairly small festival, and there is stuff for children, but mostly older than 3 yo.)
We've done a trial family camp, but in lovely weather (and it was still bloody cold at night!) and for one night only. I haven't camped overnight at a festival for over a decade...
We've been taking dd to festivals since she was a few weeks old. She's 4 now. There's NO such thing as bad weather, only the wrong clothes. As long as you have rain gear, wellies and puddles to jump in, you'll be able to manage any rain. It will NOT rain all the time. Even rainy days have breaks to the weather.
So much of it is a mindset. If you do wake up in the morning and it's gloomy, don't start being gloomy yourself. At 3 the constant supply of colouring/toys isn't always necessary. The music/dancing/people watching/wandering etc fills in hours.
Warm at night is very important too for enjoyment's sake.
Just make sure you have lots and lots of dry clothes and bin liners to put wet stuff in. Pack waterproofs and don't worry about entertainment, there is lots always lots to look at.
We all have waterproofs (apart from the baby, but he'll be in the sling a lot, and I can always take him into the beer tent and put him on the waterproof blanket for a crawl) but rain/mud tends to mean you're on your feet all the time, which is what's worrying me. DS1 is also not into dressing-up/masks/face-painting, which is a shame, given that sort of thing tends to be offered to pre-schoolers at festivals.
I know a lot of it's attitude (and I'm a very fair-weather camper). I think DH and I would cope with bad weather if it were just us. DS2 isn't going to want to spend the whole time on a sling under my cagoule, though!
Wondering about spare wellies for DS1 now... Maybe I should just take a huge bottle of gin and stop worrying!
Make life as easy as you can, we took our 4DDs to their first festival last year (Scottish - so wet and cold were a foregone conclusion).
I packed paper plates and plastic cutlery that I just binned after use, so that washing up was minimal.
Meals like pasta and stir through pesto, which I stirred through in the plates meant that I only really had a one pot that I could have got away without washing if it was raining.
They fold down to nothing so have you thought about a wee pop up beach shelter, that the boys can sit in rather than you having to try to find indoor shelter, one of my girls actually zonked in one near the main stage when she got overtired, we just used our fold up picnic blanket as a cosy sort of carpet.
Oh, that's a good idea, the pop-up shelter! No, I don't have one but will think about getting one this week.
Pesto is a must - both boys love pasta and DS1 refuses anything on it other than pesto!
We're going to Greenbelt festival- only 2nd time camping and 1st time at a festival and I am really worried about the weather too! Forecast is not good! I have a 15 yr old and 4 yr old to keep entertained!
One question- we have large 6-8 man tent which is great- will there be room for us to erect our gazebo too- have a feeling we will be cooking under it in the rain!!! This will be a first! Gazebo is currently in its box in garage-we never used it last year- am I daft not to have ago at putting it up tomorrow? We leave Friday!!
Lets' hope for dry weather for most of the time at least!!!
the one thing keeping me cheery about this weekend is the thought of seeing Billy Bragg live on Friday night!!!
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