Camping Tips From the Indoorsy (Guest Post)

Posted by Swati on Jul 5, 2010 in Guest Posts, Tips for Single and Partnered Parents |

Good day fellow non-campers (and campers who look upon us luxury-hotel-preferring-mannequins with a mix of pity and kindness)…my wonderful blogger friend Naomi de la Torre, mother of two year old and five year old boys and proprietor of the Organic Motherhood With Coolwhip blog, has graciously agreed to write a guest post for us and I am so, so happy to have her visiting us!  Her musings on motherhood are funny, silly, honest, and revealing (sometimes more revealing than you expect :-) !)…so check out what she wrote below about her adventures in camping…and then check out her blog!

Camping Tips From the Indoorsy

If there is anything that I hate, it’s camping. I know, I know. I’m sure there are about 8 billion avid campers out there that are just chomping at the bit to tie me to a tent pole and cover me with leeches and frog innards. But seriously. What exactly is fun about being a million miles from civilization, with no hair dryer, sand in your underwear, a pile of rocks as a bed, and no way to communicate with the world, not even Wifi?

It is beyond me. Really. But ever since we had kids, my husband has been begging and pleading with me to go camping. He even pulled out all the stops and offered to put on that tiger thong I got him as a gag gift one year. And well, that was pretty hard to resist.

So … finally, a few years ago I relented. What could be so bad about a couple of days roughing it in the Great Outdoors? It might even be nice, right? Sunshine. Afternoons by the river. Cool breezes. Campfires. Hot smoky delicious BBQ…

Yeah, all that might have been nice if you didn’t also add torrential rainstorms alternating with three-digit-temperatures, a collapsed tent, port-a-potties that resembled the inside of Uncle Lester’s colon, hour long lines for the shower, and a WWIII style fire ant and chigger infestation.

Needless to say, I wasn’t a camping convert.

But somehow, I did get roped into returning every year since. Because the kids loved it. And I’m a sucker for the children.

This year, we decided to rough it a little less and we rented a cabin. The cabin was Nirvana. It had central AC, a mini-fridge, a two-burner stovetop, cabinets for food storage, real beds, and (most importantly) its very own bathroom.

Unfortunately, the bathroom came in EXTRA handy this year because we all got struck down with some kind of horrific stomach bug that gave everyone bad gas and state-of-the-art diarrhea.

Have you ever camped with a bunch of people suffering from bad gas and state-of-the-art diarrhea? It’s a special experience.

Starting from the road trip where your two-year-old blows out his diaper all over his car seat and you aren’t able to get into your cabin until several hours later. So you spend the first hour of your camping trip hosing toxic green diarrhea off your car seat by the side of the road with all the help of a leaky spigot and a pack of Wet Wipes. Yeeeeeaaaaaah. These are good times. Are you jealous yet?

Then you spend the rest of the trip either running to the bathrooms (which are NO WHERE by the way when you are in the middle of the forest) or trying to act like you didn’t crap yourself while your family and hundreds of other campers look on and pretend not to notice the green slime oozing out of your bathing suit.

And so, thanks to my very special personal experience, I am here to give you just a few camping tips from the indoorsy type:

  • If you plan to go camping, make sure to pack plenty of extras. You never know what your experience will entail and being extra prepared is always a benefit. Extra swimsuits, extra toilet paper, extra Imodium AD, and most especially extra car seats for both of your children. Just in case they both get a raging case of diarrhea en route. This way, you can just throw away the diarrhea car seats and not spend half your trip smelling rotting diarrhea.
  • Also bring an extra tent in case your tent shreds apart in the torrential rainstorm that is bound to happen even if the weather predicts sunny skies straight for the next three months.
  • Make sure to pack a full first aid kit in case you get attacked by a colony of fire ants and all their ant brethren from the adjoining four states.
  • Pack no less than 75 packages of Wet Wipes and 62 cans of Lysol. Trust me that you will need them all when you are dealing with the aftermath of previously mentioned diarrhea blowouts.
  • No matter how much your children beg you, do not spend time in the stagnant water at the edges of the creek looking for tadpoles. The thousands of chigger bites you will discover several days later all over your ladyparts will most certainly be enough to require hospitalization and years of therapy.
  • Any camping trip that ends with a torrential rainstorm and a visit from the park rangers to inform you that if you don’t leave the park within three minutes or less, you may be stuck for the next week or so—is always a plus. Consider such events good luck, pop another Imodium AD, and book your camping trip for next year immediately.

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41 Comments

  • liz says:

    good thing i have zero desire to ever camp, and am married to a girly husband, because you definitely wouldn’t be swaying me towards wanting to camp!

  • Swati says:

    Haha! You are so right – this just reaffirmed what my gut already knows :-) !
    Swati

  • Hey Swati! I know, I know, I’ve been very absent in the comment world lately. I’m so sorry!

    Naomi, awesome guest post! My husband and I used to LOVE camping, even though it rained EVERY time we went (I think it’s supposed to happen that way isn’t it?) and 1 time we slept completely naked, not because it was so romantic, but because we were trying to keep the infestation of ticks from hiding in our clothing. We have yet to go camping with the kids. I’m waiting until our daughter is old enough that I don’t fear that her independence will cause her to leave the tent in themiddle of the night and go wandering.

    Great tips though!!! Thanks for sharing!

  • Swati says:

    Hey Lady – good to see you BACK here! LOL on the sleeping nude for bug sense vs. for XXOOO!!@$!!XOO (I bet that’s not what your hubby says…haha! ).
    Swati

  • Amber says:

    HOLY CRAP. I peed my pants. Well, almost. I detest camping. Really? Why would I leave modern convenience to get stuck in the woods? No thank you. But, sadly, my husband loves to camp. Sigh. This list will be super convenient for me.

  • Tracie says:

    Your post is giving me flashbacks to the one time we took the kids camping. Actually, it was what I refer to as a 2-in-1 – first and last. Never. Again.

  • Swati says:

    Amber
    when I was young, my aunt came from India to visit and we took her camping…we packed up 7 hours in because she said the same thing: why would you leave your lovely house and it’s coveniences to do THIS?!
    :)
    Swati

  • Swati says:

    Tracie – LOL – I’ll look forward to more detail about your camping tribulations!!
    Swati

  • KLZ says:

    Not the carseat! For the love of all that is holy, not the car seat! Just thinking of that gives me the shivers.

    Carseat = holy.

  • The last time I went camping I snapped one of my tent poles and ended up having to sleep cramped up in someone elses tent. *shudder* never again.

  • I’ve already determined that I’m not fit for camping. I might camp in the kind of cabin mentioned, but this post leaves me feeling the Comfort Inn is more my speed.

    We had chiggers once in PA because of a mild winter. I had a bite right on my butt. I still remember how that thing itched. I feel very sorry for your lady parts.

  • Buckeroomama says:

    I’ve never gone camping… and I don’t think I’m game enough to try. Heh.

  • Thanks, everyone, for your hilarious comments!!! And thank you, Swati, for inviting me to your fabulous blog. It was so fun guest posting for you!! Hope everyone had a great weekend and I’ll be sending you all individual email replies. xoxoxox

    Naomi

  • Swati says:

    LOL Joey on the butt with chigger bites comment!! I am never camping again either – haven’t been since I was a kid. All I liked about it was smelling breakfast cooking in the morning :-) .

    KLZ – I totally agree – the car seat is sacred ground!

    Swati

  • Dalia says:

    I’m right there with you! Not a camping girl at all. Stick me in a hotel room any day, no tent. Not even a cabin. Call me snobby but some people are just not cut out for camping ;) .

  • Motpg says:

    This had me in tears, of laughter and sympathy! Where I live I can get chiggers in my front yard so I don’t even have to leave home for that special experience!

  • Oh, I’m a relunctant camper as it is… but I must, must take my kids camping soon – it’s a formative experience, right? Does it count if it takes place in a nice heated cabin with a hot tub?

    Swati – awesome choice in guest poster – and awesome host, too :) .

  • Oh, you poor thing! You had me at diarrhoea!

  • IASoupMama says:

    Yikes! And this is why we haven’t camped any further than the back yard yet. And I was reluctant for that in the first place…

  • Amy says:

    I will be bookmarking this for the next time my husband starts getting ideas about camping..no way, no how, not happening.

  • Swati says:

    Peryl – YES!!! A hot tub makes for perfect camping with kids :-) …!

    IASoupMama – you know the backyard could work…I see mom slipping back inside to snooze form 10pm to 6am, then sneaking back to the tent at 6:01am!

    Amy – Excellent idea!!
    Swati

  • Joy says:

    And my husband wonders why I said no to taking our daughters camping…Naomi, as always you are hilarious. The next time my husband gets any ideas, I will have to show him this post. I hope you are feeling better.

  • Swati says:

    Joy – I don’t know why the guys always want to go camping!! For some reason, they all think it’s kool to hang out with vermin all night!
    Swati

  • mrsblogalot says:

    OMG! Naomi that was state-of-the-art great!!!!! Swati, remind me to send flowers to you for posting this and getting me out of any future camping trips (-:

  • erin says:

    This is precisely why I’ve never been camping. omg. but this was so good I had to Tweet it from the rooftops. compelling, hilarious, and I can’t wait to hear about your next camping trip!

  • Jillian says:

    What fun seeing the two of you join together!

    I totally agree with Naomi about camping it’s just that I love to be enveloped by the great outdoors and so I forget the dirt from the last trip and plan another. And then I end up spending at least 3 days that I don’t have preparing the food, packing the clothes and making sure that we have enough wipies, flashlights, sugar for coffee, butter for the pan…all the important things that you don’t want to forget. And at night? I can’t sleep for fear of the nature that I have come to enjoy. What a dichotomy I am!

    I have been meaning to tell you how excited I am for you about your book. What a huge reward for all of your work. Can’t wait to follow you along your path to success.

  • PartlySunny says:

    You’re way more determined than I am. I would’ve turned the car around at blowout number one. Which is obviously why I would’ve never been able to cross the ocean on the Mayflower or go west in wagon. Not a pioneer.

  • Swati says:

    Mrsblogalot – you and ME BOTH!!

    Erin – Seriously – I don’t know why people are fascinated by abandoning their homes to go camping!

    Jill – I can’t wait to follow Naomi along too!! I am ready for an autograph :-) !

    PartlySunny: Thanks for coming to my site- LOVE your blog name :-) …I would have failed miserably as a pioneer too!

    Swati

  • Alexandra says:

    Oh, Naomi…and this post right here is why I follow you anywhere you tell me to.

    I am laughing so hard…..partly b/c of the hilarity of this post and also with relief in knowing I am not the only one that HATES camping.

    My poor deprived boys…I just can’t take it. None of it, and all of it. Sooooooooooo not for me, I say as I tie my satin sash around my silky robe in the comfort of my AC house right now. Hmm…I smell food almost ready on my state of the art stovetop….

  • paula says:

    Ha! I wrote a similar post at the same time – great minds! Simply put – I hate nature. It’s vile and my idea of slumming it is a hotel room without a mini bar. Great work, Swati.

  • paula says:

    And of course, Naomi!!!

  • Swati says:

    Alexandra – LOL at this line: “I smell food almost ready on my state of the art stovetop”!! So perfectly stated…

    Hey Paula – I will be over to check out your blog post pronto then!!
    Swati

  • Rosie says:

    Someone once said “My idea of camping is black and white TV”. Always remembered that as a good lesson – definitely NOT on my list of things to do!!!!

  • Swati says:

    Haha Rosie – may have to change that soon to “Camping is not having a flat screen TV” or no one will no what we are talking about :-) !

    Swati

  • Mrs.Mayhem says:

    I choked on my diet coke when I read “trying to act like you didn’t crap yourself.” Naomi, you write about the disgusting better than anyone! Wait – that’s meant as a compliment! SO funny.

  • Holly Bowne says:

    Oh. My. Gosh, Naomi! That is an almost unbelievable experience. You know, I’ve been bugging my hubby for the past 20+ years to take me camping. I’ve only experienced camping as a child, never as an adult. I have these dreamy recollections of my family’s numerous wonderful camping trips. But my hubs has held steadfast to the “I love to hike and spend time outdoors, then go back to the hotel room for a hot shower and a comfy bed” philosophy. It was very interesting reading about your, er…lovely experience. He wins.

  • Hilary says:

    Good thing that I am a person who really loves the outdoors. I am really thankful for reading this post and I do hope that I would be able to read more of your post. Thank you also for the tips.

  • Frances says:

    That is a very nice post, I thank you for being able to post it here. Also, I am thankful that you found time to write and post something here. Looking forward to see more of your articles and tips.

  • Great information! I’ve been looking for something like this for a while now. Thanks!

  • pell grant says:

    Keep posting stuff like this i really like it

  • Superb blog post, I have book marked this internet site so ideally I’ll see much more on this subject in the foreseeable future!

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