What do you do with your kids when...

Discussion in 'Camping with Kids/Pets' started by dannyv11, May 21, 2013.

  1. dannyv11

    dannyv11 Member

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    .... no, its not another question about doing it! :)

    I have two boys a 2 yo and one at 11 months. My DW and I have issues with what to do with the kids when setting up and taking down the pup. Setup takes less time and is less of a concern. However, packing up takes a bit longer.

    We just got back from the IN Dunes State Park and I wanted to make a rash decision to go to the dark side because it was not a fun experience packing up.

    How do you handle your young kids when setting up and tearing down? I was stuck doing all the work on the camper and loading our stuff and DW was stuck with all the work dealing with 2 fussy, screamimg and squirming kids.

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  2. jmcclung11

    jmcclung11 Active Member

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    I used to set the camper up while the DW watched the kids. Then, we switched and she did all the inside stuff; make beds, etc.

    Now the kids are older and usually just play and keep themselves entertained while we both set up. Kids just get in the way! [:D]
     
  3. ridenred333

    ridenred333 New Member

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    Have you though of like a pack n play for 11 month old. They would stay in pup why she packed up stuff inside then I would do outside. Then once everything was ready to me moved from inside to the tv she would take them on a walk or something and I would finish so they were out of the way. A lot of times the night before I would pack some things up that I knew we weren't going to use the next morning before breaking camp.
     
  4. scubacamper

    scubacamper Well-Known Member

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    We have 2 DD's 3 & 5 and even when we tent camped this last year and they were both a year younger my DW takes them for a walk or to the playground while Daddy packs things up or sets up the campsite. Usually when we arrive I put the oldest to work setting out the chairs and anything I think she can help with, but the younger one Mom gets her engaged with something like setting up lunch. We normally arrive at the site about noon so lunch is something that she can help with while I get the other things done.

    Best of luck

    Doc
     
  5. Misc99

    Misc99 New Member

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    If they were screaming maybe a tank was low. Sleep? or Food? If it is sleep, it will only get better as you camp more and they get older. None of us sleep well the first night though. If it is food, that is an immediate remedy you can do. At that age they need to be occupied. That would be the time to pull out things for them to do like
    sidewalk chalk
    dish washing bucket and let them "wash toys, or play dishes", but this could keep them occupied for awhile.
    playdough
    Special toys that only come out at this time
    play cars or trucks in the dirt...then maybe wash them???
    If it works and you have to as a last resort...electronics.

    Slowly ease them into helping you.

    It would be sad for you to go to the dark side so soon. You have some great years ahead camping in a PUP with your kids, but you know your situation best.
     
  6. xshield

    xshield New Member

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    Buy one of those portable dog pens. [}:)] Just kidding. We did what others have done. Split the setup. I do the outside and the DW does the inside. Of course that sounds so sexist that women can't set up the outside. I would gladly set up the inside but my DW tells me I don't do it right. She wins...I set up the outside stuff only.
     
  7. Morgan23

    Morgan23 Member

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    Or if you have a DVD player or some such, put them in the car and let them watch a movie. Our kiddos are older so they can be (somewhat) helpful. But when they were littler I would often take them to the playground or for a walk around the CG while Dh did most of the outside setup. Then we'd switch as others posted about doing.

    I also second the pack n play for the 11mo old. It's hard to tell very young littles to keep out of the way, and there's quite a few things that can be very dangerous about packing up/setting up. I would feel more comfortable if my kids were safely penned up during hitching up/lowering the roof/etc..
     
  8. Yooperwannabe

    Yooperwannabe Active Member

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    Two words; DUCT TAPE!!!!!! Seriously though, it will get better but for now you and your wife will have to take turns.
     
  9. CamperMike

    CamperMike Active Member

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    My wife rarely goes camping, so I usually have to set up/take down by myself. I have found that my 2 year old is quite content to watch a DVD while I set the site up or take it down. It's much safer that way than letting her run around and possibly get hurt. My 6 year old son also often watches the DVDs, but sometimes he is outside while I set up.
     
  10. taxguy

    taxguy Sandusky, OH

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    Bicycles or scooters are the first thing unloaded or packed. Our boys are now 8/10/12. When they were younger, we have let them play their portable game systems or watch video in the TV.
     
  11. Misc99

    Misc99 New Member

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    Don't forget books...sorry the teacher in me is coming through. Libraries also have ones on CD or.....tape. I think it is one of the reasons our kids became such good readers. When we took road trips, they would have books and sometimes an audio version to go with it.
     
  12. dannyv11

    dannyv11 Member

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    These are all great suggestions! I don't know why I didn't think of some of these. I guess I wanted to try and keep some of the luxuries of home away. That may work with older kids that can help out. For now, I'll take the dvd, pack and play, toys and books. And save DW and myself a lot of frustration.

    Thanks to everyone who replied so far!!!

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  13. JeepMama

    JeepMama New Member

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    When we were tenters, our boys were about 3 and 1 yrs. old. We had them stay in their carseats in the TV while we set up or broke camp. We learned the hard way to have them 'buckled' in the TV, after our youngest got into the dogs anxiety meds(in a child proof bottle) while we were breaking camp. He was fine, but we spent hours at the ER with him hooked up to monitors.

    When they were a bit older, we did as another suggested, my husband set up outside while I watched the boys and we switched and I took care of unloading indoor stuff.

    Now they are 8 and 6 and bikes and scooters are unloaded first. Also, we try to get a site near the camp grounds play area, so we have a visual of them playing while we are at our camp site.
     
  14. RichN

    RichN New Member

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    My 6 and 3 year old sit in the Jeep and wait.
     
  15. BigBaron

    BigBaron Dreaming of Tommy's chili cheeseburgers...

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    We taught them how to set up. With the attention span of a gnat, they started playing after a minute or two. [:D]
     
  16. kelknight84

    kelknight84 New Member

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    We put our 2 and 4 yo's in their carseats and put a dvd in.
     
  17. RockyRoo

    RockyRoo Just because you CAN doesn't mean you SHOULD

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    Definitely a divide and conquer situation at those ages. Either a playpen and you both work while they may fuss a bit, or one of you takes them while the other works and then switch off when needed. Don't worry, this stage only lasts for a little while, before you know it they will be helping and/or entertaining each other. It won't be long before they are doing the setup and you are relaxing with a beer supervising. Enjoy it while you can, if you think this is bad wait till they get opinions and start sharing them. [;)]
     
  18. heckufaguy

    heckufaguy New Member

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    You get a box of snakes, and dump em out. While the kids chase the snakes to put them back, they stay busy.

    (just kidding.. a 'vacation' movie joke)
     
  19. fmbhappycamper

    fmbhappycamper PuP Power

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    read this somewhere!
    Sitting in my Campsite and a Family pulls in with a PopUp. Mother jumps out and stands in the corner of the site. Dad backs in with hand signals from Wife [:D] All Kids get out while Dad levels and sets stabilizers. One kid is walking the Dog another is gathering kindling and the oldest is helping set up Camp while Mom does the inside. Very Impressed I tell the Father "wow, you have quite the Camping Family, they are Awesome, How did you do it?"
    Proudly, the Father says "No one can use the bathroom until Camp is set up" [8D]
     
  20. Twisty

    Twisty New Member

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    It won't be very long and the kids will be helping, and you 2 may ask to each other "Remember when the kids couldn't help and we thought about quitting the popup?"
    Then a time will come when you 2 may ask each other "Remember when the kids were so young and had just learned how to help us set up camp?"
    And then a time will come when you 2 may ask each other "Remember when the kids went camping with us? Now they have kids of their own and..."
    I'm 51 now. I was 25 about 20 minutes ago...
     

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