Roasting marshmallows, singing songs by the campfire, sleeping in tents; camping can be a great family experience.  What’s not so fun about camping? Packing up everything but the kitchen sink, loading it in the family car and driving your kids miles away from home.  We’d like to introduce you to the backyard campout. The same fun of regular camping but with easy access to your bathroom and in case of emergency, your own bed!  With a few of our ideas for kid friendly snacks and games, we’re here to help you plan an easy staycation in the comfort of your own backyard.

Sleeping Essentials

Camping wouldn’t be camping without a tent; but instead of setting it up on the ground, try setting it up inside your Springfree Trampoline. Being off the ground means no worrying about bugs or being flooded by rain or dew in the morning and we can guarantee it’s a lot more comfortable than sleeping on the hard ground.  Don’t use the pegs!  Pack your favourite sleeping bags and pillows and set them up inside the tent for a comfortable night’s rest.

Backyard Cookout

If you have a fire pit in your backyard you’re already set for roasting wieners and making ‘smores.  For those of us who aren’t as lucky we suggest you use your BBQ to feed the family. A great way to please the entire family is to create a burger or hot dog bar!  Set out a selection of toppings and let everyone pick and choose their favourites.  If the BBQ isn’t an option, pack a picnic! Sandwiches and lemonade in a thermos can be a great way to enhance the backyard campout experience. 

Of course no camping experience is complete without marshmallows.  And we’ve got some great snack ideas that you can prepare ahead of time.  

Campfire Cones

This treat is a twist on the traditional and tasty s’mores we’ve all grown up with, but can be made in the oven or on the BBQ. All you’ll need is some aluminum foil, ice cream cones and your favourite s’mores toppings and you’ve got one kid friendly camping treat, without all of the mess.

Ingredients

  • Ice cream cones or waffle bowls
  • Aluminum foil
  • Mini marshmallows
  • S’mores toppings: peanut butter, sliced bananas, chocolate chips, sliced strawberries, etc.

Directions

  1. Place one cone on a piece of foil and fill with your favourite ingredients.
  2. Wrap each cone tightly with foil.
  3. Place in the oven for 5-7 minutes at 350F or cook on the grill for 5-10 minutes, turning halfway through.

 

S’mores Trail Mix

Ingredients

  • 1 cup mini marshmallows
  • 1 cup mini pretzels
  • ½ cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup Chex cereal
  • ½ cup Reese’s Pieces

Directions

Mix all the ingredients together and place in sealed bags. Enjoy as a snack!

 

Camping Activities

Star Gazing

Once the sun goes down and the stars come out, there’s nothing more relaxing than looking up to the sky to spot the big dipper! A quick search online can help you find a map of the stars.  We’ve even got some on our favourites on our Fun Backyard Activities Board on Pinterest.

Camping Sing-along

Belt out some kid friendly camping tunes. We love “Boom, Boom, Ain’t it Great to be Crazy” , “We’ve got the whole world in our hands”, and “The More we get Together”.  If you’re more adventurous, try belting out something that’s currently on the radio.

Storytelling

A classic camping activity, telling stories is a great way to make family memories.  Have fun by going around from one person to the next creating the story as you go.  Let each person come up with a sentence or two to build up to a scary conclusion!

Flashlight Games

Give everyone a flashlight and have some fun playing flashlight games once it gets dark. Whether it’s flashlight tag, a flashlight scavenger hunt or shadow puppets, flashlights are a great way to entertain your campers.

Backyard campouts are a great way to unplug and enjoy some quality family time. As a staycation or just an opportunity to enjoy your family and backyard that doesn’t involve a lot of planning or money.

Don’t forget to check out our blog for other great DIY backyard activities. 

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