Carry on camping

In my head it was glorious sunshine and the kids running around laughing and playing and us sitting out late chatting, looking at the stars and melting marshmallows...

Jeepers. I keep telling myself I need to slow down. That next week will be less manic so there will be time to relax a little but I never quite get to that point. This week it was preparing for a mad busy chocka block weekend camping in the New Forest then jetting off to Scotland kid-free for a wedding.


It was L's birthday on Friday so as a surprise I booked a camping trip for us all. We used to camp loads pre-kids so this was going to be our first family trip and we were excited to see what the kids thought. Obviously in my head it was glorious sunshine and the kids running around laughing and playing and us sitting out late chatting, looking at the stars and melting marshmallows. Katy world. Instead it peed it down and we were pretty much confined to the four canvas walls.


I packed everything but the kitchen sink and we set off in the pouring rain heading for the New Forest. The kids were separated in the back with the tent and we were all stuffed with duvets and pillows (I needed a little luxury).


It was a military operation getting our tent set up. I hate this bit as it normally ends up with us falling out after telling each other they're doing it wrong and one of us declaring the tent pole would be going where the sun didn't shine but astonishingly we got on smashing, there were no crossed words and best of all the kids were so elated. They were running around all excited and giggling. It was so cute. 


I'd baked some cupcakes for L's birthday, along with bringing along her presents all wrapped up from the girls and me. Within 10 minutes G dropped the cake tin upside down after letting it do a few rolls through her arms. I knew immediately the chocolate fudge frosting was knackered, but I was still determined to take them out with us with some candles and matches to sing happy birthday while we were on our day out that I had planned with all of L's favourite things. 


Well the fact it was peeing it down from the moment we left the camp on the walk to the train station, while we were on the train, on the walk to the ferry, whilst on the ferry and when we walked along Hengitsbury Head, there was no hope of us getting the candles alight.


We ended up taking a land train off the beach in the hope we would get dry quicker but we were now drenched right through. I revealed the cakes and they looked quite similar to the scene from a fortnight ago when the chaotic one squashed poo into my cream carpet which I was left to clean up as both kids were crying about it and L was standing in the corner gagging and being all pathetic.


I was really looking forward to getting back into the warmth and dry when we got back but no such luck. The heavens had still opened and inside the tent my bed was wet from a dripping roof. I seriously contemplated sleeping in the shower block. The kids were oblivious to all of this and still loving it but I decided that camping is way more fun when you drink alcohol - oh, and you have a dry tent! 


Despite my grumbles L had a wonderful time and we got some lovely pictures from some special memories. We were back home by 9am the next morning and the tent was left at the campsite dumped in the bin but surprisingly the kids didn't complain once. There was none of that monotone whinge. You know the type that makes your blood boil, your ears ring and no matter how diplomatic, calm and patient you are, it continues and it winds you up even more. Nope none of that. Not a drop. They were the most delightful tiny humans ever at the weekend. Long may it continue and not just when camping as I'm not sure I'm ready to experience that again this year.


Check back every other Friday to read Katy’s latest column or catch up with them all here.



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