by Lyn Lomasi, Write W.A.V.E. Media Staff
As my family and I sit here planning our next camping trip, all I can do is laugh, remembering our first camping experience years ago. We were so unprepared. What happened is pretty hilarious now, but at the time it wasn't all that funny. You see, we really had no clue what we would need, but we sure thought we did. It's a good thing our accompanying friends had a few things we were lacking. Unfortunately, we did have to leave the campsite for the rest of the items, which would not have been as simple if we hadn't had friends with us or if we had chosen a more remote location.
It's obvious that a tent is needed for camping, unless a cabin or camper is being used. However, what wasn't so obvious to us during our first camping trip was to bring extra stakes and tie downs. Sometimes what comes with the tent just won't cut it, as we found out when one section of our tent sagged no matter what we did. Borrowing a friend's extra stake and tie down solved the problem.
Another item we mistakenly left out was sunscreen. At the time, we were not very good at wearing sunscreen to begin with, so it's no surprise we forgot that, but on a camping trip sunscreen is essential. Being outdoors all day without protection from the sun is not good for the skin at all. I've even heard that putting it in the hair can help prevent sun streaks and split ends. Luckily, our friends had some extra sunscreen we could use.
Thicker, longer socks was something we hadn't considered at all for our camping trip list. This was one of the items we had to leave the camp site for. Since we were camping in an area that could have contained ticks, we really should have had better socks on, as well as packed additional ones. Thankfully we were not too far outside of town, so it was fairly easy to pick up some appropriate socks.
In addition to the items above, there were several more items we forgot during that trip. Because of that experience, we now know exactly what to bring, so I guess it was good for a lesson.
Some of the items on our main camping trip supply list are: tent and extra stakes and tie downs, tarp, hammer, pillow/sleeping bag/extra blanket/air mattress/sheets for each person, air pump, air mattress repair kit, compass and map for each person, folding chair for each person, folding table, fishing poles/bait/line/bucket, lots of water (some for drinking, some for cleaning), cooking source, cookware, utensils, knives, food, fire source, trash bags, plastic tablecloth, dish soap, foil, tissue, paper towels, dishes and silverware, plastic bin for dish-washing, personal care items, clothing for all weather types, fire extinguisher, first aid kit and various other items, depending on the camping trip.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
You've seen it before. A child is running around the establishment and playing like he's at home while the parents do nothing. Perhaps that's your child or maybe you want some behavior tips to prevent it from ever happening to you. My four kids wouldn't even dream of trying this stunt. But I've witnessed it enough times in other children. While fast food restaurants are more lax than some, it doesn't mean your kids shouldn't behave themselves. As a side note, some kids have been diagnosed with mental, physical, and behavioral issues. These tips are for the average child who has knowledge and control of emotions and behaviors.
The restaurant is not a playground. On a recent visit to an area Chipotle, my kids and I were shocked at the behavior allowed by two kids. They ran past our table countless times and I was honestly afraid they were going to get hurt. Their mom only paid attention to the friend she was talking to. The scariest part was when they took their drinks along for the run. What would have happened if one of them had choked on the straw or dropped the drink and slipped on the floor? This mom should have made it clear from the beginning that the kids were to sit down. By sitting the kids down right away and intercepting when necessary, it teaches them that the table is where they belong.
Don't send mixed messages. Kids will be kids. But for a parent to not even try at all saddened me. It's probably the very reason they felt it was alright to run around. It was not until well into their time at Chipotle that this mother finally told the kids to sit down. However, the way she did it was not respectful at all. Once they ran around for at least thirty minutes, they were told to sit down and shutup. What? These poor kids were probably confused at that point. Why was there no problem with the running before? Nothing changed.
Be mindful of your own attitude and behavior. If you want your kids to behave themselves, you should do the same. Don't tell your kids to act one way, while you are doing the complete opposite. The kids weren't the only ones being disrespectful. Their mother spent time loudly talking to her friend, doing the same on the phone, and also walking around all over the establishment. No wonder the kids didn't know how to act in public. No matter how many people gave her 'the look' she just kept on about her business. She practically ignored her kids until the point at which her friend left. Obviously, they were both mimicking her behavior and also trying to get her attention. At not even two years of age, it was obvious one child had already learned these tactics well. The other was entirely too old to be going along with his baby sister on this mission.
Keep the kids fed and entertained. Perhaps the most disturbing thing to me about the whole Chipotle experience was the fact that the mother did not even buy the kids anything to eat or drink. Why bring your children to a fast food restaurant if you aren't going to feed them? They only got the drink because the Chipotle workers supplied them to these kids for free. No wonder they were restless. They were probably bored, hungry, and thirsty. Kids behave best when all their basic needs are met. This means they need to have some nourishment and they need something to do. Some coloring books and crayons or a couple books or small toys could have solved this mom's issue. Oh and she could have maybe fed them too, since they were at, you know, a restaurant...
*I originally published this via Yahoo Contributor Network