There I am sweating as if I were in hot yoga as I run all over the house gathering everything to pack for camp, and my husband and sons announce that they MUST buy cleats for football?!?!? Apparently, they (I don’t know who they is) always run out of the good ones come ‘back to school’ time, so it is imperative that we snag our cleats in July. What can I say? I have to finish the camp packing. Period.
Back to the business at hand. Many of you have kids at camp already, but as 2nd session approaches for a number of camps, there is a whole new set of parents prepping. That is me. Prepping and over-prepping and checking everything off my list twice – ok maybe thrice.
I am armed with 2 kids and 4 duffles and a permanent marker. As I am in a labeling frenzy, I am fielding emails full of questions following Bunk 1 featuring my What (NOT) to pack for your son camp list.
I decided to ask the boys a few questions about what I should pack:
- Pre-addressed envelopes. I always do this and obviously it is appreciated because the less time wasted during rest hour writing home is better. However, this year, I am making a template and letting them address their own envelopes before leaving. A) it is a good time killer in the heat and B) my kids really do not understand the art of snail mail.
- Magazines not books. Summer reading is not a high priority at camp, and I would bet that if you packed the books, you may be purchasing replacements when your kids arrive home. **NOTE: If your child actually reads books at camp, you are a better parent than me. Comic Books, MAD magazine (remember that?), and SI (kids) are favorites around here. At least they are reading something.
- Ipod with music and optional speakers (for the older ones). Music is a must for waking up to air guitar to getting pumped for color war, music sets the stage. My boys are smart, they save up iTunes gift cards from the holidays to purchase jams before camp. ** Thanks to my good friend, Brian over at Bunk 1, I am reminded that sending an iPod to camp is doing so at your own risk. As in, it may not come back home. I personally have one son more responsible than the other, so one takes an old outdated version – can you guess who?
- The infamous egg crate. Every year, I shlep to Walmart (it is the ONLY time of year I go) to purchase an egg crate to help make the mattress more comfy. I see this item as disposable as it really cannot be washed, and I am not sure who has made a home inside there during camp.
- Clip-on fan, Flashlight, and extra batteries. That’s it mom. We do not need anything else especially that collared shirt for the mixer/social – we are not going to wear it anyways.
There you have it. I am sure my friends with daughters have a much more lengthy list (plus they are not concerned about the potential football cleat shortage).
As the boys sit on the duffles and jump up and down in effort to smash everything so we can zip them up, I think: There is a business here. The camp packing business. Next summer, I am writing a business plan and we are going to work.
**One last tip: Pack the linens in reverse order so your son (or daughter) takes them out one by one and makes their bed without dumping them all on the floor to get the first item.