So this weekend we braved the rain and the wind to flex our camping skills (in my uncles back garden!) with the 3 year old and the 14 month old in tow. It was a first run at camping in Ireland with kids for three out of the four of us, my husband being a seasoned camper but myself and the two girls having pretty much never stepped inside a tent in our lives. We got a tent recently with the intention of hitting for places like west Cork and Kerry over the summer, the idea of being able to just pack up the car on a Saturday morning and go camping with the toddlers where the sun was shining without having to worry about accommodation really appealed. So our annual family gathering in Dublin was the perfect place to test the waters with our camping abilities.
I’ll preface this by saying that, despite it being the middle of July, it was really windy and it rained on and off for most of the evening and night. The two girls were hopped up on sweets and excitement having spent the evening with their cousins (the big lady) and chasing the poor dog (the small lady). We’d also been to the Zoo that day so we figured they would be pretty tired….
The small lady went down around 8pm, we left her to her own devices playing with two soothers and about an hour later she was asleep. Quietly the three year old went to bed about 10.30pm, all cosy and tired after a long day. So we left her happy and sleepy and went back into my uncle’s house to rejoin the festivities….herein lies our ultimate camping mistake. What we should have done is stayed outside the tent until the two had fallen asleep. Instead my husband went out to check them (honestly less than 5 minutes after we left them) and he was greeted by a chorus of crying. The big lady had got a fright from the wind and she woke the small lady with her crying. So into the tent I went to keep them company, the big lady settled pretty quickly after that but the small lady….well lets just say at 1am she was still practicing standing and trying to climb over me to whack her big sister in the face to get the fun going.
So 1am I bailed with the small lady and into a double bed in my cousin’s house, for fear we would repeat the earlier mistake in reverse.
So there you go, a valuable lesson on camping, from the worlds least seasoned camper ever!