Camping Trip Aftermath
We couldn’t wait another minute. Our annual family weekend camping trip was coming soon and we all rushed to get ready. The kids love packing. Each has a special over-sized backpack just for outdoor adventures. They do it weeks in advance in case they need to replace an item. Here is what they line up and survey in preparation for the big day,
- Tee shirts (extra because they get wet and dirty)
- Shorts if it is cold and jeans if it is a bit chilly at night
- Flashlight and extra batteries (sure mom and dad bring them, but we like to turn them on sitting around the campfire and pretend we are signaling aliens in outer space)
- Towel in case we swim in the creek. Flip flops to protect feet while swimming
- Handi-wipes are a must and plenty of them
- Music, music, and more music
- A harmonica, guitar, tambourine, or maracas—whatever we can play
- Cookies, chips, snacks to share with fellow campers
- Ice cooler filled with assorted beverages
- Food to cook over the campfire. No, we don’t catch fish
- First aid kit filled with band-aids
- Sandals, sneakers, socks, etc.
- Candy bars or the makings for s’mores
- Sleeping bags and extra blankets
The family had a great time on the camping trip. Because we plan so well, everything was perfect. Nothing was forgotten. We enjoyed singing by the fire at night, sleeping in cozy bags as close as we could get and be safe. Plus there were plenty of photos to share on Facebook when we got back. The weather was pleasant, which made a huge difference. We ate, sang, swam, talked, played “instruments,” talked with other campers, and bonded like mad. We should do it more often. There is only one problem… the aftermath.
As you might expect, you take home with you a giant pile of laundry, the task of removing the lingering smoke smell in the car, kids who want to keep living like they are out in the wilderness…and more. It takes time to adjust to normal life, whatever that is. Despite the filthy sleeping bags (also reeking of smoke), they insist on a few nights sleeping in the backyard even if you can’t see the stars. Mom has to take care of everything like making sandwiches and chilling the sodas. While everyone is playing camper, she is cleaning up. After six loads of laundry, the car must be hosed down. A power washer takes care of this job but it doesn’t work for the interior. How do you get stale campfire smoke out of the nooks and crannies. Any tips?
Here is what I learned. You open all the windows and pray for a breeze. You light a few matches as you sit ensconced in the back seat. A final effort comes from a couple of spritzes from the Febreze deodorant spray bottle. Wait a day and do it all again. If it doesn’t work, take it to the pros at the car wash.