When I was 10, my parents sent me to summer Girl Scout camp. I was going to be gone for a week and I was terrified. I was going alone, I knew no one who would be there and to say I felt nervous is putting it mildly. The first night was painful! I was afraid of the dark and we had no lights to leave on and I had no one to tuck me in or read me a bedtime story. By the time breakfast was over, I had made a few friends, we had gone swimming and learned to canoe. I was having the time of my life and when the week was over, I was sad to be leaving! My own kids are veterans of summer sleep away camp and they look forward to it every year. One thing we have learned over the years is you better know how to pack well. There is nothing worse then showing up at camp and not having your essentials. Here is a great list I use when my kids are leaving for camp.
Summer Camp Packing List
- Bedding: Some camps have cots or bunks while others have just a floor mat. I always pack a sleeping bag and an extra blanket, a sheet, pillow and extra pillowcase. Be sure to use luggage tags for the sleeping bag and mark everything with your child’s name or initials.
- Clothing: It is better to pack too much than not enough clothing. Make sure you have at least 2 changes of clothing for each day. Pack plenty of shorts, tees, tank tops, pajamas, jeans, sneakers, rain or hiking boots, underwear, bras, socks and shower shoes. Also send along 2 bathing suits, a beach towel, a cover up or robe and flip flops. They will need a rain coat, a light jacket, a hat, bandannas, sun glasses, and a sweatshirt.
- Toiletries: In addition to soap, shampoo and deodorant, you need a few other items as well. Also pack sunscreen, bug repellent, a laundry and cosmetic bag, feminine products, lip balm, shaving cream and razors.
- Miscellaneous: Be sure to send snacks if allowed, paper, pens or pencils and stamps and spending money if they have a canteen. Send along a small backpack for day trips, an insulated lunch tote and a reusable water bottle.
- Luggage: I send the kids with durable luggage like a rolling carry on bag. This is easy for them to maneuver and it should have enough room for most of their items. I always packs their bedding separately, usually rolled up in their sleeping bag.
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Do your kids go to summer camp, and if so, for how long?