If your child loves the idea of camping but really doesn’t want to battle the bugs, the elements, or sleep on the hard ground, then glamping is a great alternative. It allows your child to enjoy the great outdoors while surrounded by the comforts of home. Glampers can even set up their camp indoors for nights when Mother Nature doesn’t cooperate.
Dress up your tent with a soft floor of thick blankets and colorful pillows. Inexpensive inflatable pool floats make a nice bed, especially when covered in soft quilts. Camouflage the canvas tent walls with fabric draped from the tent ceiling and tied back against the wall. For a shabby-chic look, purchase old fabric or sheets from a thrift store. Dangle white holiday lights from the tent ceiling and around the door frame to give the ‘room’ a soft glow.
Set up a low table under the stars with pillows for chairs. This will serve as your crafting and dining table. Start with decorating it for your meal with mismatched china, flatware, and a beautiful table cloth. These are great thrift store finds or you can rent them from your local party supply store. When it’s time to move on to the crafts, switch to recyclable table coverings.
Bohemian Lantern - Paint the outside of Mason jars with a 1:6 mixture of paint to water. It will give the glass a thin, muted layer of color. When dry, decorate with puff paint, glitter, rhinestones, etc. Add a battery-operated tea light or a string of lights and seal with a decorated lid.
Shabby Chic Blankets - Use two twin-sized sheets (or blankets for chillier nights) purchased from the thrift store. Prewash and then lay them on top of each other, matching the edge. Cut about four inches from edge of fabric in two-inch-wide strips all the way around. Tie together to form a two-sided blanket.
Dream Catchers - Kits are available online on Amazon or Oriental Trading with everything you need to make a dream catcher. While kits include beads and feathers, you might want to offer other decoration options like ribbons, strips of fabric, dried flowers, etc.
Conversation Starters - Pre-write conversation starter questions on smooth rocks and add them to a fancy jar or vase. Have the guests take turns pulling them out and reading the question out loud.
Yardzee - Make your own lawn dice by decorating same-sized square boxes. To keep up with your boho theme, you can decorate the dice in vintage wrapping paper and add the dots with solid colored paper. Make each glamper a score sheet from an online printable or keep everyone’s score on poster boards nearby.
Scavenger Hunt - Check online for an outdoor scavenger hunt list or make your own. When the sun goes down, you can also do a glowstick hunt around the yard. Assign each guest or team a color for an added challenge.
For an easy appetizer or movie snack, make campfire nachos. Fill individual foil packets with nacho chips, cheese, tomatoes, corn, beans, meat, and avocados. Seal foil and cook four to five inches from the fire for 10 minutes or until cheese melts.
For your main meal, warm up mugs of tomato soup and make grilled cheese paninis. Offer the guests cheese options and add-ons like bacon, avocado, tomatoes, and spinach.
Chocolate fondue is a great alternative to birthday cake. Use strawberries, bananas, pound cake, angel food cake, or marshmallows for dippers.
For breakfast the next morning, let the kids make their own cinnamon rolls on a stick. Use kabob sticks (presoaked in water) to secure the rolls and let cook slowly in the oven (about 15 minutes) over a low heat. Drizzle with icing and serve with a fruit cup.
Screen a camping movie
Choose a great kid-friendly camp movie to end the night before the kids go to bed. If you are screening the movie outside of the Glampground, try filling an inflatable pool with blankets and pillows for a cozy viewing set-up. Camp movie ideas might include: Parent Trap, Camp Rock, Cheaper by the Dozen 2, or The Great Outdoors.
An easy glamping goodie bag is filled with all the fixings for s’mores: A chocolate bar, Teddy Grahams, and marshmallows. Add a simple note that says, “Life is s’more fun with friends like you!” You can also fill an inexpensive cinch bag with travel-sized items like a toothbrush, hand lotion or sanitizer, and lip balm.
Pam is an avid party planner and mother of three. She loves glamping as she is more of an indoor girl.
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