Camp Cook Chronicles – Traveling & Bunking with other Families
We’re crazy lucky to be friends with some amazing families who enjoy traveling & outdoor adventures as much as we do. In fact, as I’m writing this, one of those families is sound asleep in a yurt near my camp office. We went on a whirlwind road trip around Florida with the adventuring family of Val in Real Life and learned a lot bunking with 365 Atlanta Family on a couple of occasions. These experiences have been a blast for the adults and the kids alike!
Children learn and teach each other naturally in a pressure-free, non-judgmental environment
Traveling and bunking, whether in a hotel or at camp, with another family provides a pressure-free environment where children of different ages can come together peaceably to learn and teach each other. This place of social education is much different from their routine in school. My older sons, 11 & 12, are able to befriend children who are half their age – imparting knowledge and willing to learn what the little guys have to teach them about life. They aren’t concerned with sticking to a tutoring topic or being seen mentoring a 5-year-old or playing silly games with a 2-year-old. There is no pressure, from peers, to leave the little ones behind.
When traveling with another family, it’s been my pleasure to witness the exchange of knowledge and experience that takes place between children from different lives, different families, backgrounds and experience. I’ve listened in on lessons my children give about various subjects and I’ve watched them soak up information from others. Let’s face it, moms: Sometimes, we don’t know what they’ve learned until we see them teaching it to someone else.
Helping Hands with Extra Sets of Eyes and Ears
Another great benefit of staying with another family, on overnight adventures, is having an extra set of helping hands. Today, a young child slipped into the water and was calmly snatched up by another watchful parent. In less tense moments, we can help carry things, point out interesting items along the way, and help engage impatient children while other parents have their hands full.
The kids play their part as helping hands as well. My own sons got the fire going, last night, while entertaining the little ones with a lesson on how it’s done. It gave us moms a moment to sit back, relax and enjoy the scene.
We help each other prepare meals, watch the kids, wash dishes and do other camp chores. We support each other where our strengths falter and provide an extra sense of security.
Renewed Sense of Adventure
One of the greatest things about traveling and overnighting with another family is experiencing their adventurous spirit. We all have our own senses of adventure and ways of satisfying that need for excitement & curiosity.
It’s nice to go along with another family and experience their ideas about what constitutes an adventure. What sparks their curiosity is often different from our own and experiencing a trail or park with another family opens up new avenues of interest, knowledge and adventure.
The Money Saved
Last, but not least, is the obvious benefit of saving money on your trip. Splitting costs with another family is an excellent way to save money. You’ll save a lot on lodging and can share supplies. A little research into group discounts could even knock a few bucks off attraction passes.