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Adventures with Callie: Backyard Camping

 

Hi, Dreamers! It’s Friday again—so it’s time for another weekend adventure with me, Callie.

 

This weekend you and your family are going on a camping trip close to home. Right in your backyard, to be exact. Backyard camping has all the fun of regular camping, but you have access to any extra amenities usually left at the house.

 

Let’s start the camping adventure!

 

5. Adventures with Callie_Pic1

 

The Essentials

— Tent (Feeling ambitious? Build your own!)

— Sleeping bags or bedrolls

— Flashlights

 

The Extras

— Binoculars

— Canteens

— Compass

Tip: Add yoga mats beneath sleeping bags for additional comfort

 

5. Adventures with Callie_Pic2

 

Build a Fire

For those with a fire pit or grill, you’re all set. If not, we’ve got you covered. Get a Terra Cotta pot and line it with foil. Add charcoal (and lighter fluid, if need be), light it, and you’re good to go!

 

5. Adventures with Callie_Pic3

 

‘Healthy’ S’mores

Now that your fire’s going, it’s time for a snack, and there’s nothing like a classic s’more. For an updated (healthier!) version, try a grilled banana s’more. Basically, it’s a banana stuffed with marshmallows and chocolate, so it’s sure to be a family favorite. Just wrap the stuffed banana in foil and heat it up over the grill or fire for about 10 minutes. The results will be a gooey snack of deliciousness. Yum!

 

5. Adventures with Callie_Pic4

 

Modern Lanterns

Need a nightlight? Fill mason jars with glow sticks and add water to make a cool lantern. You can even add glitter and dish soap to the mixture and they’ll catch the light when shaken and remain suspended.

 

5. Adventures with Callie_Pic5

 

Game Prep

For a quick game, grab a ladder and label each rung with different points. Have each player throw bean bags between the rungs and see who gets the most points.

 

Fireside Stories

Once the family’s settled around the tent or fire, it’s time for a ghost story! Have someone begin the story by saying only one sentence. Go around the circle and have each person add a sentence to progress the story. Everyone will be surprised at how the tale turns out!

 

5. Adventures with Callie_Pic6

 

Reach for the Stars

Although this adventure is a way to get in touch with nature, elevate the experience with a dose of modern-day technology. Bring along a smartphone and download any of the free astronomy apps available, like Star Chart and Sky Map. Just point your smartphone to the sky and it’ll inform you about the constellations you see. It’s a virtual planetarium in your pocket!

 

Take a Hike Around the Neighborhood

Before settling around a campfire, go for a “hike” around the neighborhood. Explore any roads you might not usually walk down or a park you’ve never visited. If you have a compass or a map (or GPS on a phone), plot a course and see if your family can navigate it. Watch birds through binoculars and collect nature samples—leaves, rocks, flowers—along the way. Take photos and be sure to return to your campsite before sundown!

 

Now, go out and have a PAWESOME weekend adventure! Tell us all about your backyard camping trips in the comments below and I’ll see you again next Friday for more Adventures with Callie.

 

h/t: Parents.com, Buzzfeed, and Neighborhood Food

Adult supervision required.

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