Easy Camping and Cooking Tips

My husband and I love to get away to our favorite camping spot, about 45 minutes away. We have an older VW Westfalia that is perfect for the two of us. Well, it’s not really perfect, but it works.

The great joy of camping for us is not that we don’t always sleep perfectly in our “camping bed,” or that everything is always nice and clean, … it’s that for 24 hours, time slows down. It’s a luxury for us.

A one-night getaway is just the right amount of time to experience the afternoon, dusk, evening fire, one night away from the comfort of your own bed, early morning breakfast and another fire, and then down-time to relax, read, hike–or just do nothing– before it’s time to leave again.

It’s time to connect with the one you love.

No matter what your style or location, camping makes you appreciate more, relax more, give more, … and love more.

You have time to sort through things on your mind, come up with new ideas and plans … dream more.

I call it our $12 getaway because that is what it costs for us to make camp (not counting gas and food).

The best way to make your bed feel luxurious is to bring soft blankets instead of heavy sleeping bags. During the summer months, light bedding is good!

We always have a little rug outside to keep the inside clean.

Bring chairs with backs for comfort.

You can always make your own tables with boxes (that you’ll eventually burn).

You can always buy wood from the camp hosts, but we bring our own.

For ambience, throw in some candles!

Course citronella always graces our table.

And baby wipes are your best friend.

We always bring the ol’ camping jug full of ice water.

My secret for cooking while camping is to “cook ahead of time.”

Have everything cut and pre-wrapped.

Precook your eggs and bacon at home; wrap in foil. Put on the fire and turn a few times before serving.

These delicious Bloody Mary Tomatoes I brought and served on top of the eggs, with sliced avocados, and fresh fruit.

For us, it’s always espresso in the morning by the fire.

Come with an attitude of relaxation. Being in the outdoors for me is a good time to meditate, pray, read, smell the fire, look up into the trees, sit by the brook, taking a hike, or even just watch the sunlight through the trees.

How often do we just “sit” and look at nature? I could always do a little more of this … so when my husband says, “Let’s head up to Union Creek,” … I’m in!

When’s the last time you got away to camp, even for a 24-hour period?

   

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22 Responses to “Easy Camping and Cooking Tips”

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    Kim | At Home With Kim — June 27, 2012 @ 3:50 am

    Sandy, what a PERFECT way to truly get away! When your kids were younger did they go with you or is this something you started recently? I think it’s a great suggestion to do just one night…. I’m not much of a camper, but that would be the perfect amount of time to get away. LOVE this!

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    kelley {mountain mama cooks} — June 27, 2012 @ 6:42 am

    I love this, Sandy! We love to go camping as well and I think it’s the most relaxing and perfect vacation. We’ll have to swap camping recipes next month! :)

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    Emma — June 27, 2012 @ 7:05 am

    We’ve always camped as a family and just recently my husband and I have started going just the two of us. Different buy still fun. I like the idea of precooking the eggs and bacon. Never would have thought of that and those Bloody Mary tomatoes sound yummy!

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    Whitney — June 27, 2012 @ 7:15 am

    My husband and I camped over Easter and I went on my first backpacking trip this past weekend. While being outdoors is not my first love or completely comfortable to me, there is just something about being outside and seeing and hearing creation at it’s finest. Being still is boring to me, but camping provides the MUCH needed time to stop.

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    cathy @ Noble Pig — June 27, 2012 @ 7:21 am

    I want to come camping with you!! I always pack too much stuff everywhere I go and it seems one of the successes of camping would be light travel!!

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    MLJ — June 27, 2012 @ 7:36 am

    Great camping post! My husband and I also love camping together. I recently wrote a post with some wonderful camping meal recipes and suggestions. http://thejacksonsdaily.blogspot.com/2012/04/camping-meals.html
    enjoy!

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    Karen McMaster — June 27, 2012 @ 7:38 am

    I agree camping is the perfect reasonable getaway to unplug and reconnect with your love..whether it be your man or woman or nature or just peace of mind!! we camp once a month atleast and all year round..yep even in the winter! I love you blog post..so accurate and informative..if I werent already a camper you definately inspired me to try it!!!

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    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles — June 27, 2012 @ 7:40 am

    That looks like one of the most relaxing camping trips ever! Love it!!

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    Captain Micah — June 27, 2012 @ 7:41 am

    What a great post! I love camping, but we certainly don’t do it very often any more. We don’t have any kids yet, either, so we should have no excuses.

    Thanks to the dry, we aren’t allowed to make any fires here in Arizona (too many forest fires as it is). But there are other things to enjoy while camping! I guess the black bears are growing in their confidence with campers, too, so there is always that form of entertainment.

    I think my favorite picture is your husband’s shoes over the river. It’s green and beautiful!

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    Wenderly — June 27, 2012 @ 7:55 am

    Great tips girl! Love this!! Now I feel like a *happy camper* ! :)

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    Bridget — June 27, 2012 @ 6:09 pm

    I always associate camping with mess and inconvenience. You make it look so effortless. What a great idea to cook ahead and reheat in foil.

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    Aggie — June 27, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

    Sigh, so much I love about this post Sandy. Wow, I had no idea you camped. We are not campers…yet. I love the outdoors so much that I would love to do this eventually, though I have no idea where to start! My sister has a camper and invites us all the time.

    The scenery, the food, the downtime, it all sounds so wonderful.

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    Diane | An Extraordinary Day — June 27, 2012 @ 9:31 pm

    Oh Sandy! You make that sound perfect!

    I’ve never been camping, yes I went to camp as a kid, but that’s it. We don’t own all the parphanelia for camping. But, recently I heard about cabins to rent in state/national parks and now I’m seriously thinking of checking it out. Would that be called cabining?

    Wishing you An Extraordinary Day!

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    MrsB — June 28, 2012 @ 5:54 am

    loved the pics & the story that goes with it Sandy <3 also somewhat relieved to discover am not the only mad female schlepping candles on a camping trip????? (mine might be the best travelled candles around??? they went from North Wales in the UK (home) all the way to Brittany in France ^-^). I've recently started sharing our camping trips online and am beginning to realise there's nothing better than a trip in a *den on wheels*.
    loving your blog by the way (and now that I know you hang out in a van I think I might love it just that teeny weeny bit more ha!)
    Greetings from North Wales (UK)
    Babs :)

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    Amy — July 2, 2012 @ 6:56 am

    How fun is that?!? I never knew y’all had an old VW. So cool. You make it sound like something we should think about.

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    Andrea — August 1, 2012 @ 7:04 am

    I loved this post. Something for me to think about more as our kids get older (they are 5 and 9 and need a lot of our attention). Right now, I often feel like most of my convos with my husband include, “please pass the salt” and “can you stop by the grocery store for me”. Our kids are the center of our lives and it’s very difficult to carve out time for the two of us. I loved your ideas, though.

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    Www.Youtube.com — February 18, 2013 @ 5:50 pm

    Thanks for one’s marvelous posting! I seriously enjoyed reading it, you happen to be a great author. I will make certain to bookmark your blog and will eventually come back down the road. I want to encourage you to continue your great work, have a nice weekend!

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    gps tracking devices — July 17, 2013 @ 7:20 pm

    Camping with a group is fun. If you have friends or family who are experienced campers, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to tag along with them on your first campout. Never go camping without more clothes and food than you think you will need. It is always better to have extra clothing and food in case of emergency. Remember there’s nothing wrong with sleeping out under the stars, weather permitting. But sooner or later you’ll likely need a tent.

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    Jill — July 25, 2013 @ 11:00 am

    I don’t camp, but these are CLEVER outdoors tips!!

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