Ways to Go Camping with Baby

Camping with Baby 1

6 Safe and Super Fun Ways to Go Camping with Baby

By Rita Myers

I’ve enjoyed camping since I was little, and it’s probably one of the few activities that have remained constant in my life, from childhood through adulthood. And now that I have a family of my own, I especially enjoy being able to go camping with all the members of our little household.

Yes, that means I regularly go camping with baby in tow. I’ve realized that a lot of people don’t think it’s possible to do so – it’s not safe enough, there’s too much to worry about, etc.

But it can be an incredibly fun and memorable experience that’s completely safe for your infant or toddler if you know what you’re doing. Here are a few tips and tricks on how to go camping with baby.

 

A QUICK LOOK: WHAT YOU SHOULD DO WHEN CAMPING WITH BABY (#5 will be your favorite!)

  1. Bring These 3 Must-Have Baby Items
  2. Be Mindful of Temperature Changes
  3. Keep your Baby on the Same Eating and Sleep Schedule
  4. Choose a Nearby Campsite and Do a Test Run
  5. Don’t Worry Too Much and Relish in Your Baby’s First Camping Experience!
  6. Get Your Whole Family Involved

 

#1 Bring These 3 Must-Have Baby Items

As indicated in the video above, on top of the basic necessities for your baby, this is the trio that will make camping with your baby convenient and worry-free: a baby carrier, a natural insect repellent, and a safe area for your baby at the campsite.

A baby carrier will allow you to hike and move around while keeping your hands free. A natural insect repellent keeps your baby safe from insect bites – it can be used by the whole family too!

And finally, you need to create a spot at the campsite for your baby where he/she can explore and move around safely and under your watchful eye, be it a mat or a small tent.

Important Reminder: Choose an insect repellent with natural ingredients instead of chemicals. Before using it on your baby, you should read the label carefully and follow instructions closely. Only apply the insect repellent on your baby’s exposed skin and the outside of his/her clothes.

 

#2 Be Mindful of Temperature Changes

Camping with Baby 2

 

Temperatures can greatly fluctuate when you go camping, and it’s easy for grown-ups and kids to adjust to these changes, but you have to be on the lookout when you go camping with baby.

You could have him/her all bundled up because it had gotten cold overnight and into the early morning – thick blankets and a few layers including a hat – but within minutes, it could go from very cold to very hot, making the layers you put on your baby incredibly uncomfortable.

Be particularly mindful of the temperature inside your tent and dress your baby accordingly.

 

#3 Keep your Baby on the Same Eating and Sleep Schedule

 

Babies need to regularly eat and take naps – try your best to stay within his/her regular routine even while you’re out camping.

It would be great if your baby is able to fall asleep on a carrier, so you can continue on with your hike while he/she does so. Otherwise, you’ll need to adjust your itinerary to make sure you give your baby enough time to nap.

You should also stick to your baby’s eating schedule as much as you can. If you’re breastfeeding, be sure you’re able to find a spot for you to do so even while you’re en route to your campsite.

 

#4 Choose a Nearby Campsite and Do a Test Run

Planning for your first camping trip with your infant can be a daunting task, so try to keep things as simple as possible. Start small and eventually work your way towards bigger and better camping trips.

For starters, choose a campsite that’s near your home, so that in case things don’t work out or something goes uncontrollably wrong, you can quickly pack up and go home.

You can also opt for a familiar campsite, one that you’ve already visited previously. This way, you already know what kind of surroundings you’ll have on the trip. That’s one less thing that’s unknown and unexpected for your trip.

And before you go on your camping trip, take time out to do a test run. Go on a simple road trip with your infant and see how you and your partner will handle travelling with your baby.

That way, you’ll have an idea of what to expect when it comes to the real deal. You’ll also get a good idea of the items you’ll need and what items you can live without in order to minimize your packing.

A test run can also be a bit of motivation – when you witness your baby enjoying him/herself and discovering the great outdoors, it might turn out to be the final push you need to go on a camping trip. Which is related to my next and final tip on how to go camping with baby!

 

#5 Don’t Worry Too Much and Relish in Your Baby’s First Camping Experience!

I believe that a lot of the anxiety that comes with camping with your baby is during the planning stage when you don’t know what to expect and you want to be prepared for anything. But by the time you actually start the camping trip, you should worry less and enjoy more.

Don’t sweat the small stuff and allow yourself to witness your child discovering the great outdoors. Take your camera out and capture those memories that you’ll want to remember forever. Let your child go a little bit, and don’t be afraid to let him/her explore the immediate surroundings (but under your watchful eye).

Getting your child started on camping early can be the beginning of a lifelong passion for the outdoors and a great bonding experience for you and your family. So don’t worry too much and have a great time with your partner and child!

 

#6 Get Your Whole Family Involved

Camping with a baby requires a team effort, so ask the rest of your family to pitch in. You and your partner should take turns spending time with and taking care of your baby, while the other kids in the family can have smaller responsibilities like bringing some of the baby’s items and the baby’s toys.

If your kids are old enough, you can even ask them to take care of their youngest sibling while you do some chores. Don’t leave your kids unattended, but that doesn’t stop you from giving your older kids a sense of responsibility by asking them to take care of their sibling (still under your watchful eye – always!).

A quick tip: don’t make pitching in to take care of the baby feel like a chore for your older kids – instead, make it fun by presenting it as a mission or a game. This can also be a good lesson on responsibility for them!

 

Camping with Baby Conclusion

Not only is camping a great way to take a break from the stress and pressure of daily city life, it’s also an awesome opportunity to spend quality time with your loved ones. It’s a chance to reconnect, reflect and recharge!

So don’t be afraid to go camping with baby! It’s one of the many firsts you’ll want to witness and enjoy for yourself.

The planning and the preparation might take longer than for your usual camping trip, but the extra effort will be worth the joy and satisfaction you’ll feel as a parent. Happy camping!

 

Was this list helpful? I hope so, because I want to break the notion that you can only go camping with baby when he or she reaches a certain age. Camping is an activity that can and should be enjoyed by everyone! You can even find free checklists to help when camping with your kids (of all ages and stages) by going here.

I would love to hear your thoughts and reactions, so please post them in the comments section! And do share this article if you enjoyed reading it. Wishing you well on your camping adventures!

 

Multiple Contributor at | Website

Rita Myers is an avid camper, hiker, wife and mother living in Juneau, Alaska, USA.

She blogs on her own site www.datingwithnature.com and enjoys sharing her experiences with others and encouraging as many women as possible to enjoy the beauty of nature and the pleasures of camping and hiking.

51 thoughts on “Ways to Go Camping with Baby

  • September 23, 2018 at 2:36 am
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    Sounds doable and not difficult. I like the way you have given campers confidence to venture and explore the outdoors with kids. Awesome

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  • May 18, 2017 at 3:13 pm
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    Such a nice post! I always think that camping with baby is impossible haha, but you convinced me! Thank you for great tips 🙂

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  • May 18, 2017 at 10:56 am
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    This is so interesting that you take your baby camping with you. Excuse my ignorance but I am one of those who think that camping with baby isn’t a good idea, or is just not safe! But you’ve proven me wrong. I’m sure your baby will grow up to be one adventurous kid!

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    • May 19, 2017 at 4:55 pm
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      I hope so! You just need to trust your instincts! Only you know what’s best for your baby, and that’s how you can keep them safe! (Plus these tips of course, hehe)

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  • May 17, 2017 at 10:54 pm
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    Great post! I love camping but haven’t been brave enough yet with the 3 yo boy, 2 yo boy and 8 month old baby girl. I am feeling tempted though after reading your post, so maybe I will start with a try somewhere very near by…maybe even the back garden! The boys would love it and we have the giant tent, I have no excuse! (except fear that the boys will get up and escape in the night calling it an “adventure”)

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    • May 19, 2017 at 4:56 pm
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      Oh, the boys will for sure try to have their own little adventure! Mine do all the time! 🙂 But yes, starting with the backyard would be great practice! Good luck 🙂

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  • May 17, 2017 at 2:30 pm
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    Camping is a great family activity! It’s important nowadays to let kids enjoy outdoor activities and nature. We haven’t tried camping with kids yet but these tips will be a lot of help. Thank you!

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    • May 19, 2017 at 4:57 pm
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      You’re welcome, and I agree. It’s important to let kids enjoy the outdoors more!

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  • May 17, 2017 at 10:41 am
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    I LOVE camping and grew up camping in the New Hampshire mountains for a couple weeks each summer. I have not been as an adult though, and I haven’t gone with my family. We realllly want to start, but the problem now is that we live in Florida and it’s HOT. And bug heaven. But we’re working on it, maybe when it cools down.

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    • May 19, 2017 at 4:58 pm
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      Very true! Or you can take a weekend trip somewhere a bit cooler to get outdoors! Or maybe camp on the beach, that might be fun too! 🙂

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  • May 17, 2017 at 6:22 am
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    Camping with baby is one of those activities that I don’t get to do often. But am looking forward to the next opportunity. KOA has great options here in Florida. Thanks for the tips!

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    • May 17, 2017 at 6:47 am
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      You’re welcome. I’m pretty sure KOA would have options for you the next time!

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  • May 17, 2017 at 3:37 am
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    I love the idea of testing it out at a nearby campsite. I’m going to try that with my twins!

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  • May 16, 2017 at 8:02 pm
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    Great advice!!!! It really is important to keep your baby on the same schedule. Babies thrive on routine so it’s important to keep it if you want to have a pleasant time

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  • May 16, 2017 at 7:30 pm
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    That is so lovely. Unfortunately, I have never spent that much time in the nature when I was a baby/toddler (and have tons of allergies now), but I wish I had done so. If I have kids I would love to go camping with them. You seem to have found a great balance – not stressing too much about the kids though caring a lot. Seriously, this is a great role model for each family.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 6:56 am
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      Thank you for the kind words. You can still find a way to go camping now, even with your allergies! I’m sure you’ll be able to find some articles here on Camping For Women or maybe even on my blog that could help you get started with spending time in nature. I guarantee you, spending time outdoors will do wonders for your soul 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 7:25 pm
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    I hadn’t considered these things! The changing temperature is definitely something to prepare for. I’d also want to make sure the experience isn’t too jarring for the baby by keeping the sleep schedule the same.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 6:56 am
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      Yes, that’s very important, especially sleep schedule. Or else when you get home…. you may have some difficulties 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 6:50 pm
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    This is everything we were looking for. TBH, we really want to take our three-year-old out more. She’s adventurous and ready to explore. BUTTTTTT we have 6m old twins and so now we’re stuck– do we go or do we stay? WE GO!! We’re going to start camping in our back yard once or twice and see how everyone does after a BBQ. Then we’re going to do it for real. Thanks all the tips– didn’t even think too much about temperature changes at night but that’s def something to keep in mind!

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    • May 17, 2017 at 6:59 am
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      For sure, you go! 🙂 I think it’s a great idea to try it out in your backyard as a practice run. I’m sure your three-year-old will still enjoy that! Basically, to them, any time outside the house is an adventure! Then once you feel more comfortable, you can do it for real.

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  • May 16, 2017 at 6:31 pm
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    Though we haven’t tried camping with our kiddo we have traveled through countries and following most of these tips have ensured smooth and funfilled trips. We would definitely consider trying camping out with him in near future keeping these tips in mind.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:00 am
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      That’s awesome. Wishing you the best of luck when you do decide to camp with your kid!

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  • May 16, 2017 at 4:29 pm
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    I think it’s great that people get their kids outdoors early. Even for the parents, it’s important not to sacrifice your own interests after having kids. We will definitely use these tips when we have a little one of our own.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:08 am
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      Very true. As a parent, you still have to find the balance between the things you love and your family. Yes, when you have little ones, take them out with you. You all will enjoy it for sure 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 3:23 pm
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    I must admit, I’m not a big fan of camping (let’s just say I have bug issues lol) so I cannot imagine bringing a baby with you! These are awesome tips.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:07 am
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      Thank you for the kind words. True though, bugs can be really annoying! I guess you get used to it over time. 🙂 Lucky for me, my sons love the bugs, haha.

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  • May 16, 2017 at 2:32 pm
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    We took our babies camping when they were little. What fun! I love toddler camping stuff. They are so happy with just anything! I gave them a spoon and they happily played in the dirt. Once my preschooler chose several sizes of pine cones and announced they were a family. So cute. Great tips for happy campers of all ages!

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:05 am
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      A pine cone family, how adorable. I agree. Some of my favorite memories of camping were from when my boys were young. The same thing happened to me when I gave them a spoon and fork. They ended up making a bunch of small dirt piles and claimed they were for the animals to sleep in. 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 2:25 pm
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    This is so helpful. We don’t have any kids of our own yet, but I never grew up camping and then ended up falling in love with it as an adult. And so I want to camp with my kids to expose them to the FUN at a young age!

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:03 am
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      It’s great your into it now and yes, expose them while they’re young! They’ll love it 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 2:11 pm
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    I swear I packed every piece of clothing we had for our daughter when we went camping when she was a baby. And even now as a toddler, I still pack all kinds of clothes because she is bound to get dirty. Camping is a great thing to do as a family, no matter the age of the kids. And it only gets better as they get older!

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:02 am
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      I was the exact same way with my boys! Even more now that they’re older because they don’t hesitate to run around and get dirty. It’s great fun for them though and I totally agree with you that camping is absolutely wonderful with your family.

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  • May 16, 2017 at 2:03 pm
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    I’ve not been an outdoorsy person recently but this seems so helpful. We have a 3 month old so a bit young still.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 7:01 am
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      Yes, 3 months is a tad bit young, but if you’re up for it, give it a few more months 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 1:45 pm
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    I wish I’d taken my son when he was younger. He’s two now and it would be much harder. Great tips!

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    • May 17, 2017 at 6:53 am
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      Hi, Morgan! You can still take your son with you! Yes, it will be a bit more difficult since they tend to move around more, but it will still be a great experience 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 1:15 pm
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    Somehow there is this stigma, at least here in India, to avoid travelling with an Infant for N number of reasons. I am going to recommend this article to everyone, so that people start get out of their shell and start travelling more, specially with children and infants.

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    • May 17, 2017 at 6:52 am
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      Really? I had no idea it was like that in India. But I think it’s great that you feel that it’s good to travel with your kids. Thank you for recommending and sharing, I really appreciate it 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 11:31 am
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    We have been camping for years but this is the first time we will be taking a baby with us. He will be five months our first trip so I am a little anxious but I really like these tips you give!

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    • May 16, 2017 at 1:16 pm
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      How exciting! Don’t worry so much and enjoy your special time with your baby, it will be great! Hoping you have a good time, Kristen! 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 10:11 am
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    I want to take my kids camping but we are waiting till their a little older. My youngest is 2, so I’m afraid it will be too much corralling for him.

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    • May 16, 2017 at 1:21 pm
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      They can get really active when they’re 2, huh! 🙂 No matter what, always trust your instincts. Besides, only you know what’s best for them!

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  • May 16, 2017 at 6:50 am
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    Thanks for these tips. My son is 1 and we have been putting off taking him camping because we were not sure how to go about it really. I love your ideas and tips and will be more likely to take him camping sometime soon now

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    • May 16, 2017 at 1:22 pm
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      That’s great, I’m glad to have helped you somehow! 🙂 Don’t rush it, and go when you feel like it will be the best for your family! 🙂

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  • May 16, 2017 at 6:25 am
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    Choosing between going to the beach or going camping with my baby this summer. Thanks to this post, I think I’ll go for camping now. 🙂

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    • May 16, 2017 at 7:02 am
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      Camping with your baby will be great! I’m glad to have helped and hope you enjoy!

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  • May 15, 2017 at 9:32 pm
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    Great advice to keep them on their schedules! It is better for everyone to keep the routine – especially for the days after you get home.

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    • May 16, 2017 at 7:04 am
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      I totally agree. There’s nothing more difficult than everyone coming home completely disoriented!

      Reply

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