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Backyard Camping At Home On The Cheap

My son loves the idea of camping!

That said, we have a packed daily schedule that really won’t enable us to go to a real camp site for quite a while, so instead we decided to have a camping experience at home.

While camping in itself isn’t really expensive, camping at home is even cheaper and almost as fun!

We started the evening by firing up a fire using firewood bought from a store in our backyard portable fire pit.  Next we got out our old camp pie makers and created some pizza pies (a favorite at our house), but you could also create other pies such as apple, cherry, etc.  That’s when we encountered a small problem with our fire!

Fire Problem:

I really needed to start the campfire an hour before we started cooking.  To have a great campfire, it’s good to have red glowing embers.  I started the wood burning, and then had the kids try to cook their pizza pies over the new still burning wood.

We were still able to cook the pies, but it took a long time and would have been much better if they embers were glowing.  marshmallows would have been okay at this point, but not pizza pies.  All told, we cooked pizza pies, hotdogs and marshmallows at our at home camp out.  We even sung a few campfire songs (softly since our neighbors live close by).

My son had a friend over, and they put together the tent while the campfires was burning itself out.  It was fun watching them try to put the tent together.  It took them a good bit of time longer than it for me, but it was fun watching them figure out the “putting the tent up” puzzle.

They decided to put the tent up on our deck, so the next step was to get additional blankets to form a cushioned pad so the deck planks weren’t so hard.  Next came the board games, which included “Trouble”, “Battleship and a checkered board that I assume was to be used to play chess or checkers. My wife, daughter and I went inside.  At this point our camping experience was done (my wife hates to camp) since my wife and I had to go to work tomorrow.  We left a screened window open so we could hear if there were any problems though!

All told, the entire experience cost us less than $10 since we had all of the equipment beforehand.  I’m sure my son will be happy now that he has camped out with a friend, and we are still able to maintain our hectic, sports packed schedule.

Happy backyard camping!


6 Responses to Backyard Camping At Home On The Cheap

  1. Sounds like an awesome idea! Someday I need to try this – well my kid is too young to ask for this now, but I’m sure this is going to happen!!

    • It was nice and cheap. I kind of got a kick out of looking out the my upstairs window and seeing the tent glow from the flashlights. Reminds me of my youth.

  2. Sounds like a perfect evening. Mosquitos have been terrible up here, so I am in the house every night by dusk!

    Just as an fyi, dryer lint is a great fire starter!

    • What a great idea! I’ll have to try dryer lint as a fire starter! Thx

      The mosquitos were bad, I actually had to break out a can of “Off” and spray everybody down. I’m not fond of chemicals, so I hated to do it, but…

  3. That is so cool! I loved going camping as a kid and camping in your backyard is a great idea. That’s awesome you have a fire pit. Roasting marshmallows and making smores is the best.

  4. I tried this a couple of times, but so far my 5 year old thinks it’s fun til about bedtime, when he wimps out and decides he prefers the comfort of his own bed.

    I think if we camp, we can’t have the bed backup option.