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I have been an avid camper for many years. My family camped a lot as I was growing up (I come to find out later in life it was mainly because we couldn't afford those luxory hotels). I have spend many hours in our tent. During highschool, my father worked at an RV dealership, so we could borrow any used motorhome on the lot. To say the least, I have been in really expensive ones and many not so expensive ones, but I still enjoy the tent. During college, my camping time dwindled to almost nothing. I then got married and have been trying to convince my wife that we should go camping. 7 years and 2 kids later, my wife has finally given in (mainly to the reason that my family camped a lot when I was growing up, who can afford $120 for a hotel per night?!?!?!) I am super excited about going again and even when through all my gear this past weekend. I have no concerns about that part of the camping trip, it is more of how to deal with the kids. My daughter is 5 and my son is almost 2. Does anyone have any suggestions that will make camping with them a little more enjoyable for everyone? We are staying at Warren Dunes State Park in southwest Michigan in July. We plan to spend some time in St. Joe for the festival that weekend, so that will keep the kids some what occupied a part of the time. My son loves the outdoors, so that part of the experience isn't a problem. It is the running off, touching the fire, etc part of the experience that I am worried about. We have a fire pit in the back yard, so it won't totally be new rules for the kids.

Any advice from fellow family campers that help make sure that this is a good expience for not only my kids, but my wife as well (if she likes it, I will probably be able to convience her to go more than once ever 7 years!!!)?
 

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My son is the same way. I can't keep him inside. He loves to be outside. Just let them explore everything. If I know if it's not going to hurt them, let them experience it. Even if it's going to hurt a little......At least you would hope they wouldn't do it again. My son finds other ways to do things so he doesn't get hurt. Takes him a few tries but he never gives up on anything. Little scary. My daughter is the complete opposite. If it looks like it might hurt, she'll ask for help or not bother. My son likes to move, more like run ever sense he was 10 months old. It's hard to keep up with him. I'm not to worried about the fire pit at night while the fire is going. last year the heat was enough to keep him away from it. He knew. It's the next morning that worried about so I bought one of these Superyard XT - North States Industries - Babies "R" Us for him to play in but he didn't want any part of it so I use it to go around the fire pit in the morning so he and the dog don't fall in. Last year was easy because he was just crawling around now this year will be different. We'll have to see. My daughter is 7 and my son is almost 2. She's been a big help keeping an eye on him. She's the informant. She tells me everything he does when I'm not looking.
 

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If the kids are happy and the wife doesn't have to do all the cooking and chores, she'll be happy.

I know the picture is small, but that's my 3 kids in the avatar. It was 28 degrees that morning, and they took off while I was cooking breakfast. I had to zoom the camera in from about 300 yards away to get that picture. They love the outdoors, and they're always asking when we're going camping next.

:welcome: to the site.
 
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