5 Ways to Make Your Staycation Ready for Summer!
Summer is just around the corner. And that means there’s time for fun outdoor activities and games. Why not enjoy the warm weather with some exciting safe (and socially distant) outdoor activities for you and your family.
1) Set Up Your Campsite
What’s camping without a comfy cot and a cozy tent? Whether you’re in the comforts of your backyard or roughing it at a local campground, you’ll want to have your campsite ready. Just be sure to follow public health guidelines in your area and check any weather conditions before you go. Make sure to check the ground for any sticks or rocks. Setting up your tent is a great family friendly activity to practice when you are ready for the actual wilderness. Be sure to supervise children when rolling out the tent, putting in stakes, connecting poles, and setting up the rain fly.
Want your pop-up tent to be more comfortable? Add in a yoga mat or an extra layer of sleeping bags/comforters for that extra cushion. When in doubt, you can always go to the tried-and-true inflatable air mattress.
Make sure to do a quick scan of the yard for any broken sticks or rocks. Set up a trash can for any garbage to avoid any messy clean-ups later on.
If you’d like extra lighting in and around your tent, get an extension cord and some string lights to hang up.
2) Get Moving
Just because you’re backyard camping doesn’t mean you have to be inactive. Summer means there’s lots of opportunities to get out and enjoy the outdoors. If you’re missing the gym why not get your heart pumping with some body weight workouts? Just take the gym outside with you from the comfort of your backyard or local park/trail. Here’s some easy workouts you can do outside or at home to bring out your inner athlete. Just be sure to always keep yourself hydrated and give yourself enough time to recover. For the more adventurous, you can always check out your local neighborhood hiking trails. If you’re planning on hiking in your local trails, be sure to leave a note and keep yourself prepared by taking essential items and gear with you
Why not make it competitive with some fun backyard games like cornhole, Badminton, and Giant Jenga?
Got a ladder hanging around? Turn it into a modified corn hole game by laying it down horizontally or setting it up normally.
Got a sidewalk and some chalk? Try tapping into your creative side with some sidewalk art to brighten up your neighborhood.
3) Breakout the BBQ
Getting back to normal means spending those long summer days with your family and friends. What's a Backyard staycation or a relaxing trip to the backcountry or lake without a picnic or BBQ? Gather up some healthy snacks, sandwiches and drinks while enjoying the outdoors. Fire up the grill for some tasty hamburgers or hotdogs.
Balance out the carbs and protein with some healthy snacks like the classic “Ants On A Log” recipe:
-Peanut butter (substitute with jam or other spreads if needed)
1) Cut celery sticks into smaller chunks/quarters
2) Spread a generous portion of peanut butter or jam/other in the middle of the celery
3) Place raisins evenly on top of the spread
4) Meal Mixes/Mountain House Mixes
Looking for a tasty dessert to top off your night? Did you know you can use Mountain House to make delicious snacks? What’s better than a delicious sundae to share with your family around the campfire?
Keep an eye out for a future blog post on more ingenious ideas on Mountain House mixes!
MOUNTAIN HOUSE ICE CREAM SUNDAE
- 1 Mountain House Granola with Milk and Blueberries
- 2 Scoops of Vanilla Ice Cream
- 1 Banana cut in half or into circles
- Chocolate or Maple Syrup
1) Use two scoops of ice cream placed in a line horizontally in a bowl
2) Peel and cut 1 banana into quarters or cut horizontally for 1 large half slices. Place bananas beside the ice cream
3) Add 1 packet of Mountain House Granola with Milk and Blueberries
4) Add Chocolate or Maple Syrup for garnish
MOUNTAIN HOUSE HACK FOR SAUTEED CHANTERELLES
Hungry for something more filling? Why not try the Mountain House Hack for Sauteed Chanterelles
- Mountain House Pasta Primavera
- ½ cup chanterelles, cut into 1” pieces
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon oil
- Salt and Pepper to taste
1) Heat oil over medium heat
2) Add in onions and garlic
3) Stir in Chanterelles. Stir frequently as chanterelles release their water. Cook until water has been absorbed
4) Add salt and pepper to taste
5) Night time Activities
Just because it’s getting dark out doesn’t mean you can stop having fun. Why not take out a flashlight to read under the stars. Learn something new or get lost in your favourite novel.
Check out your local library before hand to check out new and interesting books.
Watching a Movie
Got a portable projector and a Bluetooth speaker? Stretch out a bedsheet in your yard relax with some family-friendly classics like Up, Toy Story, or The Neverending Story
Have a fun stargazing session as you enjoy the night sky. Try to spot Jupiter or Mars or get ready to enjoy the Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower on July 28/29 and the Perseids Meteor Shower on August 12/13.
Check out your current night sky viewing conditions here:
Bring out your inner Carl Sagan or Neil deGrasse Tyson with these stargazing apps:
- Sky Map (Formerly Google Sky) https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.stardroid&hl=en_CA&gl=US
- Star Walk https://apps.apple.com/us/app/star-walk-find-stars-planets/id295430577
- Sky Safari https://skysafariastronomy.com/
Pass some flashlights around to play some flashlight tag or set up a scavenger hunt.
Here’s a sample scavenger hunt you can print out and use for your next outdoor camping
Can you find:
- A rock
- A weed
- Something soft
- Something hard
- A bug
- A seed or berry
- Something small
- Something Large
- Something that’s shiny
- Something Round
- Something Fluffy
- Something you can draw on
- Something you can write with
Whatever you do with you and your family, it’s important to always have proper supervision. Have a First Aid kit ready on hand for any potential cuts or scrapes. Check your safety supplies for any missing equipment, supplies, or expired medicine that may need replacing. Remember, safety comes first.
Let us know how your backyard camping adventure went in the comments below. Share your camping ideas and favourite camping food recipe below.