Packing for Camp


Ugh! There are lots of household tasks that do not make my list of “Top 10 Things To Do.” Right up top is cleaning the house. Followed closely by planning dinner EVERY day for my family. (I don’t mind the cooking part, it’s the “What’s for dinner?” question running through my head that puts me on edge.)

Right behind those two is PACKING – for a vacation, a business trip, or worse, CAMP. How am I – a total organizational control-freak – supposed to pack everything my kid could possibly need over the next month? Shorts, t-shirts, underwear, swimsuits – no problem. Sunscreen? How many bottles? Bug spray? Is it buggy in Maine? How would I know? A nice outfit? And the ever-plaguing question – which shoes should we pack? How many pairs? How much money is going to be spent when they all come back trashed and I have to go buy all new shoes and clothes in August? And HOW am I going to get it all washed, dried, folded, labeled, and packed into two duffle bags, BY SATURDAY MORNING???

Okay – deep breath. For starters, I find that it is more fun to think about what I am going to send my kid while she’s AT camp – cute note cards, care packages, small snack items, things to make her smile (but not homesick). Of course, the first place I “shop” is on our own Challah Connection website. I’ve already put aside the Camp Bunk Box of Questions.
Surely a bag of black and white cookies and rugelach will be making its way to Maine this summer. And as for other fun things, I always “shop” our DIY (Do-It-Yourself Basket) department.

How about some fun ways to communicate with my kid? I remember a few special ways my mom used to write to me at camp. There was the balloon letter – she would blow it up at home, write her letter on it in permanent marker, deflate it, and stick it in an envelope. I had to blow it up to read it. There was also the circular letter – she would start writing at the outside of the page and then keep turning the paper so the words made a huge maze-like circle (kind of like those huge twisted lollipops on a stick). Those are the two I remember most clearly (and it feels like it was a VERY LONG TIME AGO).

Do you have any good tips for how to communicate with kids at camp, or great camp care package ideas? I’d love to hear them!

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