I am not a high maintenance chick. At least I don’t think I am. I just like the finer things in life. You know, LIKE RUNNING WATER AND ELECTRICITY. I’m truly a nature girl at heart but after immersing myself in the elements, I just want a comfortable bed, a shower, and air conditioning. Is that so much to ask for?
Yes, I’m a glamper. I don’t mind camping but I prefer it with a side of glamour. (FYI Glamor + Camping = Glamping)
My family and I headed up to the New Jersey Shore last weekend to take in the sites of Tuckerton Seaport and enjoy a full day of their Privateers & Pirates Festival. As part of this sponsored trip, we were offered accommodations at the Sea Pirate Campground nearby. It’s what we did last year. We knew what we were getting into and it is by no means “glamorous” but for people like me, I’ve learned how to survive it all. Here’s my advice.
1. Find a campground with lots of activities for your family.
Tucked away in West Creek, NJ is the Sea Pirate Campground, a little campground with lots of options for families. There’s a store so that mom can get her shopping fix (I bought the cutest little ceramic lighthouse birdhouse there) and dad can get creamer for his coffee.
Or just make your own ceramics. There’s a building just for Arts, Crafts, & Ceramics.
Or play on the playground. This might be the last remaining playground with ACTUAL SEESAWS. But don’t tell anyone for fear they would deem them too dangerous and take them away. Also, I’ve learned that I’m really too heavy now to seesaw with anyone.
Quick poll: did you call them seesaws or teeter totters?
Oh hey. There’s fishing. This is a stocked lake so you will catch something and you will release it. It is actually a catch and release lake so it’s just meant to be recreational. Although my idea of recreation doesn’t involve sticking a hook through a fish’s mouth and then taking it out and giving him a toss back in the lake while yelling “Sorry bout that!” But maybe that’s just me.
And when in doubt, there’s always food. You’ll find standard campground fare like cheeseburgers, hot dogs, grilled cheese, and ONLY THE BEST FRENCH FRIES EVER. And ice cream, of course.
You’ll also find volleyball, horseshoes, a swimming pool, and trails to the shore where you can go crabbing.
2. Embrace the concept of tiny house living.
It’s a cute cabin, isn’t it? It’s like a stationary mobile home. And we look so happy! It’s because we were leaving and heading home! To our much bigger house!
Don’t get me wrong. We loved our weekend but it’s tiny inside. But it had all the essentials we needed. Like a functioning kitchen with a gas stove and refrigerator.
And the kitchen is stocked with the bare essentials. Some plastic dishes, silverware, a few pots and pans, and bowls.
And the sleeping accommodations, while meager, including a full sized bed in its own tiny bedroom, two bunk beds, and a futon that folds out to a double bed. YES, you can sleep 6 people in this cabin!
3. Change your sense of humor.
If you didn’t know there’s such a thing as campground humor, you will after a few nights in your own little deluxe cabin.
4. Get outside.
We used the campground as home base and explored the area. We loved the beautiful scenery at nearby Tuckerton Seaport.
5. Make fire.
Every campsite has a fire ring (I think it’s actually and old wheel well) so that you can safely make your own fire every night. Which we did.
There is something so simple and bonding about sitting around a fire, no devices in hand, just sipping wine, and roasting marshmallows. We have a fire pit at home now because we enjoy it so much.
6. Teach your kids new skills.
Last year, Evan walked into the cabin and exclaimed, “I can’t believe people actually live like this.” Yes, son, they do.
This year, when we were invited back, he eagerly replied yes. He couldn’t wait to go and although he brought his iPad, he barely touched it the whole weekend.
We also decided that at 8 years old, Evan might be old enough for his first pocketknife. To say he was thrilled was an understatement. So we all sat around with our knives and whittled little sticks from around the cabin.
7. Dress it up.
Just because you’re camping or glamping doesn’t mean you have to live like it. We brought our comfy camping chairs and some blankets. We used real glasses for our wine. And we even dressed up our picnic table for every meal (it’s a trick I learned from my friend Gina last year).
You’d be amazed at the difference a tablecloth and a citronella candle make at setting the mood!
So we survived. We did it and we enjoyed it and we’re even thinking about, gasp, tent camping! But I’ll make sure the weather is cool and we have electrical hookups at our campsite. We’re not savages after all.
Overnight Accommodations provided by Sea Pirate Campground. The main event & experience for my family provided by Tuckerton Seaport. This experience is compensated but all opinions are my own. For more information about Real Mom Events – visits Real Mom Media for details.