First camping trip of the year!

Ever since coming home from Cambridge Camping and Caravanning club site last August, we have all been eager to camp again. There is nothing like sitting back in the evening, hearing the boys play and just enjoying the surroundings. This year, however, is our busiest year of camping and Mark and I couldn’t be happier! We kicked it off with a 4 night, 5 day trip to Holmsley Camping and Caravanning Club. Mark and I as yet hadn’t experienced a forest/wood style pitch and it was something we were eager to tick off our bucket list. Holmsley offered so much to do and even in poor weather there was going to be something to explore.

Prepping to go

Packing the car has to be one of my least favourite jobs when it comes to camping, it is like playing real life tetris. A game I have never been all that good with. During the winter/spring months, we had been replacing some of our old worn pieces of camping equipment with items that suited us more as a family. One of the 2 main things we needed was a new cooking set. The previous one we had must have been a good 20/25 years old if not more. The pots and pans were not all that big and it became a pain having to clean each pan before reusing. We were gifted a fab Vango Non-Stick family set, which is suitable for 8 people. So for our family, it was ideal.

Another piece of equipment we needed to get was a picnic table or some form of table and chairs for the boys. Eating inside a beach tent although fun, was only ever a temporary solution. Millets gifted us this Eurohike Picnic table with benches and it was great!

Prepping the tent

We also had to make sure we packed the tent cleaning supplies. Storm sent us their cleaning kit which comprises off,

Tent Cleaner – The Tent cleaner comes in a really handy spray bottle to make it easy to apply. It is suitable for tents, awnings, gazebos, marquees, tarps, covers and pretty much all fabric surfaces. It is great for helping to clean the general dirt, tree sap or bird poop! And what’s more, it doesn’t affect the waterproofing on the tents.

Non Scratch Sponge suitable for all camping equipment and materials.

Reproofing your tent – If you find your tent has sprung a leak you can reproof it using Storms Reproofing Your Tent cleaner. It is a fast drying silicone-free proofer which is great on synthetic and natural materials. You just simply paint on and leave to dry.

Also, another product in the storm range is Tear-Aid Patch Pack, great for those emergencies tears and holes. Really quick to pop one on to help secure any damage!

With everything packed, we were ready to leave!

Car boot full of camping gear

Holmsley Camping and Caravan Club Site

If you want to take a read of our review of the campsite then you can do so here. I thought I would write about what we got up too and saw. Holmsley is set within the New Forest, so as you can imagine there are ponies everywhere. Something we weren’t expecting, however, was to see Cows too! Every evening we would go “Pony Spotting” we would leave camp and pretty much walk the length of the campsite. It was a great photo opportunity and also it was a way we could try and tire the boys out a bit. Of course as soon as we went outside the gates they seemed to have been given an injection of high energy and more often than not we ended back at camp with them hyper.Camping in the New Forest


When we arrived we decided we were going to try the site’s take away. After the journey and pitching neither Mark or I felt like trying to come up with a half decent meal. The boys are so fussy (and Mark too) that we tend to just eat out of tins. I would love to be more prepared and take meals to reheat but in reality, I don’t see that happening. We ended up having sandwiches every day for lunch and then in the evenings I would eat soup. Mark and Jack ate Irish Stew and Oliver and Arthur would eat Hot Dogs or Pasta, or both!

Soup in the open, cooking whilst camping


One of the things I love about camping is just relaxing. Nothing like reading a book lying on the rug listening to the sound of the birds. I love watching the boys playing together, no electronics in sight. They become so attached to them that it causes so much friction. They turn into little monsters riddled with the need to watch youtube or play Roblox. At Holmsley phone signal was pretty non existent for me. Which when you are supposed to be working, and that involves social media and the internet it can be a bit of a bummer. I found my phone struggled to keep up with always trying to connect to 4G that my battery would drain quicker. I was equipped with a couple of chargers which helped! I always like to be over prepared, so I hoped that these wouldn’t see me without my phone.

GP Powerbank

This GP Powerbank is a beaut! 20,000 mAh it lasted an age! The Powerbank has an overheat protection so it automatically turns off when it reaches a certain temperature. Which when your sleeping in tent it is reassuring. It also features fast charge AND you can charge 2 units at the same time. So you can expect 8 chargers for a smartphone and just under 2 full charges for a tablet.

The GP TravoSafe is specially designed to be safe for air travel. Not as powerful as the other GP Powerbank it was still able to charge mine sufficiently enough to last a day or two. It is a lot smaller than the Powerbank so is more fitting to take out and about.

The boys!

Jack reading a book using a VARTA head torch

Jack found the VARTA headtorch a life saver when it came to reading his book. We had noticed that in the evenings the boys went to be much later (probably down to all the sunlight!) which meant Jack was also not ready for bed at his usual bedtime. He also became rather bored as he had to be quiet whilst the other 2 were sleeping. We had popped to Sainsburys in ChristChurch and picked Jack up his first David Walliams book “Grandpa’s Great Escape” and using the headtorch made it so much easier for him to read. It also meant we were not lighting up the site with all our torches and lamps being used at once.

Exploring the new forest



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