Festivals with children – Am I mad?

an essex wifeOne of the things that has shocked me most since becoming a parent is how so many people have an opinion on what you do with your children,. What shocks me even more is how brazenly they are happy to share them with me.  I was expecting it from my mother, my in-laws and maybe a well-meaning family friend, but complete strangers? That, I was not expecting.

From the lady in the doctors waiting room commenting that my daughters were wearing too much pink, to the waiter in that charming beach front restaurant suggesting that ordering smoked salmon for my daughter was a waste of money when they did battered fish, everyone appears to have a view on how I should be bringing up MY children.

It’s all very strange.

The latest area in which I have opened the door up to the critics is my decision to take a 4 year old and a 18 month old to a festival for 5 days.

‘You’ll be home within the day’ I was helpfully told by one friend.

Yeah, thanks for your support there mate.

‘But what’s the point if you cant get drunk?’ asked another.

Well, mainly so that I can experience something new with my little family and make memories that will last a lifetime I guess.

We love camping, they love camping. We love being outdoors, they love being outdoors. Yes they may wake up early, but then they can nap.  It may indeed rain, but luckily us homosapiens are waterproof.  If I spent my life worrying about the what-ifs and the things that may go wrong, I would never leave my bedroom, let alone my house.

Life is about making memories, doing things that you’ll remember when you’re old and grey.  I want my children to have a fun-filled childhood. One they can look back on and see all the amazing places they went and things we did together. I don’t want them to look back and see hours in front of cartoons and endless days at soft play, I want them to be outdoors experiencing the world.

So that’s why this year we will be head to Camp Bestival for 5 days. Our car fully loaded with ‘stuff’ and our hearts filled with a cocktail of anticipation and excitement of what wonders may lie ahead.  This is virgin territory for all of us.  I love that its something we are discovering as our gang of four, something we can grow and learn with together.  This is the start of a whole new world of adventures for us, adventures that I hope we will be lucky enough to keep having for many, many years to come.

I have been scouring every inch of the Internet for ‘hints and tips’ relating to children at festivals.  Aside from the cries of ‘don’t do it’ I have found some wonderfully helpful pieces from Hello Its Gemma and Mummy Whisperer  with which I have started my planning.

I’ll be sharing more of my planning and excitement over on An Essex Wife throughout the coming month, plus I’ll be back here on Britmums blogging from the festival and sharing with you all my festival highlights when I return.

Wish me luck….

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6 Responses to Festivals with children – Am I mad?

  1. Sonya Cisco 10 July 2013 at 15:03 #

    You will have a fab time, I have always taken mine, they love it! 🙂

  2. Beach Hut Cook 10 July 2013 at 15:58 #

    You will have a blast! Camp Bestival is definitely a great family festival and a top place to start festival life.

    We’ve taken our kids to festivals for years and they adore this time. We love spending such magical time with them. My best memory is being escorted out of a mosh pit by my eldest teen who then acted like my own close protection officer through out the rest of the gig and told me that if I did that again he would have to take me back to the tent!

    Best of times. Memory bank stuff.
    Beachhutcook x

  3. the mmmmm family 12 July 2013 at 08:36 #

    You will have a fabulous time! This is something my husband and I want to do with our kids but health complications over last few years and restricted funds have made it impossible. I’m making it one of my goals to do one family festival next summer. Go for it and live it to the full as you’re right life is about making memories.

  4. Mummy Whisperer 12 July 2013 at 10:23 #

    Thanks so much for mentioning my blog post lovely! You will have SO MUCH fun – and I think that you have picked well for a first time. They’ve just offered me a day ticket, so I might even see you there!

  5. Louise Barrett 13 July 2013 at 08:13 #

    I took my boy to his first festival age 5. He absolutely loved it. He has been to many gigs and events since. He is a big music lover, developed by his exposure to live music. One piece of advice I would give you with little ones is get them some kid size ear defenders, that way they can get real close to the music without damaging their ears.

    Have fun, I am sure you will all have a fab time. I found it was more enjoyable going there and not getting drunk!


  6. Katie Stone 15 July 2013 at 14:18 #

    We recently went to Staxtonbury Music Festival with an 8 and 4 year old and a 20 month old. We had a brilliant time and had no problems at all.
    We took ear defenders for our 20 month old but he wouldn’t keep them on very long.
    Just remember to take plenty of nappies. we use disposables and had to ask a neighboring camper if we could have one of theirs as I underestimated how much my son would drink as it was incredibly hot.

    Good Luck and I hope you have fun!