We’re Going Camping!

zero waste camping newbie

For the last several years, I have been wanting to camp.
Even before I moved back to Canada I wanted to spend time hiking and camping. I feel at home in nature.
I lived in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains . . . I should have been living in the woods.

After making a post on Facebook about my youngest child wanting a tent, my cousin offered to give us a couple of tents. We took her up on the offer and we ended up with a six person tent and a giant four room tent. Score!

I may lose come “Canadian” points here, but I loathe winter.
It’s fun for a little bit. A day or two of sledding or snowshoeing… but after four or five months of the gruelling cold — I am over it. It makes me wonder how I enjoyed it as a child and wanted to spend every waking moment outside.
I now believe that this is why summer is so valued here and why everyone essentially lives outside during the summer. We all secretly hate winter.

I am fortunate to live to close to Gatineau Park.
Gatineau Park is a 361 square km conservation park that is located only a few minutes from downtown Ottawa-Gatineau.

As soon as they opened up the online reservations for camping in Gatineau Park, I jumped at getting us a reservation. I wanted it to be early enough in the summer that if they kids enjoyed it. we could return.

Reservations made, tents on hand . . . then it hit me.
I have never been camping on my own, as an adult. And I am taking kids?
What do I need?
What will they eat?
Will they be scared?
How cold will it get?
What did I get myself into?
How will we fit everything into our trunk?
Can I even set up the tent?!
How bored will the kids be?

I have two weeks to plan and get everything together.
I want to try and make this as minimal waste as possible and I also don’t want to buy all kinds of things to take that may only be used once.
I really think the thing that worries me the most is running out of food, or Teghan deciding that she wants a very specific food item that she hasn’t even mentioned in months while we are out in the woods.

I am fairly confident that I can pull it all together.
I just didn’t think about all of these decisions and the planning involved before I made the reservation.


planning a zero waste camping trip



World Environment Day 2020

World Environment Day, celebrated each year on June 5th, is a day set aside by the United Nations to bring attention to a pressing environmental issue. This year, the spotlight is on biodiversity!

The variety of animals, plants, fungi and micro-organisms that make up our natural world work together to provide everything we need to survive: food, clean water, medicine, and shelter. Some people are not aware that a loss of biodiversity is just as great a threat as climate change to our world today. The loss of biodiversity can lead to a loss of services that nature provides that are essential to the functioning of our society and economy. As an example, most people are familiar with the loss of bees and pollinators and its potential negative effects on our food supply.

As natural historian, Sir David Attenborough, said at the start of Our Planet documentary, “Never has it been more important to understand how the natural world works and how to help it.”

Fundamentally, biodiversity is the key to the future of humanity.

We are lucky to have a walking trail that goes through the woods with a wetland ecosystem close to our house. Unfortunately, that means an abundance of mosquitoes. On our walks, we have seen beavers, deer, and ducks. The kids love seeing the wildlife and the changing water levels with the seasons. They don’t seem that keen on my mini lectures on ecosystem management. I like to hope that some of that knowledge is sticking.

Wetlands are important ecosystems! Wetlands help to sequester carbon, improve water quality, control erosion, helps to maintain stream flow and catches overflow, and provides a habit for many types of endangered and threatened flora and fauna.

On social media, you can join in on World Environment Day by using the hastags, #WorldEnvironmentDay and #ForNature

Biodiversity World Environment Day