It’s camping season again! Every year we find ourselves looking through the camping equipment and realizing that we need to replace items, upgrade items or just take advantage of some of the new products on the market. Last year we replaced our old cooler with one that plugs in and stays cool for long drives and this year I picked up a new tent that can be put up in under a minute (it actually takes me about 5 minutes, but that’s still fantastic) and some new air mattresses for the kids. I was feeling prepared, until we went to my daughter’s first soccer game of the year.
You may wonder what soccer has to do with camping equipment. It’s the chairs! I grabbed a camp chair out of the garage and took it to her game and found it was faded, hard and cracking. We probably bought those chairs about a decade ago and this winter in the garage seemed to be the end for them. The chair (and the other chairs from the set) looked bad and felt worse. It was not a comfortable way to watch the game.
My husband and I headed off to Walmart with a $100 gift card and a goal in mind: comfort. We wanted two camp chairs and one queen size air mattress to use on our upcoming camping trip. Of course there is no shortage of camp chairs and air mattresses at Walmart and they range in price from extremely budget friendly to the lap of luxury. For our chairs we wanted something that was very comfortable, that looked nice and that would endure several seasons. I also want them to be easy to carry since they are used for family gatherings, sporting events and camping. To get all of this, I knew I wouldn’t be looking at the cheapest chairs.
The kids were with us on this shopping trip and they were all too happy to test out the different chairs. From child sized chairs to loungers, they tried them all and wanted most of them. My husband and I tried several too and we both agreed on a Coleman camp chair. It was very comfortable, had added lumbar support and it has a carrying handle attached to the actual chair. It also has a carrying case with a handle, but I appreciate having options. We found a red and a green chair. At $35 each, they were cutting into our $100, but they are worth every penny.
The next goal was an air mattress. With only $30 left in the budget, this was going to be tough, or at least I thought it would be. It actually wasn’t at all. Right in the middle aisle with a big rollback sign was a queen size air mattress with air pump. It is a simple air mattress without any bells and whistles, but it will do the trick for a couple of nights camping and the air pump is a big bonus. It was also $30 which was absolutely perfect.
In the end, we went over our budget by the taxes only and came away with some great items to get us through the rest of the summer.