So recently we shut the shop for a week, whilst we relocated to Worthy Farm.
Being Somerset residents we have done A LOT of Glastonbury Festivals. I first went aged 11, and have been every year I can since then.
When I posted on social media to warn people the shop would be shut I had several messages - ranging from shock, horror and disbelief that I was even considering taking my children to a festival! I also had several messages from people asking HOW I did it! My stock answer when anyone asks is "Cider", but actually there are also a LOT of lists.
I've no experience of taking 'bigger children' but I've done one Glastonbury with a 6 month old, and another with a 2.5 year old and an 11 month old!
So, here are some tips for surviving a festival with small people.
- Lists, lists, lists - It is a well known fact among people that know me. I love a list. Classic Virgo. But they are really useful in for making sure you have got everything you need and not forgotten something incredibly obvious.
- Plot ahead - Find out about 'family camping' areas and any services the festival provides- generally these are filled with families who all want to try and sleep at some point! For example, Glastonbury has the Kidzfield - filled with mind blowing stuff for smalls, as well as an area filled with bottle warmers, sterilizers, microwaves and other really useful baby stuff. They even do bathtime everyday at 5pm!
- Prepare for every eventuality! Sun cream and waterproofs at the ready - oh and a sun hat!
- Transport - bike trailer, wheel barrow, off road buggy. It doesn't matter what. There is a lot of walking/standing at festivals and tired small people will be a lot happier if they can have a rest!
- Calpol and plasters. Just bring them.
- Snacks snack snacks snacks snack. Yeah. Bring lots. Will save you a fortune and always good for diffusing a meltdown!
- Ear defenders. You might like a thumping bass line, babies not so much.
- Bring a big ol' rug/blanket. Can be put on the floor to play on in the day, and can be used to snuggle them up when it gets cooler.
- Potty/Bucket in the tent - to avoid any middle of the night trips to the toilet!
- Go with the flow. I know it is easier said than done. I'm a prepper, a planner - some would say a control freak! However, festivals are time to let all that go. Don't try to pack in too much each day, and just be led by how you (and the small people) feel. Don't expect your festival experience to be the same as festivals 'pre children'. Having experienced Glastonbury both with and without children, I will admit, they are very different. However, it is good different. Festivals are a sensual delight, and watching your small people experience that is a wonderful thing.
I've done this twice now. I''m already counting down to next year, so it can't be that bad!