Normally, noticing the longer daylight hours and seasonal flowers in bloom at this time of year, my family & I begin to look forward to our regular camping trips - festivals, campouts with friends and short breaks away with our extended family.

Not so today. With COVID-19 upon us, our hearts are heavy as we see more and more of our favorite activities understandably postponed or even cancelled. We're in self-isolation as I write this.

So now my thoughts are turning to making this Spring & Summer count in a different way. I want to make new, positive memories for my teenage daughters who today find themselves isolated from their friends, and boyfriends. With their help we have come up with "The Holihome" - it's not a new word, we Googled it, but it is new in this context and it's new to us. We're pretty excited!

The Holihome

As the name suggests, it's quite simply a holiday at home. We're bringing the staycation closer to home. As soon as the weather permits (or maybe sooner if we deploy the Blaze stove), we will be pitching our SoulPad bell tent in the garden for a home campout. We've done this many times before for a few nights here and there, but on hearing the news today that Red Rooster festival is postponed and Glastonbury is cancelled, I wanted to re-group with my girls, and remind them we have everything we need to have a great outdoor experience here at home.


So we got our heads together to draw on our past experiences to make this next garden campout extra special, and hopefully with more of a festival vibe. Here, we share our ideas with you:

Ideas & Must-haves: -

  1. A campfire
  2. Sweets & chocolate
  3. Make some flags & bunting
  4. Comfy beds with bedding and blankets from our bedrooms
  5. Comfy chairs
  6. A space in the tent for Ozzie the dog to sleep
  7. Amplified music and percussion instruments (learn how to play them properly!)
  8. A special 'holihome' shared playlist on Spotify (a rare chance for us to listen to each others prefered music)
  9. Snacks and basic food to cook on the campfire (take it in turns to cook a meal outdoors)
  10. Everyone to sleep in the 'Pad while it is up (no slinking off!)
  11. Take the 'Pad down after 2 weeks max. to keep the experience special and not just an extension of our home. We can always re-pitch it for a second holihome if the isolation continues.
  12. Mobile WiFi - to keep up-to-date with friends, family, the news etc
  13. Power (extension cables to the 'Pad)
  14. Rugs from the lounge and camping mats for extra squish
  15. A pack of playing cards
  16. Craft stuff

Things we don't need: -

'Cuz it will be just us and there won't be any visitors.

  1. Make-up, hair straightners, beard trimmers and all other beauty related stuff
  2. Our best, clean clothes - we can re-wear and slum it a little/ a lot!
  3. Bad attitudes! Positive vibes only.

We plan to only go inside for breakfast and lunch or if we need to shower, wash the pots, grab a book or use the toilet.

Personally, I'm really looking forward to our first, proper holihome. I feel fortunate that we have the space here in Norfolk to do this. I'll enjoy some quality time with the girls and my husband Mark. I'll turn my attention to some gardening chores, pick up the ukelele again and play with the dog more too.

If you too are in a position to do this, the SoulPad bell tent sale has currently been extended ;)