How to Make Summer Camping Themed Gift Baskets

As you head to the backyard, the park or the country this summer, arm yourself with summer camping themed gift baskets filled with everything you need to keep mosquitoes away and prevent sunburn.

Anything to do with the out-of-doors during the summer means bugs and heat. Unfortunately, it's hard to find a summer picnicking area that hasn't already been discovered by mosquitoes, and it's equally hard to sit inside all summer and watch picnicking opportunities pass you by.

But you don't have to let a few mosquitoes or the sun's rays ruin your camping, picnicking or hiking fun. A Summer Camping Gift Basket may not sound glamorous, but your friends and family will be grateful that you have thought of ways to make their time outside even more comfortable.

The Basket Basics
Pack these items, and you'll be on your way to having a bug-free and burn-free time:

  • Sunscreen that protects from UVA and UVB rays
  • Skin So Soft body lotion
  • Citronella bracelets
  • Citronella candles
  • Flyswatter
  • Bandages for bug bites

Many people prefer to avoid mosquito sprays because they include pesticides. Some natural mosquito repellents include rosemary, catnip, marigolds and of course, citronella.

As for the citronella bracelets, you can put the bracelets on ankles rather than wrists. On the ankle, they're out of the way, you don't smell them as much and they're still doing the job they were intended to do. Last of all is the ultimate bug repellent, a flyswatter. Don't leave home without one.

Staked citronella candles may be more effective than table-top candles. Place the stakes in a 12-foot perimeter around the picnic table or camping area, which is far enough way so you don't have to worry about anyone getting burned, yet close enough so that the scent still keeps the bugs away. Candles and hot wax are dangerous, so be careful when using stake candles, or any candles, especially where children are present. Also be careful to keep candles away from foliage and flammable materials, and don't leave them burning unattended.

Bug Bites Are Inevitable
Since mosquito bites itch, people, especially children, will scratch. Sometimes it's best to just slap a bandage over bites that are easily accessible to little (or large) fingers, as scratching can lead to infection. For those hard-to-reach places, a backscratcher might come in handy. Just don't scratch too much, and you'll be okay.

When mosquito bites get the best of you and your family, pick up some oatmeal bath soap, or make an oatmeal poultice by wrapping several thicknesses of cheesecloth around a few tablespoons of oatmeal. Tie the oatmeal into a bag or pouch, and hang it over the bath faucet so that the warm water runs over it. The oatmeal should soothe the itch enough to make you comfortable.

Other Reminders
Pack your Summer Camping Gift Basket early in the year, and keep it handy all summer. That way, if you decide on the spur of the moment to take a hike, your necessities will already be packed. Just toss the basket into the backseat, and away you go.

Last of all, you may be tempted to add food to your gift basket, but remember that anytime you head for the backyard or the country gift baskets might be vulnerable to heat. The strong smells of sunblock and insect repellent might also lend a strange aftertaste to the food. For that reason, you should pack food separately. And, if you do enjoy food outdoors, sprinkle cinnamon where you dine to discourage ants from joining you in the meal.

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