Camo girls picking up birds on the dove field

As a grandmother to four beautiful grands, whom I fondly call my “camo cuties,” I love nothing more than kindling their interest in all matters involving the outdoors. All three of my grandgirls —ages five, eight, and eleven—have picked up birds on a dove field with their daddy.

little girls who love camo

My Camo Cuties! 

Caroline, the eight-year-old, has sat in a deer stand and is very eager to shoot a hog. My two-year-old grandson is a bit young yet, but he already loves to go on nature walks and is lucky to be able to go to his Grandma Lolly’s “farm,” where he enjoys her donkey, chickens, dogs, cats, and horses!

toddler riding a mini horse

Boden has so much fun at Lolly and Pop’s farm!

child learning about feeding chickens

Don’t let the chickens out, Boden!

 

Grandma Lolly helps Boden feed the ducks on her farm!

The grand’s presents for Christmas 2021 had a hunting theme: Each child received a camo backpack filled with age-appropriate items they would need for an outdoor adventure or even a real hunt! I admit that I tend to overpack when heading outdoors, but I prefer to think of this as being prepared for just about anything. Many hunters get to their stands with their guns and binoculars, and that’s pretty much it. Not me! I have a feeling I am setting the trend with these special backpacks.

Camo backpack for children

Hunting gear!

I was thrilled to find these North Face backpacks and had so much fun filling them with lots of surprises. I included binoculars, headlamps, and pink, ammo-shaped sunscreen lip balm. Other handy items included a journal to document their hunts and adventures with notes, photos, and anything they harvested. Of course, snacks were essential, and a venison snack stick was at the top of the list—along with Nature Valley granola bars! Only Deer Park water bottles would do for these backpacks. More fun items included camo face paint and a handy little zippered camo pouch that included camo tissues, hand warmers, and camo Band-Aids.

Since Elinor is five years old, her bag was smaller and contained a cuddly deer, binoculars, snacks, and camo face paint. Baby Boden is two, and his bag also included a stuffed animal, a book, and binoculars.

camo backpacks for kids

Camo backpacks with age-appropriate gear and fun!

All the grands received a very cool miniature “ammo box,” a gift card holder I found at Bass Pro Shops, along with many other items. I put a little “doe” in the box rather than a gift card.

gift card holder

Great gift card ammo holder we filled with “doe”!

My hope is that the camo backpacks will stir the imaginations of these beautiful children. It is all about instilling a love for the outdoors and the hunting lifestyle into their hearts and minds so that they may carry on the hunting tradition in the future. Hunting provides endless outdoor opportunities and is a pathway to learning about science, animal habitats, biology, respect for nature, and the importance of conservation. It is a way to cultivate a hunter’s heart, even though lessons about killing an animal and fiercely protecting the species can be confusing, even for adults.

child learns about nature by skinning a deer foot at school

Biology lesson at school! Gibbes is skinning a deer foot at Hammond Academy.

Yes, it is on our backs as parents and grandparents to put the camo backpack on our young ones so that they can “carry the cause” of protecting our hunting traditions for generations to come.

 

 

Prois hunting apparel

Grandma GAGA                                                                                                                                              Written for Waccamaw Outdoor Magazine, January 2022 Issue