Are you ready for a Summer of Adventure?

Before you head out on your next day trip or weekend getaway, add these items to your backpack.

Summer Adventure Gear for Microadventurers - Kam of Campfire Chic

 

This blog post contains Amazon affiliate links. Purchases made through these links will result in a small commission for me at no extra cost to you. If you do not wish to use affiliate links, simply copy the product names in this post and paste them into your favorite search engine. Thank you!

I was looking back on this list of gear I was trying out two summers ago and thinking about how I’m still using several of the products and what I learned from them. The sandals are still a staple in my wardrobe, I have some of that chocolate (new! I promise!) in my freezer, there are oatmeal packs on my desk…you get the point. I’m still using things that I tested out two years ago and I’m happy to talk about them if you have questions!

That post motivated me to share a few things I’m using this summer that I think you’ll dig, too.

The adventure gear I think you’ll want in your pack this summer:

SoftFlask™ Collapsible Water Flask by Hydrapak

I wasn’t too sure about this “flask” showed up in the mail…It didn’t seem like it was very big and I wasn’t sure how I would include it in my life. It won’t stand up on its own after you start to drink from it, so it’s not ideal for the gym.

The small size does make it good for when you’re out for an evening walk and don’t want to carry a big Nalgene-style bottle with you. It’s easy to hold and the valve on the 250ml SoftFlask auto seals so you’re not spilling on yourself. The website says this flask is also good for gels and other drink mixes, so I imagine this would be a good size if you prefer to have electrolyte drinks or coconut water.

 

Buckshot 2.0 Wireless Speaker by Outdoor Tech

This small but mighty wireless speaker is a great option for active individuals or if you need something around your house that can survive a little attention from your tiny adventurers or curious cats. Please respect other people and the wildlife while exploring by not blasting your music in crowded.

They are also nice to have around the house since my husband and I are podcast junkies. Since the Buckshot 2.0 is waterproof, this is a good option if you are looking for a speaker for your bathroom so you can listen to podcasts while in the shower!

Alex snagged the Tags 2.0 wireless earbuds (not an affiliate link) before I knew the package arrived and he likes that it was a fast pairing, easy to charge…and the logo. He slapped one of the stickers that came in the box on his laptop and is holding onto another so he can add it to our bear canister.

 

Go With Your Flow Mini Pack by Animosa

I backed the Go With Your Flow pack by Animosa on Kickstarter this year and I’m so glad I did. Having your period shouldn’t keep you from enjoying the outdoors. Animosa created an adventure kit with periods in mind. I received the Mini Pack, which was designed for day adventures, plus a refill pack as my backer gift and I’m really impressed! I like that the main pouch (pictured above) was designed to fit a variety of period supplies and a removable pouch to keep your used supplies from your fresh supplies.

The other great part about this product? It’s made by adventurous women for adventurous women! They are all about empowering women and I’m looking forward to seeing this brand grow. You can reserve your pack and learn more about their mission on the Animosa website.

 

Brilliant Reflective Strips

When you think of reflective strips, you probably think of the silver or red strips that are super helpful but maybe a bit…blah. I received a set of Brilliant Reflective Strips and what is so cool about these strips is that they come in different colors so they can match my gear! The strips come in iron-on (permanent) and stick-on (removable) so if you’re like me and have commitment issues when it comes to putting stickers or decals on things, there is an option for you!

My plan is to put these strips on some of our camping gear and my backpacks so it’s easy to see obstacles around camp once the sun goes down. I think these will be great on the side of camping chairs near the fire pit and on the base of lanterns.  It’s also nice to have a way to know where my site is when I’m in a crowded campground.

Trailfoody Monthly Subscription for Day Adventures

One of my least favorite things about packing snacks is how everything seems to be centered around peanuts and peanut butter. I like the idea of trying new snacks and having a variety of things in my pack, but sometimes it is hard to pick out what to try when I’m faced with dozens of choices at the store. When Trailfoody approached me to see if I would like to try May’s regular box (which includes at least 9 treats plus the stuff sack) I was curious to see how many ways peanut butter would be featured in the box. Fast forward to packing for a long weekend in Michigan and wanting to have enough snacks for the plane and driving around the state. I loaded the stuff sack full of snacks into my carry on for easy access. We were so happy to have these snacks essentially handpicked for us so we didn’t have to worry about stopping at the store to pick anything up. It gave us the opportunity to try new products and make notes of what we would buy in the future.

I like that the Trailfoody blog includes individual posts for the different featured foods throughout the month to give readers an idea of what is in the boxes and shows that somebody is trying the food before they get into the box. You can check out the different ways to get a Trailfoody (not affiliate) delivered to your door on their site. The cost of the box is worth the try considering the cost of the products if you bought them individually at the store and buying the stuff sack. For those gear heads wondering about the stuff sack: this 6L bag weighs 0.9 ounces. Yes, I totally asked for you. 

Have a great summer!

The items featured in this post were sent to me for possible review. The opinions expressed in this post are my own. I only share items I try myself and believe Campfire Chic readers will like and find useful. As mentioned earlier, there are affiliate links used in this post. Thank you for your support by shopping through those links. 

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in Active, Adventure, From a Beginner, Gear Review, Hiking, Microadventure, Review

Ali Edwards hosted Week in the Life (WITL) in April and I tried to post photos at the end of the each day here as a way to keep myself accountable to participating in the challenge. WITL is one of my favorite projects, but it can be difficult to keep up throughout an entire week and I hoped that sharing a blog post at the end of each day would make it easier to go back at a later date to put the stories into a mini album.

It worked.

Week in the Life 2017 Mini Scrapbook Album

Week in the Life Scrapbook Mini Album - Kam of Campfire Chic

My album is 4×6 inches and the covers are white chipboard. I used patterned cardstock from different paper lines to decorate the cover and foam Thickers to make the title. I handwrote “hey it’s…” and “2017” using markers and I’m happy that I included some of my handwriting on the cover instead of just sticking to stamps or alpha stickers.

I used kraft colored cardstock for my pages and each one is 4×6 in size. Many of my mini albums have pages that are different sizes and different types of paper but I decided that it was easier (and quicker!) to stick with one size and type.

The entire album is bound with two rings through holes I made using my handy dandy crop-a-dile. I love that thing and it’s been one of my essential items for years.

Week in the Life Mini Scrapbook Album - Kam of Campfire Chic

Each day starts with a blank page with a white letter sticker for the day of the week and the day stamped below. Super simple and clean compared to the layering and journaling.

The photos from the days are in chronological order and I tried to use my ever-growing collection of stamps whenever I could. I also tried to mix in stickers and different patterned and printed pieces throughout to help me use up some of my stash that I may not use otherwise.

2017 Week in the Life Scrapbook Album - Campfire Chic

As the week goes on, I got a little more adventurous with my layouts. I tried to fit in layouts with many photos and layouts with single photos to keep things interesting and to challenge myself.

I also tried to step out of my comfort zone a bit by using papers that I love since I tend to hold off on using them because I’m so obsessed with looking at them. I also tried to use patterns and colors I don’t usually reach for like florals and pinks.

Week in the Life April 2017 - Kam of Campfire Chic

My week runs from Monday, April 17th through Saturday, April 22nd. I know that Ali’s challenge was scheduled to run through Sunday, but after all the sun and heat from Saturday, I wasn’t in the mood to document on Sunday of trying to recover and trying to figure out how to play Overwatch.

You can see my previous Week in the Life projects here.

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in About Kam, Memory Keeping, Scrapbooking, Week in the Life, What I Made

I mentioned a new creative retreat last month called Awesome Ladies Live hosted by Kristin of the Awesome Ladies Project. I went and enjoyed the long weekend of activities and want to share some photos and behind-the-scenes info about the retreat with you today. Dates for the next Awesome Ladies Live will be to those who are a part of the (free or VIP) Awesome Ladies Project, so I suggest getting on that ASAP.

Awesome Ladies Live Weekend 2017

The first Awesome Ladies Live Event was held over the weekend of June 9, 2017. I spent an extended weekend in East Lansing, Michigan with a great group of women to talk about documenting our stories, the Creatives who inspire us, and further friendships that started online.

Awesome Ladies Live - Mirror Selfie

Alex and I flew into Michigan late Thursday and made our way to Ann Arbor for a bite to eat before getting into East Lansing to see our friends and get rested for the weekend. I had a stressful week at work and wanted to sleep for a thousand years so I was happy that our Friday started out slower than expected.

 

Awesome Ladies Live Weekend - Wall of information

Awesome Ladies Live Weekend Retreat Group Photo

Kristin kicked off the weekend by hosting a casual dinner at her house for Awesome Ladies Live participants. Kristin and Jeff prepared a DIY pizza station and grilled chicken, hot dogs, and sausages. We spent time in the back yard taking photos and enjoying the weather.

There was a lot of food and it was a great way for everyone to meet and hang out before diving into the work planned for the next day!

Awesome Ladies Live Event - 30 Days of Lists Breakfast

Amy and I hosted a breakfast the morning of the event to make sure we all had plenty of coffee to get us through the morning after a late night. We met up at Grand Traverse Pie Company for a light breakfast (and pie!) before heading over to the hotel conference room for the event.

Breakfast participants were gifted a 30 Days of Lists traveler’s notebook, pencil set, and will receive a code for free registration to September’s #30Lists challenge.

Awesome Ladies Live Event - 30 Days of Lists Team

I don’t think Amy and I got any photos of the two of us the entire weekend other than this blurry one in a mirror. Next time!

Awesome Ladies Live - Workbook Details

The rest of Saturday was dedicated to making vision boards, going through a kickass workbook Kristin created, and starting a mini-album using a few techniques Kristin demonstrated.

Awesome Ladies Live - Instagram

Kristin walked around the room while she lectured and encouraged discussion as we worked on our projects. I was in charge of the The_Awesome_Ladies_Project Instagram account for the weekend and tried to capture different projects from the participants and quotes from Kristin.

Awesome Ladies Live Event - This is my story

Amy and I took photos of everyone with their “this is my story” cards. The lighting in the conference room was terrible for project photos, so we asked folks to step outside into the atrium to get these photos. It was the perfect time of day to capture these photos.

This is off-topic but the shirt I’m wearing in these photos is from Feminist Apparel and you can purchase it here. If you sign up for their newsletter you can get a discount! I am not an affiliate, I just love the shirt and think you will love their products, too.

Awesome Ladies Live Event - Work Tables

It was great to see the different tools and supplies people brought to the event! Most of the ladies were fairly local so some were able to bring their crop bags, which was great when someone like me only had a few things but really could use a tiny attacher for the project. Thanks for sharing, ladies!

It was nice to try out different techniques and tools that I wouldn’t normally try and work with a paper line I probably wouldn’t buy on my own. Why? Because I have the tendency to only want to work with the papers I LOVE and if I love them that much I hold off on using them because what if I screw up?

Awesome Ladies Live - Crop Time

I printed my photos before the event through Persnickety Prints. I love that they offer different size options and the shipping was quicker than I expected. They were able to get a large order (100+ photos in different sizes) to me so fast! The quality is great and they have fantastic customer service.

I returned home inspired to spend less time playing video games (I am obsessed with Overwatch right now) and more time putting past trips and adventures into scrapbooks. It will help that it’s summer so I have more light in the evenings when I come home to work and take photos to share. I even got up the nerve to apply to a creative team!

To find out more about the Awesome Ladies Project, visit the website and follow on Instagram.

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in Blog Friends, Memory Keeping, Scrapbooking, Weekend

This book review of Backpacking 101 by Heather Balogh Rochfort contains affiliate links to Amazon.com. The book was provided for possible review by the publishing company. Opinions are my own. 

Backpacking 101 by Heather Balogh Rochfort

Backpacking 101 book by Heather Balogh Rochfort - Book Review by Kam of Campfire Chic

Maybe you’ve been a day hiker for years and you’re ready to take the leap to backpacking. Or perhaps you’re new to the trails entirely, and you’re looking for a fun way to get some exercise in the fresh air. Whatever your experience level, Backpacking 101 is all you need (besides youre gear) – Back cover, Backpacking 101

You may know Heather as the blogger behind Just a Colorado Gal. She’s been sharing her outdoor and international adventures since 2005, including trips to Iceland, Jordan, and New Zealand. She is a backpacker, skier, trail runner, and recently announced that she is expecting a new member to the family in early October!

I really enjoy backpacking and wish I spent more weekends on the trail. I know I can always learn something new when it comes to being outdoors, so I was happy to check out Heather’s first book. You can purchase the book on Amazon in paperback or digital for Kindle.

About the book

This 200+ resource is a great pick for those of us who enjoy having information all in one place. I know that many of us get our information about new outdoor activities and places to explore from various blogs and websites, but piecing together information from different sources can take a lot of time and get you to a point of information overload.

Backpacking 101 is broken down into different chapters, which makes it easy to jump back and forth depending on what information you need. There are the basics like packing your backpack, different kinds of footwear, and appropriate clothing for your adventures. There are also other chapters on necessary topics that don’t always get covered because some people may consider them “common sense” and not as important as the basic topics covered above. These chapters include backcountry etiquette, setting up camp (including your kitchen), making your bed, and emergency situation. Heather also included a few appendices at the end, including one for trekking with dogs.

Review

As I worked my way through the book, there was information that I already knew based on my own experiences outdoors, but there was also information I know I can learn more about. You know those things you should do in life but don’t do because you’re lazy/uninterested/comfortable doing what you’re already doing (like having one spot for my taxes so I can add things to it throughout the year, updating my resume even though I’m not necessarily looking for a job, etc.). I was reminded that I need to really focus on getting better at packing my bag and take a course on navigation.

One thing I like about the book is that Heather included Chapter Summaries at the end of each chapter, which highlights points she covered throughout the section. Generally, there is space on this page under the summary to include your own notes. It’s not lined like one of the appendix sections, but I think it would be a good spot to include notes as you are learning about backpacking.

If Heather decides to put out a second edition of this book or make another resource, I hope it’s about finding backpacking trips to take. The planning portion can be the hardest part for me when I’m trying to piece together information from blogs and there is information missing. I like Heather’s writing style and feel like she would be able to give some good information on the topic.

You can order a copy of Backpacking 101 by Heather Balogh Rochfort from Amazon. 

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in Adventure, Backpacking, Books, From a Beginner, Gear Review, Hiking, Review

I think I’m officially in love with Travelers-style Notebooks! I finally put together a Travelers Notebook (TN) during International Scrapbook Weekend using Kristin’s Awesome Ladies Printable Scrapbook.

I printed out the scrapbook pages on single pages (I did not print double-sided) and used my tape runner to put my pages together and used my long-range stapler to get the connected pages attached to the cover. My cover is a basic kraft cardstock and nothing too special.

I didn’t print double-sided because I wanted to organize the prompt pages in a specific order and figured I could stamp without worrying about the ink bleeding through to the next page.

About Me Traveler’s Notebook Printable Scrapbook

Printable Scrapbook Awesome Ladies Project - by Kam of Campfire Chic

 

I tried to stick with the patterned paper and stickers from the National Scrapbook Day Currently Me kit Kristin put together to make my pages feel cohesive and to cut down on making decisions. Too many choices slows me down when I’m scrapbooking.

I decided to focus on layering in this album instead of trying to keep things quick and easy. On my first layout, I layered stickers, patterned paper, and washi tape with my photo. I know that may not seem like a big deal to some people, but using that many stickers on one layout is not something I would normally try.

The photo above is from a birthday trip to Austin, Texas in 2016.

Printable Travelers Notebook Insert for Scrapbooking - Kam of Campfire Chic

 

I snagged this photo from Paulina’s blog post about our camping weekend in February and knew it belonged in this TN. I will almost always mount a photo on some cardstock or patterned paper, and this time was no exception. I love how it helps the photo stand out while also helping the overall design of the page.

Here, I created a background by stamping the same word over and over to create a pattern. I used the word EXPLORE from a Kelly Purkey kit and I love that it gives a different color but doesn’t create a heavy pattern to distract from the overall layout.

I cut out some hearts from a small pattern to emphasize my love for these ladies.

Tell Your Story with a Printable Scrapbook Travelers Notebook - Kam of Campfire Chic

 

If you are hesitant to buy a product like a Printable Scrapbook because you want to have flexibility with the prompts, let me remind you that you can do whatever you want, it’s your project!

I already had plans for including Alex and Rintu in this album and I wanted to use a group photo from our weekend in San Antonio in my album so I updated the prompt by adding the word INTERNET to the left-hand side of the layout.

For this layout, I used more Kelly Purkey stamps and some coordinating paper to keep things simple and try a different-to-me layout to keep things fresh. I wanted to pull out the coral from Amy’s dress in this layout to give a break from the yellow I am using the in TN. There was a bit of pink in the previous layout to help give that cohesive feeling.

Travelers Notebook for Your Stories - Kam of Campfire Chic

 

I love this TN but I think it was this layout that really made me fall in love with this project. I used a recent elevator selfie because I have quite a few on my camera role. This photo was a good choice because there is a little bit of pink and a little bit of yellow on my dress. Honestly, it was too good!

I trimmed the photo to a smaller size, used three different kinds of patterned paper and a patterned vellum to give some organized chaos to this layout. I used more Kelly Purkey stamps and repeated WORK for two reasons: the mirror in the photo creates a repeated image and because my everyday life is generally work work work. It’s little details that make me extra happy with my work.

About the Awesome Ladies Printable Scrapbook

The Printable Scrapbook when assembled, is approximately the size of the popular Traveler’s Notebooks and fits in standard size folios. There are 32 pages inside including a front cover, double-page introduction spread, fourteen double-page prompt spreads, and a back cover. That gives you plenty of room for your storytelling projects!

The Printable Scrapbook was designed to be printed either double-sided or single-sided. The original Printable Scrapbook can be heavy on black ink, so it’s great for black and white laser printers. The light version of The Printable Scrapbook uses 80% less black ink and is perfect for ink conservation or printing on patterned paper.

Learn more about the Printable Scrapbook and buy it here

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in About Kam, Memory Keeping, Scrapbooking, What I Made