Yes, I well know that feeling. I gradually introduced my wife to basic shelter camping. We started with a small tent. Added a tarp...about ten years later we got another tarp and lighter tent with removeable inner canopy. We dropped the fly and just brought the tarp/canopy for a year or two. Then we got another tarp and a light bug net tent for "woods" camping. Now that's all we bring. The whole process took about 20 years...I am glad to hear your partner is amenable to it already.
The tarp will also reflect heat, making a pleasent camp. It will also act like a big "ear" and let you hear the loons across the lake well when you get back in it.
It makes a good wind break, up to about 20mph. One of those items that I really like to have. Either with a tent or as my only shelter, I always have a tarp.
There are a lot of chemical treatments out there. Aqua-Mira is as good as any, better than most. A couple micro-dropper bottles from the BPL site will let you drop about half the weight and size. But, it does not store for too long. (BTW: use a drop extra per liter if you use smaller bottles.) I also have a Steripen Aventuror (not the new one: Opti.) Soo, on long trips, if I need fast water, I use it. If not, I just use AM.
Stoves and fuel....well, I count on my stove for water backup. I *must* have water.
My break-even for fuel is about 3-5 days with two people (WG vs Alcohol.) Avoid a Simmerlite. I burn about 3 times as much fuel as in my SVEA to accomplish the same thing. A very ineficient stove.
For WG, I like my SVEA. No pump to break. Super reliability. An integrated tank. A slow burner (max 4700BTU.) Comes with a cup. Rugged. Cheap to use. Very efficient on fuel usage. But, it is heavy at 17oz (empty, no cup.)
I don't. Adding the canister weight to the fuel weight makes them about half as efficient as they would otherwise be. Close to a 1:1, weight of fuel and weight of canister (4oz fuel, 3.7oz canister.) Really expensive to use, too. (I have purchased and used several...all given away...) I would use the alcohol stoves, first.
Caldera Cone. Simply the best setup for simply boiling water with alcohol. The bad part is the fuel. Heavy for the heat content. If WG is a 1, Alcohol is about 5/8.
Dirty, smelly, and not real good small stove fuel. Many years ago, this was touted as the one to get for international travel. Now, you cannot travel with it. Most of these weigh a bit heavier than a WG stove.
Good for camping. But, it is dirty. Like kero, it gets soot all over everything, no matter how hard you try to avoid it. You also have to bring a grate. Or, purchase a pot with bail handle. Or a special set up (Bushbuddy, Trail Designs, ilk) Many places do not allow open fires. Wood stoves also count as open fires where they have this restriction...usually. But, fuel is free, soo this is the cheapest to operate.