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What to Pack When Going Out With Children in the Summer

I know, I know. All we do is talk about the weather around here. If you are prepared to talk about the weather, anyone will have a conversation with you in England! I love living here. I really do. Where is the sun hiding, though? One minute, it is pouring down with rain, the next it is warm enough to wear flip flops and a tank top but the sun is hiding behind the clouds. Rant over (sorry!).

I live for sunshine. It is my fuel, my source of energy and my happiness gauge, all at the same time, so as soon as the big bright ball is showing its nose, I am outdoors with the kids! I am a much nicer person when I am out and about, and my children are far better behaved than if they were stuck indoors.

Every year at the start of spring, I spend half an hour or so packing a bag that stays by the front door, ready for spontaneous outings. That means not stressing about something that is meant to be relaxing (being outdoors enjoying the sun!).  I first wrote an article about this a couple of years ago. I just updated it so I could publish it again, with the addition of a short video. I hope you enjoy it!

Here is what we keep in our pre-packed bag:

  • Sunscreen – We use SunSense as it is ideal for eczema sufferers.
  • Sunglasses & hats
  • Nappies
  • Wipes – a new pack every time so the wipes do not dry out.
  • Tissues
  • A few coins – change for toilets, car park or a cold drink
  •  Snacks that do not melt –  cereal bars, a couple of packets of biscuits
  • A bottle of water – I always go for Evian with a sports cap (everyone including baby can use it)
  • A couple of plastic bags – can be used as bins, sick bags, bags for wet clothes…
  • Spare clothes – underwear & light outfit as well as a cardigan for each child
  • Even if you are not planning to go anywhere near water, it is a good idea to pack swimsuits for all the children, HUGGIES® Little Swimmers®  nappies as well as a couple of towels they could share. You never know; you might go past a paddling pool, a fountain or water features. HUGGIES® Little Swimmers® are an essential item in our bag for our impromptu days out in the summer. They are easy to put on and take off, and they do not expand in the water or leak. Spontaneous splashing, anyone?

 I normally add these in an insulated bag at the last minute:

  • If I have space in the freezer, I usually put two or three bottles (3/4 filled) in there the night before for water that remains cold for hours. Contact with the ice-cold bottle is also a nice way to relieve my girls’ eczema.
  • When we are going to a local park, I also pack frozen yoghurt, smooze or smoothie tubes as well as scissors for a lovely fresh treat we all enjoy as soon as we arrive at the park.

Other items you might want to include:

  • Insect repellent
  • Sand toys
  • Inflatable ball
  • Waterproofs
  • Plasters
  • Arnica

Having that bag ready by the front door means I do not have to think about what to take and I can focus on getting my four little ones ready. It is liberating to find my inner child and fully enjoy my children by sitting on the side of the paddling pool as they are having fun, splashing them, meeting friends and their little ones, cheering as they do a forward roll on the grass or jumping on the kids’ zip wire when no-one is looking.

What to Pack When Going Out With Children in the Summer

As far as snacks are concerned, I normally go for biscuits we all like as well as a pack of ‘free from’ Lazy Day Foods one for Jumpy, who has a range of allergies.

The rest of us have biscuits!

BN - Cheeky Smiles

If you could pack just three things when going out with children in the summer, what would they be?


We are working with HUGGIES® Little Swimmers® this year and I have received payment for this blog post, but all opinions and photos are my own. 

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Pre-Packed Bag for Stress Free Summer Days out


  1. tricia Cowell
    12/07/2016 / 12:16 pm

    Wipes suncream and a dinosaur, they are all necessary for my 2 year old Grandson

  2. mynellie
    12/07/2016 / 1:57 pm

    a towel, sunscrean plus big bottle of water

  3. katy bulcock
    12/07/2016 / 5:39 pm

    great idea 🙂 when going out with our son the three main essentials would be his train box (includes a small talking thomas train and some old tickets which he likes to hand to people) wipes! – there a must for a messy toddler and pennies as he likes to buy his own snacks like a big boy 🙂

  4. Lyndsay Spencer
    12/07/2016 / 5:57 pm

    Baby wipes, juice to drink and sun cream

  5. Deborah Mackenzie
    12/07/2016 / 7:12 pm

    snacks, towel and suncream

  6. Jemma Webster
    12/07/2016 / 8:14 pm

    His toy monkey, his ocean music and muslin squares 🙂

  7. Pia Stephens
    12/07/2016 / 9:00 pm

    With three little ones I attend to pack as much as I can the previous night, sandwiches ready and foiled (no moist bits in or they get soggy mind you), cucumber slices and cherry tomatoes into containers, drinks into the fridge etc.

    If I’d have to choose just 3 items it would have to be sun cream, purse (for ice creams, snacks, drinks etc) and wet wipes 😉

  8. Lisa Mauchline
    12/07/2016 / 9:16 pm

    This is such a great idea. My 3 things would be sun cream, nappies and wipes.

  9. Emma gough
    12/07/2016 / 10:05 pm

    Sun cream, wipes and water – all very essential items 🙂

  10. Nicole Farao
    12/07/2016 / 10:16 pm

    suncream, a hat, wetwipes

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