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
- Wipes – a new pack every time so the wipes do not dry out.
- A few coins – change for toilets, car park or a cold drink
- Snacks that do not melt – Organix 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
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.
The rest of us have biscuits!
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.