Summer is Coming!
While it may already feel as though it’s arrived, it wont officially be summer for 9 more days! Summer break however, has already started for most kids around the country. Which means family outings and vacations are certainly on the horizon. If you’re planning any type of outing with your children this summer, a good packed bag is essential! Take a quick peek to find out what you should be packing this year!
10 Essential Summer Items Every Mom Should Travel with This Summer
My kids are 13, 11, and 5, so spare clothes typically aren’t something I normally think to keep on hand for outings. However, I learned something incredible about that recently. We had a fun park play date with some friends, and somehow all the kids ended up exploring the creek. Let’s just say, life is filled with unexpected messes. So a spare outfit for each kid, is never a bad idea!
With that said, clothes aren’t cheap! After some looking around and online browsing I came up with a simple (and cheap!) list of summertime spare clothes every mom should keep in her car! This definitely isn’t a list of your Sunday best, however they are all wonderful options for a quick outfit change when going straight home is out of the question. Check it out!
*Cheap towels & plastic bags are also great to pack for the occasional creek exploration!
Yes! I can’t even count the amount of times that I have run out somewhere (thinking it was going to be a super short trip, mostly indoors) and we ended up outside for hours! Times like these I always feel unprepared and worry about the risk of sun-burns because, dun dun dun… No sunscreen is available!
I quickly decided that was not going to happen this year! I purchased enough bottles so that we could have one for home, my purse, our field trip bag, as well as an extra! This is working out perfectly. We currently use 2 brands of sunscreen in our home – Babyganics & Young Living.
We have used the Babyganics sunscreen from Target for many years – absolutely love this stuff! It rubs in really well and lasts for hours. Never have I had a kid burn while using this sunscreen. Young Living Mineral Sunscreen Lotion is a newer addition to our home. This is the bottle I chose to keep in my purse for emergency usage, and I look forward to trying it out this year!
Remember the creek story? So, that totally inspired the water shoes making this list as well! When your kids decide to explore the creek with friends, their shoes get wet… very wet! Yes, even their brand new expensive ones! While I was incredibly happy my children spent the day off screens and exploring with friends, I wasn’t exactly thrilled about the ruined shoes. I immediately went home and ordered my kids some water shoes to keep in the car. Best summer investment ever!
For my youngest, I opted to get her these great land and water shoes! These are awesome because she can actually wear them all the time if she wants! Boom! Play shoes and water shoes all in one! My boys got some high quality Champion water shoes which also work perfectly for the occasional creek exploration.
Ok, this is probably already something most moms keep on hand anyway. Germs are literally everywhere. However, the option to always wash our hands might not be. Unfortunately, not all hand sanitizers are created equal though. Most are alcohol based and filled with synthetic or harmful ingredients. That’s why our family strictly uses Thieves Waterless Hand Purifier. I can’t stress this enough, good quality hand sanitizer is super important – not only for summer time, but year round!
I can’t stress this enough. Good quality, food safe, reusable water bottles are so essential for summer travels and outings! While it may be super convenient to grab a throwaway one, reusable is both better for you and the environment! I’m currently in the process of trying to weed out all our toxic plastic water bottles and replacing them with food grade stainless steel products. My newest found love is this beauty from the Enviro line. The best part? I can even add a drop or two of my essential oils to my water if I need a little pick me up (Grapefruit EO is my go to for this, see my post about Grapefruit EO here).
Ha! Again, I’m speaking to the non baby mommas here. Who would think a 13 year old or 11 year old might need a baby wipe? Not this mom for sure! However, my five year old is incredibly messy by nature, so thankfully baby wipes just never left my need list. I keep these super soft Babyganics Face, Hand & Baby Wipes in our field trip bag for every single outing. While you can definitely buy the super convenient travel packs, I prefer to buy the large and just carry a small amount with me in a reusable sandwich bag.
This might sound non-traditional, however books are one of the best things for a mom to toss into her travel bag. If you have older kids, encourage them to carry their own. While you carry for yourself and younger children. For our family, this has become complete normalcy. My oldest 2 children carry at least 2-3 books in their Sling-Back Bags every single time we leave the house. I typically carry one in my purse for myself, as well as a couple small readers for my 5 year old if the occasion calls for it (she’s not a strong reader just yet).
Life is full of waiting, this reason alone is why I encourage my children to bring books along whenever we leave the house. You just never know when something unexpected might happen, books make those moments so much easier! Not sure how to incorporate books and reading into your busy summer routine? I highly encourage you to check out the Summer Reading Challenge to help jump start a love of reading in your children! In need of some new titles for your children to enjoy? Head over to My UBAM for some fun ideas or contact me for a great summer stock up deal!
This is incredibly important, so take note! Most people don’t think about using bug spray unless they are taking a trek out into the deep dark woods. However, bugs are everywhere. Even in our backyards. Crazy right? While I do know bugs all serve some sort of purpose, there are some that can cause major harm to our sweet kiddos. The biggest one to worry about? Tics! Yes, I said it. Those creepy crawly bugs are everywhere this year and they carry some nasty diseases along with them. So anytime your children are going to be outside for an extended period of time, playing in grass or near trees, bug spray is certainly needed.
Our go to choices for bug protection are Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent & Citronella essential oil. We have been using Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent for the past couple years and let me tell you, this stuff works! We went on a family camping trip, using only this spray and we all left with zero insect bites! Absolutely love this stuff!
This day and age most everything can be purchased online or paid for with a credit card. However, having cash on hand for summer travel and outings is incredibly essential! Imagine you’re waiting in line to get a meal for your family at your local zoo. Then, when you near the front the employees announce that their system is down and they are only taking cash. You quickly step out of line knowing you only have a credit or debit card in your wallet, and your children begin complaining of extreme hunger pains. Unfortunately I didn’t have to imagine that horror, this actually happened to me once upon a time. Learn from my mistakes and always keep a little emergency cash on hand, even if you always intend on paying with a card.
A Great Bag
So you’ve got all the stuff you need for your outing or trip, now you need a good bag to store it all in. My absolute favorite bag for small outings or field trips is the Sling-Back Bag. If you’re interested in how we use and pack them, I highly encourage you to check out my Thirty-One product highlight on the Sling-Back Bag.
While the Sling-Back Bag is essential for day-trips, you might need something a little larger for trunk storage, or vacations. I highly recommend the Deluxe Utility Tote for trunk storage. We typically keep one of these in our trunk for grocery shopping. However, it also works so amazing for storing those extras like clothes, lunches, water shoes, etc. Want to learn a little more about the Deluxe Utility Tote? Take a look at my Thirty-One product highlight on the Deluxe Utility Tote. If you’re in need of a great Thirty-One product for toting your essentials around this summer, please contact me for a super summer deal!
Pack That Bag
Now that you’ve explored my top 10 list, I hope you are more than ready to get your bag purchased, packed, and organized! Being prepared for messes and the unexpected will ease so much unnecessary stress and help your summer to run more smoothly! Plus, taking a little time to prep your bag with these top 10 essentials will leave you with more time to enjoy those precious little people of yours. Let them run free with out the worry of bugs, messes, or mud covered clothes. Happy traveling momma!