10 Must Haves For Summer: #SummerPrep2015

Although we are just getting into spring good, My family is steady preparing for summer. We are gathering those must have items, packing our "outing" bag, as well as the car trip bag and beach bag. The kids' backpacks are packed. We're almost ready for a spontaneous road trip. There are a few items that the Mr and I are gathering that we know will make our summer much more enjoyable. These are the items I have decided are must haves for the summer.

This is the beginning of a series about prepping for the summer #SummerPrep2015. I encourage you to follow along as I share my tips for organizing the kids, the car, your calendar, and everything in between. I even have a couple of craft ideas to share with you that will make your life much simpler. This series will span over the next month and focus on keeping your family safe, healthy, entertained, and organized through the chaos of summer. I will cover working at home with spunky kids, vacation, road trips, picnics, and even errand days. I think you will really enjoy it and be able to use my tips. 

Here are my 10 Must Haves for Summer: 

1. Waterbean When we wnt on vacation last summer, I made a huge mistake. I forgot to get bottled water before we left. That may not seem like such a big deal, but when you have a baby still on formula and a preschooler that loves water, it is a big deal. I kept having to go to the convenience store to get bottled water, since we couldn't use tap water (something you are not supposed to do while away from home). It ended up costing us more money this way and I was determined to never have that problem again. Well, I stumbled across Waterbean and fell in love. Now, I can just fill up our regular water bottle, pop this amazing purifier in it, shake and have fresh water for the kiddos without having to buy bottled. Save money and the environment. This does not purify "dirty" water- it removes impurities, minerals, and suck from the tap water. 

2. An Amazing Bag  I'm not going to tell you which bag to buy, as that is a personal choice. In fact, I'm still trying to find the right bag. I like to carry a big bag, with a smaller purse in side of it. I put the kids stuff in the big one (snacks, change of clothes, extra entertainment, neccesities, etc) and throw my small purse in on top. I just want to urge you to find that perfect bag for you and your family. It could be a simple canvas tote, or a bag with lots of pockets and features. The right bag will make all the difference in staying organized. 

3. Dry Bag Do you spend a good bit of time near the lake, ocean, river, or pool? We do, so a dry bag is a must. I can put our phones and other electronics (you know we have a lot) in it and not have to worry about the kids splashing or accidentally knocking it in the water. It is also great to keep dry towels and clothes in, as well as car keys and other valuables. We love this 5L bag from Skorch

4. Frogglez *I received this product to review, all opinions are my ownWith Tbomb getting more comfortable in the water, we have added to his pool collection. We switched him from a life jacket to water wings and floats, he even has flippers and goggles. However, even though he loved not getting water in his eyes, he wouldn't wear them for long. I can't blame him- I can't wear goggles- they get tangled in my hair. Enter- Frogglez. They are neoprene, which is comfortable. They don't get tangled in hair, and are adjustable for any size head. In fact, you can even wear the strap with just about any other goggles. How awesome is that?!

5. Balloon Ball Tbomb and kodabug both got these balloon balls in their easter baskets. I thought they were a cool novelty, but didn't realize just how cool There is fabric in the shape of a ball, you put a balloon inside of it, blow it up, and tie it off. You can even add water or sand to the balloon to make it heaver. ( I reccommend water). No more busted balls because the dogs thought it was cool. No more being at the park with no ball to play with. What did I do? I put them in the kids' backpacks. It never fails- if we are outside, Tbomb wants to play with a ball and Kodabug wants what Tbomb has. Never be caught without a ball again. Her is one similar to what I got the kids at Dollar Tree. BearPawCreek

6. Mosquito Bands *I received a product to review. All opinions are my own.* We spend a lot of time outside. Do you know what South Carolina Summers mean? Bugs- especially mosquitos, and lots of them. We don't like using sprays on the kids, and are cautious of products made with essential oils. So, we seek out things that deter bugs without putting chemicals on their skin. We keep a supply of these repellent bracelets. What I love about them is they work for a certain distance radius (depending on the brand) So, I can wear on and it works for Kodabug too. Tbomb can wear one on his ankle and they are both safe from itchy bites. 

7. Food Squeeze Pouches Even though neither of our kids eat baby food anymore, these reusable food pouches are a must in our family. Whether we are out for errands, having a picnic, or taking a car trip, we can have healthy snacks and meals for the kids witout aas much mess. I just get them different kinds of applesauce to fill. It's healthy, mess free, and much cheaper than buing the already filled packs. 

8. Play Packs These little puches can be bought for just $1 at Walmart, Dollar Tree, and similar stores. They contain a coloring book, crayons, and stickers. They also make a $5 pack that has a bigger coloring book, more stencils and crayons, felt pages, and stencils. I get the $5 packs for major things (like when Kodabug had to go to the cardiologist and I needed Tbomb entertained) and keep a couple $1 packs for restaraunts, rewards, and when we are somewhere extra long. 

9. Neutrogena Cool Dry This stuff is amazing. I keep it in the bag I take everywhere (aka "outing" bag) so that I have it whether we are roadtripping, at the lake, at home, or camping. It is SPF 70, non-sticky, made with helioplex technology, and helps sweat evaporate, but keeps the protection in place. We have it in a spray, making it so much easier to keep the kids protected. 

10. Sunglasses for the family As long as they have sun protection, the brand doesn't really matter, but I suggest you make sure the whole family is outfitted in good sunglasses. Eye protection is very important and this is the best time to check out your family's current sunglass situation. 

I hope you enjoyed my list- what would you add to it? 

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