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Summer is here and it is hot. I mean really hot! Here in West Michigan, the temperature has been in the 90s for the past few days. That means that our AC has been running almost non-stop and my kids are going stir-crazy. I have some summer essentials that I keep together for days when we need to head to the beach to cool down. These summer essentials are also great for heading out to a park or playground, as well.

Why Do I Need These Summer Essentials?

I was a girl scout. I really don’t think that has anything to do with the fact that I like to be organized (don’t look at my house at the moment) and prepared for anything. It is always nice to have items on hand “just-in-case”. In fact, because I have these essential items ready to go, I was ready when something just so happened to pop up last week.

My daughter had a field trip with our homeschool group to a local playground. This is a really nice playground that happens to be one of the safest in the area. That could be why it is also one of the busiest. I was sitting at a picnic table chatting when I heard a kid hit the pavement behind me. This little guy was just arriving with his family and he was so excited to play that he had slipped out of his shoe while running and tripped.

I was sitting at a picnic table chatting when I heard a kid hit the pavement behind me. This little guy was just arriving with his family and he was so excited to play that he had slipped out of his shoe while running and tripped. He was very upset and his mother was trying to comfort him while her husband took the rest of the kids to play.

Because I Was Prepared

This family wasn’t part of our group, but I immediately asked if I could help. I pulled out my first-aid kit and that little boy was soon heading for a slide with a band-aid on his knee.

A little while later, a girl that did happen to be with our group fell off of a bench. I once again reached for my first-aid kit and another band-aid was applied. This time to an elbow. If I hadn’t have been prepared and had my summer essentials with me, these kids would have been fine, eventually. But because I did have a first-aid kit handy, they were back to playing much sooner. Download your checklist above!

Summer Essentials

1. Brimmed hat

This is a must if you spend a lot of time in the sun tracking your kids. I think this one is pretty cute.

2. Sunglasses

Another way to keep the sun out of your eyes and your eyes on the kids.

3. Sundress

This is something you want handy to slip on over your bathing suit if you are going into a shop or restaurant. It is also great to have on hand if you get anything on the clothes you were already wearing.

4. Beach cover-up

It is always nice to have something to “cover-up” with when you need to grab something from the car or take a little one to the bathroom. I love this one.

5. Swimsuits

You know that a swimsuit is a necessity if you are going to the beach, but it could also be nice at the park, too. Several parks around my area have installed Splash Pads over the past few years. I have even been to a park without a splash pad and still got wet. Someone had brought water balloons. Also, more than one suit may be handy if you have a little one who is still spitting up after meals.

6. Sandals

I wear sandals in the summer just like I wear snow boots in the winter.

7. Flip-flops

I am never too far from a good pair of flip-flops. As long as the snow is gone, they are on my feet. These are my “go-to” flip-flops all summer long.

8. First-aid kit

If you need to know why this is on the list, check out my story above.

9. Sunscreen/sunblock

Getting burned is never any fun. My son, unfortunately, go my sunburn-prone skin, so we both have to be careful in the summer. This is the one I have in my bag right now!

10. After-sun lotion

Even if you use protection, a sunburn can still happen. Luckily, this is a thing.

11. Bug spray

You might not encounter many bugs at the beach during the day, but if you happen to hang out until dusk you will want this. I make sure to have some on hand all the time. Ticks are a problem in our area, even near the beaches.

12. Cash

You never know when you will need some change for a parking meterĀ or cash for a parking attendant. Some food trucks and stands still require cash, as well.

13. Beach toys

This is a must for the beach, but they can also be fun for playing at a park or playground. Just make sure you have them labeled so you can take home what is yours.

It is always better to be prepared. You just never know when or where something could happen. Being organized also means you can get out the door much faster. That means you can get to the “having fun” much sooner. Download your checklist above!

How did I do with my list? Is there anything I might have missed? Leave a comment below to let me know how I did or with any of your suggestions.

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