I’m sure lots of you will be planning and preparing for summer holidays and I always find that the majority of my time is focussed on ensuring we have the kids covered. So I thought I’d highlight my must haves to help you prepare for your own adventures.
For the plane
I’d been really worried about the plane, I’d been really worried about how the kids would cope and listened to some horror stories of parents never wanting to go on trips again following a flight. I have to say, the kids were amazing on the flight, they enjoyed it, they slept, they played and were laughing. Of course there was some crying, some frustration but I’d say that I get a bit frustrated on a long haul flight so all in all was a great flight.
We packed a range of toys and things to keep them entertained but there are my top 3 things that I won’t go without from now on:
Doodle book: these are a firm favourite of my kids and are played with all the time. If you don’t have one yet, buy one. Great, mess free art.
Yoto Headphones and Yoto Mini player: the headphones are specifically made for little ears and they have the ability to daisy chain so two littles ones can listen to the same thing at the same time. Also perfect as they work with the aeroplane tvs, so meant the kids could watch their favourite film and be comfortable at the same time.
Snacks: just in case there’s not a snack at the right time, vital!! You can’t go anywhere without snacks!
For the beach
Snooze shade: this has been a staple for us since Rishi was little. While we have a routine, we work around it and we didn’t want the naps to stop plans, so this helps us have naps on the move and allows a comfortable sleep in the pram. A great addition and the traditional snooze shade folds down so it takes up no luggage space.
Sandpal: I wanted to take some sand toys and although there’s nothing wrong with the traditional bucket and spade, we wanted to try out the sandpal as our boys love building. Easy to pack and easy to use this was a lot of fun on the beach. It creates a way to make those magical castles and patterns on a different scale.
Of course, if you’re looks for the traditional bucket and spade, you can’t beat the scrunch bucket. Great for rolling up in your bag.
Another must have for us is our slipfree shoes. I have them for me and the children and we wear them in the pool, sea and on the beach. Light to pack and easy to wear, perfect solution for ensuring your feet are protected and there are no slips or falls!
For the sun
Quite traditionally, I was so focussed on the boys sun cream that I forgot about my own but this sun cream applicator made it so much easier and quicker to do it for the boys. I love that you can buy replacement sponges and you can use any creams, so will be good for future years.
When I returned from my trip I heard about UV stickers (from Boots) which shows when it’s time to reapply your sunscreen. They would be a great reminder for me and my kids!
For the bugs
We were heading to St Lucia and we knew we would be taking the boys hiking and in the rain forest so I was keen to take some child friendly mosquito goodies. I’m a huge fan of JoJo Mamans and they have some great mosquito products.
Mosquito Patches: These mosquito patches were great, you simply squeeze and stick on to clothing. They stuck to all kinds of material including swimwear so they were perfect. They also smelt delicious.
Mosquito Repellant: This repellant from vie was great, super gentle on the skin and the boys seemed to be pretty well protected against the bugs! This repellant can be used by the whole family if you wish.
After bite care: That’s not to say the boys were not bitten, they were and we used the after bite care in the same range from vie. I used this on holiday, very soothing and did the trick for me and the boys.
For any restaurants, queues or waiting:
Maybe it’s just me, but if I know we are heading for a restaurant or we will be something waiting while the boys can’t run around or play, I always try to take a few bits to entertain them. For the holidays this included books, crayons, sticker sheets from Baker Ross, colouring, magnets, playdoh and the below.
Magic painting: The doodle books are fantastic but these magic painting books from Floss and Rock are amazing. We purchased the construction and the space set for our trip. My eldest was obsessed by them, he would happily sit waiting for dinner and seeing what he could make with water and my youngest was amazed (and I think a little confused as to what was happening). For me, I love that they are something a bit different, small (but not too small) and they are very portable.
Stickers: I appreciate this is not a new thing but if you have train obsessed or transport obsessed little ones, you have to get this, Build your own train. The kids loved it, little bit of reading and they loved learning about all of the different trains. This My first train sticker book was perfect for my 2 1/2year old, he could happily pull off stickers without ripping and he was relatively happy at working through it on his own. Brilliant purchases and kept them very happy!
Hope this helps with your packing, good luck and have fun!