Now that the weather is hot and humid, it’s time to head to the pool more often. However, being at the pool with little kids requires a lot of work and a lot of gear. And if you are a mom going alone? You must pack wisely whether you are going for an hour or all-day.
Essentials for a Day at the Pool with Kids
First and foremost, you need sunscreen. That’s a no-brainer. However, sometimes as a mom it’s harder to get sunscreen on your back, etc. If I plan ahead I put all of my sunscreen on at home before we leave as well as the kids. If we are going for a long day or I don’t have time to adequately lotion myself up, I’ve found that a nice swim shirt is the way to go. This year I splurged for one at Athleta and have had no regrets.
I also put all three kids in swim shirts. Again, less body parts to have to maintain the sunscreen. I found a surf suit for Charlotte this year at mini Boden and it is awesome. Long sleeve and capri yet she still stays cool enough in it. Everyone compliments it. While they were on sale I went ahead and ordered one for Henry for next summer.
And Henry still uses his puddle jumper. Lots of people are against flotation devices completely, but for my sanity, I have to use one. He is swimming just fine during swim lessons and when we remove them at the pool and practice with him. But as far as playing in the pool all afternoon…these give him some freedom because he cannot touch anywhere other than the baby pool. And I refuse to stay dungeoned in the baby pool area.
At our pool, there is a 2-ft section of water that is basically a square that connects to the larger pool. Moms get lucky when they can grab the chairs right next to that spot. At least, moms that recently graduated from the baby pool. Especially since kids are constantly running back and forth to “the designated spot” to grab drinks, toys, etc.
Toys? At the pool? Yes, the first thing I learned about going to the pool with kids is that they still need toys. HA! Pool toys are fun. Diving rings, goggles, mermaid Barbies, etc. Even a watering can and paint brush can keep a kid busy “painting” on deck. Hauling the toys and keeping everything else dry is not so fun. That is why most moms have a toy basket like the white one above…plastic and with holes in it. Very important so you can tip it and let all the water run out before you throw it in your car.
Our pool has a break every hour at the :45 til the top of the hour. Which means kids expect a snack every hour. Every mom needs a cooler for the pool. And every mom with young kids needs one on wheels (check TJMaxx – mine was $20-25). I count the number of breaks we will have and plan snacks accordingly. We are really lucky to be able to bring any food we want. My typical snacks are pretzels, cheese sticks, grapes, strawberries, frozen yogurt tubes, and PB&J sandwiches. I also pack one juice box for each kid to make sure they get really hydrated during one of the breaks. Otherwise, it’s water bottles if they are thirsty.
So those are my Top 5 Essentials for the Pool at this stage of my life:
Swim Shirts for all of us
- Puddle Jumper
- Plastic Pool Toy Basket & Toys
- Rolling Pool Cooler
- Lots of Healthy Snacks
I’d actually add FRIENDS as #6. If you can buddy-up and meet a friend at the pool, it will make everything easier!
What did I miss? What else is an essential for you?
I can’t wait until I can say a good book and/or magazine. But…not at that stage in my life yet. All eyes on the water for now!