Mom’s Summer Survival Kit

I’m now like a whole five minutes into this summer vacation thing and I know one thing for sure.

School is amazing.

This is my first time doing a summer vacation as a mom. (My oldest just finished 3K.)

Now, I’m looking at THREE MONTHS that need to be filled and the Type-A mom in me is freaking the heck out. HOW ON EARTH DID MY SON’S TEACHER ENTERTAIN TWELVE KIDS EVERY DAY WITHOUT SCREENS????

Rather than panic, I decided to plan. To prepare. I’ve put together my summer survival kit, and I’m sharing it with you.

summer survival kit

In my purse:

A planner. I sit down with my son and the forecast at the beginning of the week and I plan something for us to do every day. Most things are small. Monday, we are going grocery shopping and stopping for a treat if we can manage to avoid a complete meltdown in the middle of the store. One day we might spend an hour at the park. But every day, without fail, we will have SOMEWHERE to go.

A wallet. In the wallet are my most prized summer possessions: membership cards. Thankfully, our family is big on gifting experiences rather than actual items, so we have memberships to the Milwaukee Public Museum, Betty Brinn, The Zoo, and the Audubon. If my kids can’t be happy going to one of those places or somewhere free, then clearly I’ve failed as a parent and they are spoiled brats.

Diapers, wipes, mini first aid kit. I’m gonna need them. Trust.

My Milwaukee County Library Card App. I download audiobooks to keep the kids happy while we’re in the car traveling to our next adventure.

Bookmarked on my phone:

I’ve made a small folder of these links so I can pull up a backup plan anytime.

1.       Summer Bucket List

2.       Pools and Splash Pads Guide

3.       Favorite Parks

4.       Milwaukee County Parks list 

5.       Kid Friendly places to eat

6.       Indoor play guide

7.      Our Favorite Milwaukee Festivals

In my car:

Snacks and juice boxes. I’ll admit, getting my kids out the door AND remembering to bring a snack is sometimes one step too much for me. Having a ready supply in the car (thank you, Costco!) makes it so I can load them and go.

Blankets and Towels. You never know when the mood will strike for a picnic. Or when a playground slide needs to be dried off. These end up being used once a week at least.

Spare clothes. Summer is messy (as it should be). Keeping an extra set of clothes is just a good idea.

Beach/pool bag. Packed and ready to go at a moment’s notice.

Lightweight Stroller. An umbrella stroller is small enough to not take up too much room in the trunk, but comes in handy if my (almost) two year old gets sick of walking or we end up somewhere around nap time.

In my garage/backyard:

Water balloons. My 3-year-old has a heck of an arm, so watch out if you’re here for a battle!

Sprinkler and Kiddie Pool. Just remember to keep your eyes on the kids at all times. Water safety is SO important!


Balls and soccer net

Bubbles — good for at least 20 minutes of quiet time.

Sidewalk chalk — the kid loves art. I love not having to clean up the mess.

I am determined to make this a fun and memorable summer. Even if I have to plan like a mother to make that happen.

What’s in YOUR summer survival kit? Sound off in the comments.


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