With the summer holidays in full flow and the mass exodus from the classroom many of you lucky buggers will be jetting of to warmer climes for your hols – something we did back in the half term (you can read all about it here and even see the vid here!). At the time we were rather smug at the idea of going away before everyone else, with the optimism of summer laying before us – now we just watch on with green eyes as you holiday spam my insta-feed from gorgeous destinations. But hopefully our premature jaunt to the sun has filled me with holiday wisdom to share – to bring you the bits I couldn’t have gone that week without (and at the bottom, the bits I want to kick to bloofy Jupiter). Ok, well I probably could’ve survived a Greek, all-inclusive resort without these items, but it would have been a lot more stressful (yes, even more stressful than travelling as a family of 7!).
Not sure about your sprogs, but ever since that time I accidentally sprayed the lotion in Hugo’s eyes (he bloody opened them mid-spritz!) they don’t seem to completely trust me when it comes to creaming them up. Cue, Green People Organic Sun Creams; amidst the chaos of the e-numbered, fluoro coloured family pool, once you’ve doused yourself in this creamy wonder of sun protection, you can shut your eyes for a mo (no longer, otherwise a small person may drown!) and feel like you’re in a spa – the smell is divine!
The grown ups had the factor 15 & 30, the kids had the factor 30 (see why there’s no factor 50 HERE), then we all used the after sun. Most the boys have suffered in the past with sensitive skin, heat rashes and even pussy blisters on their ears when exposed to the sun (nice, right?!) – but thanks to the natural ingredients and the fact they’re free from harsh chemicals and artificial fragrances, my little cherubs were safe from the sun and didn’t turn into red, bumpy gremlins come sun down.
You know the huge squares of floaty fabric – yep? Lifesaver! Casper’s used to snuggling into his acrylic/wool blanket at home, needless to say 30 degree heat was not conducive to hugging man-made, sweat inducing fibres – so he used this as his blanky; we used it as a sun shield on his buggy; as a change mat on the beach; we made a makeshift sling when he was being clingy, the big boys made a camp on the balcony with it and even as a chew for Cas’ sore gums.
Travelling with boys? Inflatables! The infinite uses the boys came up with for a lilo know no bounds! Think lilos, beach balls, flamingos and dinghies. And this Phlat Ball (literally, a fold flat ball!) is perfect for packing the boys must have item – a ball! Even better – befriend a lifeguard and gift them all when you leave for the next influx of guests.
Sun Hat – That Stays On!
I was so lucky to find out about the amazing Little Hotdog Watson (award winning mama brand) the same week we travelled. I couldn’t help but nab one of their super cool monochrome panda hats for Casper with all it’s flaps and peaks to keep him protected, plus it’s UPF50+ and has insect repellent built in for up to 30 washes!! He actually kept it on too!
I packed these by the bucket load – as Casper’s first trip abroad and being an uber fussy eater at least I knew he’d munch on a banana and date bar without hesitation.
The Useless – Never Made It Home Items
- Trunki’s – sorry, I can’t stand the cheery little get-in-the-way-at-every-turn buggers which don’t actually hold enough to be useful!
- Sun Parasol for the buggy – if a slight gust got underneath that thing it would run the risk of blinding a toddler or flying off down the beach. Just use aforementioned big mussy or sun hat for shade when strolling.
- Travel pillows – if a journey with kids is long enough to consider one of these – it’s too long – don’t go!