Wednesday, 1 July 2015

What to Pack: Fireworks and Big Summer Events

Ah, the return of summer! These few short months are filled with all sorts of activities that you can only really do when the weather is nice. Beach days, camping, BBQing, and those fantastic family events like fairs and street festivals! As great as these parties can be, they really do need a little advanced preparation, especially with little ones in tow. Will you plan a picnic or grab food there? Do you need your swim suits, towels, or blankets? How late does the event run, and will you have space for diaper changes or pottying? Let us help you plan ahead so that your local shindig goes off without a hitch!

Pack for your environment

Whether its fireworks at the community centre or camping in the conservation area, you may not have the comforts of home at your disposal. Plan ahead of time to ensure the proximity of necessities such as washrooms, water sources, shady rest spots, and parking. Err on the side of caution and pack a few supplies you wouldn't want to be without:
  • Hand sanitizer and emergency “pit stop” supplies (diapers, wipes, toilet paper) 
  • A few portable snacks such as apples, bananas, granola bars, or crackers 
  • Equipment for a change in weather such as a blanket, jackets, or an umbrella 

Pack for your time frame

Celebrations that can go all day might mean your family routine gets thrown off schedule. Waking up early might mean the parents need an extra coffee, and the kids need a spot for a nap! Will you need to prepare bottles, or make accommodations to breastfeed? Will you need to reapply your sun block or bug spray? Don’t forget:
  • A travel play pen, picnic blanket, or other down time things you need to rest little legs 
  • Fresh water, a thermos of cold milk, or whatever feeding supplies you might need 
  • Sun glasses, hats, sun screen, and other hot weather protection 

Pack for your audience

As interesting as you think the petting zoo might be, or how much you loved carnival rides as a kid, your offspring may vehemently disagree. Having a few extra dollars, some back up entertainment, or even an escape plan might save everyone a little aggravation! Try: 

  • Beach toys, bubbles, and playing cards or other travel games 
  • A map of the area or some notes on other local attractions 
  • Earmuffs like these or other sound protection for fireworks and loud music 

Big summer events are so much fun, but they can be stressful too. Consider packing a small first aid kit with bandages, antibiotic ointment, and pain reliever. Based on your family's needs, you might also want medication for an allergic reaction, or upset stomach. Remember to talk to your family about a game plan in case someone gets lost. Have a meeting point, and consider an identification sticker or tag for older kids. Planning for the unpleasant stuff makes it no big deal, and you can get back to the good stuff a lot sooner!

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