A few weeks ago, I rushed the kids into the car and quickly dashed off to summer camp; I then made my way to base for a run with Stroller Warriors. It was a hot and humid run that left me soaked and feeling as if I had just completed laps in a pool. I was anxious to towel off and change my clothing. I opened my passenger seat…no gym bag! In my haste to get the kids to camp in time I forgot to grab my bag of post-run items. I immediately checked the trunk and voila…my bag of extra items for the win! I had a towel to dry off and a clean set of clothes for post-run story time.
It took a lot of trial and error, and changes with the ages of the kids and/or seasons, but as of right now below is a list of items I keep handy in my car:
- An easy change of clothing for each family member. I say easy because I like to limit the number of clothing items I need. I opt for swim trunks or athletic shorts with built in lining over bottoms and undergarments, but I add a sports bra for myself!
- A fleece for each family member. There have been many times when I have changed the kids, but a shirt gets soaked moments later or one child gets chilly in the car with air-conditioning, so the fleece keeps them warm or can work as a back-up shirt! One rule- I place the fleece back into the trunk when we arrive home…unless it needs a wash.
- Towels. 3 of them!
- Socks for each family member. Sometimes between running errands we take a spontaneous trip to the bowling alley or trampoline park to beat the heat!
- A blanket, which is always there for a picnic, outdoor activity (it proved useful for Freedom Fest this year), or groundwork at Stroller Warriors when I forget my yoga mat.
- Flip-flops for all! My kids always get their shoes wet, or I often forget a change of shoes for after a summer trail race— no one likes wearing soggy sneakers. I have my kids kick the flipflops to the floor of the car when we get home to ensure each pair stays in the car. The “car flipflops,” as my kids dubbed them, have also came in handy in the winter!
- A bottle of sunblock and bug spray in case I leave home without either, or run out! The mosquitos and noseeum bugs swarming around Charleston in the summer months will rock your world…and not in a happy way! My extra bug spray has been a saving grace! I keep the extra bug spray and sunblock at the bottom of my emergency bag to avoid direct sunlight and overheating.
- A sleeve a Nuun tablets for when I need a bit more than water to hydrate.