Bring on The Sun, Summer Fun Awaits!

Summer fun is right around the corner. The sun is out, the temperatures are finally where they should be. It’s time to get out and enjoy the warmer months. I am a July baby. So is my oldest daughter. We seem to come by our love of summer naturally. It’s a happy, calm sort of season that breeds a feeling of contentment.

We love to take road trips and hit the beach when the weather turns warm. And we have a pool, so as soon as the pool opens we are in summer fun mode. Pool parties, beaches and family travel are some of my favourite things. But every single year when the pool opens and sun boosts the temperatures outside I throw together an inventory of what we need and what we have for summer healthy living essentials.


It’s easier to have fun when you’re prepared. I’ve put together a list of my family’s summer fun essentials for enjoying summer break. My pool list is simple: Towels, Sunscreen, Swim Goggles, reusable filled plastic water bottles, hats and snacks. You can add shade to that one too. If kids are out in the pool then I want to be sure there’s a shaded spot for them to relax on the patio when they get out of the water. Breaks from sun are important too, as much as we love those gorgeous Blue Sky days.

Summer Fun on the Road and in the Sun

We are in our pool as often as possible. Sometimes all weekend long. But, as a travel writer sometimes called away quickly to go visit a new resort, feature, destination or camp I also need a road and day trip summer fun kit. When it comes to road trips, it pays to be prepared. Trips and excursions are much less fun when you don’t have everything you need. Instead of enjoying your time together, you’re frantically trying to make do with what you have, or racing last minute to the store, instead of relaxing and enjoying yourself.

Here’s a list of my essentials that help maximize our fun in the summer, and keep the worries to a minimum.

Hanging out with my niece and nephew at a Guelph Park recently. And bottom right is Ainsley showing off. LOL.

A Big Cooler

When you’re at the beach or on the road, you need snacks and drinks. After all, beach snack stations are usually overpriced, and no true road tripper likes to make unnecessary pit stops. That’s why we always bring a big cooler to hold all of our cold drinks and sandwiches.

A Big Reusable Bag

I also bring along a big bag to hold all of our non-refrigerated snacks like chips, granola bars, trail mix, and the like while we’rea the beach or on a road trip.

Pool Toys

In addition to hitting the beach, my family enjoys pool parties at our house. Swimming on its own is fun, but when you throw pool toys into the mix, things are even better. I like to keep a variety of pool toys and floats on hand for lounging, or a fun water-based game. Frankly I find water toys and floats keep the kids in the pool swimming longer and that’s a great goal for any age. Swimming is a great healthy activity for families.

Swim Goggles

Swim goggles are essential for summer fun. Keep the chlorine or bromine, ocean water or lake water out of your eyes. My kids love diving and pool life is more fun when you can open your eyes beneath the water and make funny faces at each other or create some underwater games. We do this a lot. Actually we’ve already been through one pair of swim goggles this season and summer has barely started. Must buy more. When you have a pool you are a magnet for the kid’s friends and that’s awesome. I love that everyone knows they can come over and swim when an adult is present at our house. But somebody ALWAYS forgets goggles. Extras are crucial.

Extra Towels

Whether you’re at the beach or hosting a pool party, one thing is always the same – at least one person will forget their towel. NEVER fails. Having extra towels on hand is always a good idea. We usually have a basket full of things we keep near our pool for guests and family too. Towels, goggles, nose plugs and snacks are pool party necessities.

Emergency Kit

When you’re road tripping, it pays to have an emergency kit with you for any eventuality. A good emergency kit will include a multi-tool that includes a seatbelt cutter and glass-breaker, jumper cables, bottled water, and thermal blankets.



Summer fun isn’t fun when you, or your kids, get a sunburn. Sunburns are painful and also dangerous. They hurt and they drastically increase your risk of developing skin cancer. That’s why I always keep Banana Boat Simply Protect Kids on hand whether we’re road tripping, going to the beach, swimming, heading to camp, gardening, hanging out riding bikes or walking.

As a mom, it’s important to me to protect my kids – and their friends if we’re hosting a pool party – from the harmful effects of the sun’s rays. Banana Boat Simply Protect Kids is perfect for that because it goes on easily, and it’s safer for their skin. That makes me happy. It uses 25% fewer ingredients, eliminating unnecessary, toxic ingredients like parabens, oxybenzone, and added fragrances and oils. What’s more, both their lotion and spray varieties are tear-free, making them perfect for kids.

Preparing the yard for summer fun. Doing some shopping at the garden centre.

Banana Boat Simply Protect Kids is mild and gentle enough for even the most sensitive skin. My kids might be a bit older now but they are still sensitive. They have their own opinions on the types of sunscreens we buy and will tell me if something feels too oily or has a strong scent. In fact, from the time my oldest was small she’d opt for Banana Boat products. She preferred the lightweight feel.

Oh and of course when you swim for hours on end often a huge factor is the length of time the sunscreen is water resistant. Simply Protect Kids Lotion has a water resistant formula of up to 80 minutes. PERFECT for days when we are having too much fun perfecting front flips.

Check out Banana Boat Simply Protect Kids Lotion and Simply Protect Sport Spray and see for yourself how great they are. They are a key part of my summer fun essentials, and I think they will be for yours, too.

This post was sponsored by Banana Boat. My opinion is all my own and it is also truthful. 

Mom of two beautiful active girls, traveller, fitness junkie, social media consultant, and keeper of the sanity.


  • Jenna em

    You’ve put together a great list–I love the pool toy suggestion! We go to a cottage and the pool toys make a fun day that much better. It’s true that sunblock is an essential part of a good summer. My skin is fair, and I can’t last 5 minutes without some protection.

  • Sandy

    “25% fewer ingredients, eliminating unnecessary, toxic ingredients like parabens, oxybenzone, and added fragrances and oils.” I love this! The less unnecessary ingredients the better IMO. When I think back to what we used to use on our skin when we were kids, I shudder!

  • Aeryn Lynne

    Awesome list for summer fun! And YAY for safer skin with a sunscreen that still works the same without the toxic chemicals we want to see less of. 🙂 We’ve *just* run out on our last bottle of sunscreen, I’m going to keep an eye out for this Simply Protect Banana Boat version.

    So looking forward to when I can pack up the car in the morning and take the kids out to a local pool during the summer!

  • Olivia

    Great tips – you hit on all our essentials too. I keep a bottle of sunscreen in the car for those spur of the moment playground trips and picnics.