A couple of years ago, my husband traveled a ton and I was in charge of bringing all three kids out in 100-degree weather for soccer games on Saturday mornings. That first year, it was all about the snacks. I think I ended up feeding all the younger siblings at the same time as my own kids, so I brought lots of snacks, chairs, the soccer stuff and all three kids in the wagon after parking a third of a mile away.
As the kids have gotten older and I’ve gotten more practice, we have streamlined these outings to make them much easier and more fun!
Dad is in charge of taking all three of our kids to soccer practice on his own this weekend, so I’m supplying him with everything he needs for a successful outing.
Keeping little ones busy in the hot sun all morning isn’t easy! Here’s what to stock up on to make sure you are set up for success.
First off, of course, each child should be dressed in their soccer uniform, socks, shinguards, cleats and bring their soccer ball.
It’s best to bring the wagon when all three kids will be playing all morning. It’s just so much easier to haul the stuff in a big wagon than on everybody’s shoulders.
Find a shady spot or bring your own shade. We have this cool pop-up tent like this one that is much easier for one person to set up than one of those big canopies that so many other families have.
Something to sit on. It can be a waterproof blanket or beach chairs, depending on what you want to haul around. We found these small beach chairs that are fantastic because they also fit inside our shady tent.
Lots of water and sunscreen. Not only do all the kids have their own insulated water bottles, but we also have a mini spray mister fan and an extra large insulated water jug for refills.
Don’t forget the snacks! Even though these kids are totally spoiled and get snacks at halftime and at the end of the game, they often aren’t extras for siblings. We make sure each kid has a snack or two as a spare - or some healthier options, too.
If I’m on my own, I make sure I’m near bathrooms, too. Chances are I may have to trek to the restroom with more than one kid and I want to make sure it’s not too far or I might have to carry the youngest in the heat! Ha!
Extra shoes. After a few hours, the kids are totally over wearing their cleats. They say they are tight? And those soccer socks are hot. I bring extra shoes for them to change into when the game is over.
Activity Kits. Unfortunately, my kids aren’t interested in cheering on their brother or sister for more than a few minutes and their attention span is shot. If there’s a friend there the kids may play near us in the dirt or with a ball, but often they are forced to sit and stay near us. I rotate our activity kit bags so there’s always something new and fresh.
Each activity kit contains:
Small bag for a small child to carry
Activity, game or sticker book
Small figures or game
Pliable or buildable material
I’ve found this combination holds their interest the longest. There is enough variety to have something for most moods and if there is a friend along and it’s not too hot, the kids will end up playing nearby anyway.
What do you bring to the soccer field?
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