In honor of my kids finally being done with school and on summer break, I wanted to share with you some of our favorite summer stuff we love, the things that are bringing us joy, or making our lives a little bit easier, this summer!
I’d love to hear from you too, share your family’s summer essentials with us!
As we go through our daily routine:
Thoughts To Make Your Heart Sing by Sally Lloyd-Jones
I got this devotional book after searching around on Amazon for a devotional book for kids. We absolutely love the Jesus Bible Storybook, so I figured we’d love this too, and I was right.
We’ve been reading this all week in the mornings, and the kids look forward to it so much, they want to sneak and read ahead each day! I would recommend this for a little bit older kids. My 7 year-old and almost 6 your-old really like it, but the 3 year-old doesn’t really grasp it yet.
This is the music we listen to in the morning while making breakfast, eating, and doing our morning chores. It helps to keep us in a good mood and I love that my kiddos are learning Scripture while listening to music. We listen to Seeds Family Worship and my Grace and Worship Playlist on Spotify, and Hymns on iTunes.
Blair got this book for her birthday to help her with beginning writing skills this summer. All of the kids have been fighting over using it though, so maybe I need to get another copy!
I asked my son to do two pages of this book before having screen time the other day while I was putting the littlest down for a nap. When I checked on him, he was so excited to show me that he had finished 6+ pages and hadn’t even turned on a show. That’s a win in my book!
My daughter taught her herself how to write in cursive using a few different workbooks, but this is one of our favorites because she loves learning new jokes and riddles while also practicing her handwriting!
If you haven’t listened to these yet with your kiddos, you absolutely need to! You can listen free with the Sparkle Stories podcast, that’s what we do right now. My kids love to listen to stories before bed, or during quiet time, and I’m really looking forward to using them on our road trips this summer!
Image: emilymcclements on Instagram
The great outdoors:
This is the first year I’ve gotten my kids Keen sandals and I am hooked! They are the perfect summer shoe for active kids – breathable, but their toes are protected, and give great support for their feet. I was able to buy ours used off a BST group on Facebook and on eBay.
Blair got this bike for her birthday and I am so happy with it. It’s super cute and great quality! We’ve had fun watching her learn how to ride it. I’ve heard nothing but good things about using a balance bike for your younger kids to help them more easily transition to a regular bike without training wheels. We’ll see how it goes!
I got this hat last summer for our youngest, and got my older two kids a different brand of hat, but that was a mistake! This is the best sun hat we’ve found for the kiddos to wear at the beach or the pool and I’m getting my big kids some for this summer!
The hat is made of swimsuit material, so it’s foldable and flexible, it doesn’t take up much space in your beach bag, and it can get wet and dries easily. The strap helps the hat to stay on without being annoying, and the brim provides enough shade for their faces and necks.
If you’re going to be spending any time in or around the water at the beach or pool this summer, this floatie is a must-have! It keeps kids upright and above the water. It helps those who are comfortable in the water to swim on their own without you having to hold them the whole time. My youngest daughter loves this floatie and I wish I would have had them for my older kids when they were little!
We try to take a common sense approach to sun exposure in the summer, but there are times when we need to use sunscreen, and this is our top choice right now. We use this sunscreen when we are going to be out in the sun for a long time and it has worked great for us. We apply it before going to the beach or pool because it is a little hard to spread on. It scores a 1 on the EWG sunscreen database.
If you love spending time on sandy beaches but haven’t tried this trick yet, you have to the next time you’re at the beach! Sprinkle a little bit of baby powder onto your kiddos legs, feet, arms, backs, bums – wherever they have sand stuck to them. Usually sand is so annoying to brush off, especially if it’s still a little bit wet. But with baby powder, the sand easily brushes right off!
I can’t believe I grew up on the beaches of Lake Michigan and have spent countless hours at the beach with my kiddos and never knew this trick until last summer! Thank you Pinterest!
Photo credit: banded2gether on instagram
And a few things just for mama:
This is my favorite face lotion right now. It is light and non-greasy; I use it both in the morning and at night before bed. It makes my skin soft and silky and I think it’s also helped to reduce some of my fine lines. I also appreciate that it is a good size bottle that lasts long time, for a very reasonable price, which is often hard to find when looking for organic and natural face lotions!
So, here’s my makeup tip for the summer time, I mix a small amount of this with a small amount of the Everyday Coconut face lotion and use it as a base. It leaves just a slight shimmer that helps my skin to look smooth, light, and bright. And because I use such a small amount, I’ve been using the same bottle of this for over six months!
These headbands are a must-have for busy mamas who want to keep their hair off their face while still looking cute and stylish! I have four of these headbands and am considering getting more because they have so many cute styles and I wear them several times a week, especially now that I am growing my bangs out!
I wear these on days when I’m pulling my hair back in a pony or a bun to just add alittle cuteness. I’ll also wear them with my hair down as a headband to hold my hair and bangs off of my face. And I wear them while I’m running because they help to keep my hair in place and the sweat off of my face. They stay in place amazingly well, they don’t slip or slide out of place. I love these headbands and I love that each headband provides 3 meals for a child in Uganda through Amazima Ministries!
I love the look of painted toenails and fingernail in the summertime and I appreciate that I can get this brand of nail polish either on Amazon or at Whole Foods and that it’s free of formaldehyde, toluene, camphor and butyl phthalate.
I’m looking for some recommendations:
I’m also still looking for a few recommendations on products and would love to hear your favorites.
- Bug Spray – I need to find a natural bug spray that works, the one I got last year was less than stellar.
- Spray Sunscreen – I’d like to find a safe and natural spray sunscreen to use for reapplying when we’re at the beach. Do you use one that you like?
- Popsicle mold – I’m still on the lookout for the best popsicle mold so we can make homemade popsicles. Have one you love? Share it with us in the comments!
I hope you are ready to have a fabulous summer!!
*Disclosure: There are affiliate links in this post. If you make a purchase through one of these links I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for supporting Live Renewed!