The summer holidays are well under way and if you’re like me, you’ve probably figured out by now that parenting gets easier when you leave the house. I like to try and plan a few outings a week for the kids to help keep them entertained.
There’s no way I can afford to pay for daily outings, so we try and milk as many of the local free activities as possible. I’m a big fan of a packing a picnic and heading out for a few hours of fun.
Because parenting out of the house generally means you spend a lot of time out in the open where other people can see you, I try my best to look at least a tiny bit presentable. I’ve picked up a few tips along the way for keeping cool and still looking good while I take the children out for the day.
A trip to the beach
I’m lucky enough to live down the road from Cleethorpes beach. I grew up a few streets away from the seafront and I love going back there. It’s one of those days out where you can spend nothing, or spend a fortune, depending on what you choose to do.
If I load up on picnic food, park at my mum’s house and herd my kids down to the non-amusement end of the beach then we can spend nothing. For this type of outing, I’d go for a practical style. I’d be expecting to be doing some walking and running, so trainers are a must – even if I kick them off when I get to the sand.
My children are ten and four, so although the 10-year-old is pretty trustworthy, the 4-year-old needs to be grabbed and steered quite a lot. This means I need my hands free, so I’d put everything I need in a trendy backpack to free me up for grabbing the little one.
There’s no room for floaty dresses or cute skirts, so I’d wear shorts or cropped jeans and a loose-fitting vest for a day at the beach.
A visit to the woods
Our local woods is also popular place with my kids. There is a wooded area to walk around, a large field and a play park at our local woods meaning there is plenty for the kids to do.
Practical fashion is another must for me, so it’s skinny jeans and a man’s shirt over a vest top for me. There tends to be mosquitos and midges in the woods so I like to stay semi-covered to protect myself from bites. Again, a backpack is a must because you can carry plenty but keep your hands free.
I like to experiment with different up-dos because I have a lot of hair and it doesn’t stay in a mum-bun very well. I’m too hot in the summer to wear my hair down, so I try to pick a style that looks effortlessly cool. My favourite style is a side braid because it keeps the heat of my hair away from my face and also makes me look like I’ve made an effort (when I secretly haven’t).
If I can get away with it, I like to wear a maxi dress for as many outings as I can, because they instantly make you look glamorous with no added effort. Things like family barbecues, or beach visits that don’t involve much walking are perfect places for a maxi dress. If you’ve got slightly older children, who don’t need much rescuing, you could even get away with one at the park!
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