Summer sleepovers! Is there anything that kids love more? Keep your kids comfy and your life streamlined with a few of our favorite packing tips for summer sleepovers.
Unless your kid is going to a sleepover where there is a guest bed (and maybe even if they are), a children’s sleeping bag is a great idea. Chances are they won’t be sleeping much, but they and their friends will want to circle the sleeping bags for a favorite movie or just to talk and giggle until late at night.
To keep your kid comfy, don’t forget a pillow. The hosts will probably have one that your child can borrow, but many kids prefer their own pillow. It’s soft, familiar, and especially for younger kids, will be a comfort item like their favorite stuffed animal.
When it comes to packing their backpack, they’ll want cozy kids’ pajamas along with a few basics that they’re less likely to remember. Many a child will remember their favorite stuffed animals and toys but forget things like underwear, socks, and a toothbrush—lol. Always check their backpack before they leave to make sure they have what they will need.
Plan an easy outfit for them to wear the next day. Jeans, a T-shirt, socks, and kids’ sneakers are solid choices. That way, if they can play outside or go somewhere with their friends before they come home, they’ll be comfy and stylish.
Make sure that you know what the agenda will be. If your child will be accompanying another family to an event that could be a bit dressy, like a family birthday party or out to dinner, ask what the other children will be wearing. Most families are casual when it comes to dressing kids, but you don’t want your child to be invited somewhere and not have proper clothing for the occasion. They’ll want to wear what their friends are wearing to be comfy.
Will swimming or playing in sprinklers be a possibility? If so, make sure your little one has their kids’ swimsuit, a beach towel, and perhaps water shoes with them.
Swimming is a safety issue, of course, so make sure and communicate with the other parents about your requirements (e.g., having a lifeguard available for swimming). Also, keep sun safety in mind. Send some sunscreen and perhaps a rash guard with your child if an afternoon of swimming is on the agenda.
There is no garment more versatile than a kids’ hoodie. A hoodie can warm them up if the evening gets chilly or the air conditioning is aggressive, be a handy layer if other clothes get wet or dirty, and even be rolled up as a comfy pillow for car rides.
We don’t always think of outerwear when we think of summer sleepovers, but depending upon the weather, this can be important. If rain is a possibility, consider a rain jacket and rain boots for optimal comfort and fun. There may be puddles for stomping in!
Don’t forget to pack the fun stuff! It’s always nice when a young guest arrives at your home with something to add to the occasion, so make sure and return the favor. If you want to send movies, games, or electronics with your child, make sure that the other parents are fine with this and keep movie ratings in mind. Some parents may be fine with a PG-13 rating if they’re familiar with the content; others may be stricter. Make sure that your rules will be followed for your child, but discuss the expectations that the other family has, too. If your child has an older sibling, you may be more used to your child getting exposed to slightly older entertainment and be comfortable with it depending upon the item. Parents who have only younger kids may have different expectations. If your child brings snacks, ask the other parents about food allergies and if they have any specific rules about snacks that your child will need to observe while they’re a guest in their home.
Respect the stuffed animals and favorite fleece throws! Even if you know the other family well and your child is excited to go to a summer sleepover, when it gets close to bedtime, they will want their regular comfort items. Having access to these will not only help them to feel comfy in the moment, but it will also give them the confidence to go new places and try new things as they grow. We all need to feel comfortable and safe as we venture into new environments.
With these packing tips, your kids will have great summer sleepovers. Bring on the fun!