Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Ultimate Baseball Mom's Survival Bag

I've been packing bags for the ballpark for the last 8 years, and I think I've now fine-tuned exactly what items a baseball mom wants to have in her bag!  First of all, you have to find the right bag.  My new favorite is the Thirty-One Organizing Utility Tote.  Check it out here.  I think it works perfectly for a baseball mom's supplies, and it's pretty darn cute too!!  Here are the essentials that every bag should have:

a towel (for wiping off dirty or wet bleachers)
a small umbrella (for those inevitable April showers)
sunscreen (Be sure to spray the kids before they start sweating!)
bug spray or wipes (a must-have in the Deep South to keep away the mosquitos and gnats)
face and hand wipes (Baby wipes or Wet-Ones work fine!)
antibacterial hand sanitizer
travel-pack of facial tissue
Dermosplast or other similar spray (for cuts, scrapes, burns, and bites)
variety of bandages
Children's Benadryl (I buy the rapid melts/meltaways of any medications that I carry in my bag.)
Jr. Tylenol

Now, depending on the ages of your other children, there are additional items you will want to include, such as small toys or coloring books/crayons to occupy little ones, and inexpensive snacks.
I buy big bags of pretzels, Goldfish crackers, etc. and separate them into snack-size bags.  The concession stand can put a strain on your budget, so coming prepared with snacks can really save you money.  Some ballparks will allow you to bring in small coolers, and others will not; I typically keep a cooler of iced Gatorades and waters in the car. 

In addition to the cooler, you may want to include a few other things in the car.  I like to pack a complete change of clothes for each kid.  You never know when they are going to leave a game covered in red dirt!  I have been known to make my boys strip down to their underwear before allowing them to get into the car.  However, I try to make sure they have extra clothes so I don't have to embarrass them that way!  I also keep folding chairs in the trunk.  Some ball parks have great bleachers and others do not.  It's best to be prepared either way.  I always use my folding chairs if we are going to be there all day.  And lastly, I keep a small blanket handy.  I am terribly cold-natured, and when the sun goes down, there is sometimes a little chill in the air during the Spring months. 

The key to a great day at the ballpark is preparation!  If you know you have everything you need, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the games!!

P.S.  I do not recommend allowing children to bring their hand-held video games to the ballpark.  My 8-year-old lost a Nintendo DS at a tournament last year.  Same thing applies to iPods, etc.  Just my personal opinion!!