Summer Essentials

It’s only the middle of June, but it’s extremely hot already! We’re settling into our summer routine and having a lot of fun. I thought I’d share a few essentials for our family this summer.

The Pool.

First up, I bought a small pool for our back porch over the weekend. With the city being closed this year, my kids aren’t going to get much pool time unless we drive to another town. I bought a 6′ snap up pool for $8.99 and it’s already providing EJ with a lot of fun. Obviously it would be a million times better if the pool was on lawn and not covered, but since we don’t have any, the shade of our patio will have to do. She loves to put the slide into the pool and slide in, then yell “it’s cold!”

Rash Guard Swimwear.

I mention these to friends and about half know what they are and the other half think that I’m putting my kids in a regular t-shirt to swim. For the half that doesn’t know, rash guard shirts are made of an athletic material specifically for the water. They were first made for surfers to prevent rashes from their boards, but now lots of swimmers wear them. They’re made with an ultraviolet protective material to help prevent sunburns too. These are crucial. If BG goes to the pool with his friends I sunscreen him ahead of time and send spray sunscreen with him, but if he’s wearing a rash guard I worry less about his fair skin. Likewise, when Eleni plays in the water at daycare, the babysitter doesn’t have to be quite as diligent with the sunscreen if she has her rash guard. I haven’t worn one myself, but I’ve seen so many cute rash guard options for women lately. Look at this J. Crew beauty.

I just ordered this cute rash guard suit for EJ from Nordstrom.


I’m pretty sure I blogged about these last year, but I love Native shoes on EJ for the summertime. She actually loves them too because she doesn’t have to wear socks and she can get them on and off by herself. I’ve had a lot of people ask me if they get sweaty and stinky–the answer so far is no, they don’t. I wash them in my laundry room sink with dish soap about once every couple weeks (or sooner if they get muddy), and I haven’t noticed an odor.

Here’s EJ rocking her pink Natives. She also has a purple pair. We’re getting a lot of use out of her Disney shirts too.

Water Table.

This is the gift that keeps on giving. The Easter Bunny brought this water table to EJ last year and we’ve since given a few as gifts. I’m surprised how much she still loves this thing a year later! It was only $50 too, so total win! We keep this on our back porch and fill it when we’re barbecuing or while I’m watering flowers–basically any time that EJ wants to play outside but we don’t have time for swim suits. BG played wither and the water table a little bit last year, but I think he’ll be too old for that this summer. He’s way more into playing ball and riding his bike!

So far, that’s what’s been keeping our family pretty happy this summer. What are some summer items you’re loving that we might need to check out?


  1. AWESOME! I was not aware of this swimwear brand! I will definitely be following them from now on for my children xx

    • angsamp says:

      Yes, do it! It’s the best–it’s more of a product than brand though, so you can buy rash guard in several brands.

  2. I think I just heard of rash guards like two days ago aha. But I agree they are so essential for the kiddies in the summer. There’s always room for an extra layer of safety!

  3. Francesca_sevenroses says:

    Loved your list! I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Water Table before, looks awesome! Now I know what to give to all my nephews/nieces and neighbors’ children during Summer birthday parties 🙂 thanks!

    • angsamp says:

      It’s an awesome gift idea, and Amazon sells them, which makes it even better! As a mom, I don’t like the combo water-sand tables because they are a mess, so just stick to the simple water ones!

  4. These are great summer essentials! And your daughter is so adorable!

    Belle | One Awesome Momma

  5. Allyson says:

    I love all of these products I have a niece and nephew that to spoil so my wallet probably won’t love this but it’s time for some shopping I LOVE that rash guard

  6. Gosh she’s cute! We love a good water table over here too!

  7. Yes! Kiddie pools and water tables for life. The shoes are adorable, too!

  8. I have been wanting a water table, or my kids haha! And love that rash guard 🙂

  9. raracheckman says:

    These are great essentials! Love those shoes!! We frequent the beach a lot during the summer months. I have a Lands End bag that is roomy and sturdy; it’s a great essential to fit all our other essentials! 🙂

  10. Yes to Natives, cheap pools and rash guards! Those are seriously saving my sanity every summer! We don’t have a water table but I know my son would love it!

  11. We are BIG plastic pool users! This year we sprung for the “fancy” one with the built in slide and it does NOT disappoint!

  12. She is too cute! We absolutely LOVE our water table! Hands down one of the best gifts we have ever received!

  13. I just bought a water table today!!

  14. Love the Flamingo top, super cute!!

  15. I totally need a water table…..

  16. I like the shoes and the table most, I can imagine how happy are kids while playing on them.

  17. I have 4 kids, and all the summer essentials….except for Natives! I see them everywhere. I must try!

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