A Dad's Guide to Summer Essentials

Even though it’s scorching inside and you’d rather be soaking your feet in a bucket of icy water, you need to take your family outside.

Sure they don’t like the heat, the sun, or the activities that you planned, but you need to do something with them. You’d better be prepared.

First on the list of essentials is the Mifold car seat. This is actually a fantastic invention that will allow you to take your child, or in my case, neice (of booster-seat age) in the car. It’s small enough to put in a backpack or glovebox for when it’s needed and is great for carpools or taxi rides.

It works like a booster seat, except it doesn’t lift the child to the seatbelt, it brings the seatbelt to the child.

Installing is easy too. Just unfold, pop out the side wings to fit and clip the seatbelt adjusting strap to the seatbelt itself. Then the the lap-band of the seatbelt goes through the hooks on the Mifold.

Next up is some shoes that can handle any adventure you’re dragging your family on. A hike, camping, or if you’ve given in and heading to the mall, these Merrell Men’s Grassbow Sport Low-Cut Gore-Tex Hiking Shoes (phew, what a mouthful) are worthy of their super-long name and are available at Mark’s Canada.

 

They’re made with a breathable mesh and synthetic upper, Gore-Tex waterproof breathable membrane (so you’ll be waterproof without being sweaty) and have all the designs you’ll need to stay super-comfy.

 

 

Once you’re out and everyone’s sunscreen’d up, lifejackets on, hats, sunglasses, been to the potty and you’ve taken, edited and posted your “spontaneous” selfie, you’re ready to hit the water on a kayak. Luckily there’s really no need to spend a lot on one, so try this Pelican Boost 100 Sit-On Kayak from Canadian Tire.  Right now it’s on at $320 and can fit up to 300lbs, which is plenty for an ample dad and someone small.

If you’re bored of taking the same old-snaps on your phone and want to by a little more low-tech and more fun, grab a Fujifilm Intax Wide camera, which is basically a newer version of the old Polaroid cameras. The film is a little bigger and will serve as a more tangible keepsake.

 

As a parent, it’s your job to be more prepared than a group of Boy Scouts. This includes having water, snacks, and of course, a large First Aid Kit. This one from Lifeline (via Amazon.ca) has 85 pieces of potentially disaster-averting equipment.

 

You should be covered for at least a weekend of outdoor fun. Did I forget anything? Let me know in the comments.

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to Mifold for providing the folding car seat for me to test. Sadly, I didn’t have it long as my niece has now claimed it as her own.