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The heat in New Orleans during the summer is unbearable. Our family will be doing some pool hopping to help beat the heat this summer. We are so grateful for friends and family who allow us to use their pools during those hot summer weekends! It’s not always easy to get a family of six ready for a swim day, but this list of things I keep in my bag make life easier!

Mom and three kids enjoying a pool day


We always apply sunscreen (at least 50 SPF for the kids) about 20 – 30 minutes prior to heading out for a swim day. It’s one less thing we have to worry about once we get where we are going. Depending on the sunscreen, we try to reapply after being in the water for 90 minutes. Protecting your skin from the sun is important year round, but especially so when you’re in the pool for hours. 

Swimsuit (& swim diapers)

Of course you need a cute swimsuit to hit the pool! In our family, the Easter Bunny usually brings new swimsuits for each kid. Walmart and Zulily have some really cute and affordable bathing suits for everyone the in family. Also, if you have a baby who is still in diapers, don’t forget swim diapers. We have this reusable swim diaper. It’s so cute, no need for a cover!


Obviously, a no-brainer! We prefer larger beach towels. They offer plenty of snuggly room to wrap up in after swimming or to layout on to soak up some sun. They are large enough that I use mine as a nursing cover or as a canopy over the baby’s pack n play to offer some shade.


Swimming, especially in the summer heat, can create an appetite. My kids always seem SO hungry while swimming so we try to have some easy to eat snacks on hand (chips, goldfish, frozen go-gurt/applesauce pouches, etc.). Of course it is always important to hydrate so we bring our water bottles filled with plenty of water.


Our three older kids can swim on their own, but when they were smaller, we used the inflatable arm bands. For now, we use this spring float for the baby. Once he’s older, he will move on to a Puddle Jumper as he learns to swim. Remember to ALWAYS watch your children while swimming, no matter their level of swimming and regardless if they are using flotation devices! These are not a substitute for watchful eyes!

Our older three prefer to swim with goggles, so we always try to remember to bring them. At one of the grandparent’s house, we have Bling2o goggles. They are so much fun and were an Easter gift from their Kiki & Papa.

Change of Clothes

Finally, we always bring a change of clothes, diaper and wipes. With four kids, we can guarantee that at least one of them will get tired of swimming and want to relax with a book or take a nap. So we always bring extra clothes (and of course wipes & diapers for the baby). Don't forget to bring a wet bag to put wet clothes in!

Our family is going to have a blast pool hopping and spending time swimming with friends and family this summer. I hope this list helps you prepare for your swim days!

What is an essential you always bring to the pool?

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