Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Things to Pack for a Weekend Sports trip with your Youth Athlete

Subtitle: You didn’t have to pack this much crap when they were infants….

1) SUV or Minvan—required to carry one kid plus items #2-30

2) Sports specific equipment and uniform pieces in every color…Ex. If you are going to a girls soccer tournament, in the uniform category alone, you will need to bring: all 3 colors of jerseys, all 3 colors of shorts, all 3 colors of socks), cleats, shinguards, sports bra, hairbands (of all 3 colors), headbands (of all three colors), soccer bag, and ball. If you are the parent of the keeper, add goalie jerseys (2), goalie pants or shorts, gloves (2 pair).
And soccer has way less equipment than most…imagine your vehicle if your kid is on a hockey or football team, or is a pole vaulter, or a horseback rider (yes, you have to bring your own horse for most shows).

3) Cooler—filled with Gatorade, water, grapes, other fruit that is easy to keep and fun to throw

4) Igloo waterbottle-1 quart size at least

5) The kids (and your) other clothes like pajamas, underwear, jackets, flip flops, etc

6) Chairs for watching the game

7) Your kids regular medicine…who can forget that tournament that someone forgot their child’s Ritalin? Seriously, see #22

8) Sunscreen

9) Advil, Tylenol

10) Band-aids, Neosporin

11) Home skin stitches kit

12) Hats and sunglasses for parents watching the game in the 105 heat

13) Car Paint, in case you win the tournament so you can drive home in an embarrassing show of glory

14) Sports Magnets

15) Camera, Video Camera, film, batteries and battery chargers

16) MapQuests (or Google Maps)—before the trip it is extremely PRUDENT to get the address of your hotel, your field, court, rink, sportsplex, wherever the games will be location, and the restaurant you are having your team dinners at. Then create and print out maps from home to hotel, hotel to fields, etc. It’s even more PRUDENT to actually bring these on the trip (I have a mental block on that step for some reason). Or…if you have have a GPS navigator system in your car, all you need are the addresses, no need for printing out.

17) List of Cellphone numbers (in addition to them being plugged into your cellphone) for the other parents, coaches, and teammates for when you or they are lost or your team caravan from field to restaurant gets split up

18) Earplugs

19) Hotel with bar

20) Valium or any other member of the Diazepam family

21) Back-up hotel in case you get kicked out of the original one (high likelihood)

22) Bathing suits and goggles for siblings of the athletes- One of the very few BENEFITS for the poor siblings who must be dragged to these events is that they get to swim in the hotel pool and the athletes don’t. It certainly doesn’t make it worth it to them, but at least they have the POOL.

23) Deck of cards, magazines, games (remember the games or events are often just a small portion of the day, you must find a way to fill the rest of the day with “quiet, resting” type activities…Not Allowed are: swimming, working out in the hotel weight room, one coach even banned going to the mall as it was too much walking, and running up and down the halls or stairs of the hotels, etc.

24) Extra set of car keys (don’t ask)

25) IPod/Blackberry/Laptop and all associated battery chargers and A/C adaptor cords

26) DVDs if you are lucky enough to have a vehicle with a DVD player

27) Gameboy or Nintendo DS

28) Your Subway Club Card, cause that’s the only friggin’ restaurant you’re allowed to eat at between games or events.

29) Lots and lots of money and credit cards.

30) The kid
31)*ziplock bags
33)*garbage bags
34)*toiletry case and everything in it
35)*books/mags for mom to read, People/US other are great to buy and read and share w/other moms....when else do you have 48 hours to do nothing but catch up on Lindsay Lohan, Brittany and whoever happens to be hot at the moment.
36)*kids backpack and homework and novel so s/he can get homework and required reading done in the car or hotel
37)* every piece of protective/corrective equipment you could possibly need (ex. knee braces, ankle braces, splints, prewrap, shoe inserts, Ace Bandages, etc)

I have at one time or another forgotten nearly every item on this list, some of them numerous times. Actually, as I re-read over the list the only one I haven’t ever forgotten is #1, which would be impossible. So, clearly I’m an experienced idiot. I even forgot #30 once, not actually my kid, but a kid I’d promised to take to a softball tournament….nice, huh!? I guarantee there are at least 3 critical items missing from this list….as I remember and add I’ll put them in red and with asterisks next to them.

The good news is there is a Wal-Mart in every town and the coach forgot to specifically say “No going to Wal-Mart”, so that is often how we fill our time between games. Good Luck!


SportsMom said...

I keep a plastic bin in the back of the SUV with "just in case" items, including many of the things on your list. Among the items in the bin are:

Folding umbrella
Emergency blanket (the ones you can get for camping -- good to have anyway if you live in cold weather climate)
Garbage bags
Powdered Gatorade
Extra bottles of water
Portable fan
Bug Spray
Granola bars
Hand warmers
Hair stuff
Lip balm

The bin used to transfer from car to car depending on who was driving, but now that I have two playing travel soccer I'm just going to make up separate ones for each car.

Juicebox Mom said...

Sportsmom: That's an AWESOME idea and thanks for the list...I also always try to bring ziplocks, garbage bags, PONCHOS!!, and umbrella from your list. I'm going to create a box/tub like you suggest and just leave it in the car, THANKS!!

See...I told you guys I'd leave a few(!) things off my list, already up to FOUR..yikes.

Also, just remembered I forgot to list the Toiletry Bag (that would be 5), uh.....Think I need to add Aricept to the list.

Crabby McSlacker said...

Oh my gosh, I had no idea!

You parents never cease to amaze me--you have to be so organized!

I can barely get my own butt out the door when I need to go somewhere.

Mark Salinas said...

Wowee! That is quite the list! Nice input from sportsmom!

Crazy Mom of 3 said...

Ahh yes, forgetting things. I forget something everytime we go somewhere and it's always something critical. Like the time we went camping at a lake and I forgot to pack my husbands swim trunks. I also leave items behind all the time. I always compare myself to Hansel and Grettle, leaving crumbs behind so I don't get lost. I'm writing down your list for future reference.

Heidi said...

THAT is funny. I should print this out and give it to Mr. C. His idea of a weekend tournament packing? The uniform, socks, underwear and shoes. He figured they could "wash everything out each night and hang it dry".
I like the first commenters idea of keeping the stocked bin in the vehicle. I may have to do that now that sports is starting agian!

MizFit said...


population MIZFIT

Im saving this even though mine is only thisclose to 3.


I know Ill be needing it and, if not, a friend surely will.


Merry said...

I really want to ask about #24, but I'm going to be good and refrain.
Have to say, I think you should give yourself a pat on the back if you remember /most/ of the things on that list!

Soccer Mom In Heels said...

holy crap! right now, my little guy is only 9 and his games are at our school which is 5 minutes from our house, thank goodness! is this what i have to look forward to?