Becoming a parent is one thing that will change the way you look at your everyday carry system. When you are single or simply married without children, your EDC can be however you want it to be. When you have kids, there is a lot more to think about then your needs. In fact, once you have kids your needs simply vanish into the night, along with my sanity.
Here is a category that I take to heart. I have two children still living at home and anywhere they go I make sure they have something to keep them occupied. I should mention first that they both do own cell phones however, I do not keep service plans on them. Unless they are around wifi they have no connection to the internet.
A cell phone, even without service can still provide entertainment. Keep their phones loaded with books they like to read, the music they like to listen to, and games that will function without service. Power is always an issue if you rely on electronics to keep your children occupied.
Inside my EDC bag, I carry a portable USB battery bank. This allows me to charge their devices when they have forgotten. I also add in connection cables for their specific devices. This includes my children’s Bluetooth headphones as well. As a backup inside the cable pouch in my EDC bag, I also carry two spare pairs of headphones. They come in handy if the kids did not bring theirs or if I need them during the day.
Now that we have power all sorted out we should also remember to forget power as well. Find ways to keep their attention on whatever the task is. Engage them in the activity or by allowing them to learn things on their own. Both are prime ways to make sure that children keep their attention on what you are doing. Sometimes boredom can’t be helped. Car rides are one of those times. We pass the time by listening to music. It becomes a game with each person, in turn, picking the next song that everyone is listening too.
This is a category that no one wants to think about. In the world that we find ourselves in, it is a reality that we must think about. You should plan to pack two distinctly different first aid kits. One of these kits should a standard BooBoo kit. Bandaids wound disinfection, and sting relief is among the first things you should think about adding.
This first kit should also include any and all specific needs. Medical conditions that require you or your children to take medication or need life-saving medication should be stored here. You can also cover things like bug repellant, sunscreen, and hand sanitizer.
The second kit should be a dedicated trauma kit. This is the point where even most preppers and survivalists get things wrong. Most people carry the basics we have already mentioned but, unless you are military or law enforcement, not many people think to carry around life-saving medical supplies. Firstly everyone should find and take a first aid course that covers CPR and other life-saving techniques. Anything you plan on carrying in your bag you should also get training in its use.
A basic trauma kit should be able to treat blood loss and major injury. This kit is not a substitution for a hospital with trained medical staff. It should be designed to provide emergency life-saving measures until proper help has arrived. There are so many items that can go into a kit like this I will dedicate an entire article to it at a later date.
One sure-fire way to satisfy the mini demons we created is to keep them fed. That by itself is a full-time job. Children with their high metabolism seem to never get full. Having some sort of snacks in your bag is prudent. I carry things like beef jerky and power bars. My entire family will eat them and beef jerky pairs well with other foods when you layer your survival system. You should pick foods that hold up well to high heat and low temperatures. Make sure they will last at least 6 months. Food in my EDC bag is rarely around more than a week before eating but, on the outside chance, I do not want to find it has expired.
As a parent, your survival needs multiple with every kid that you have. Once they are old enough they can take over some of the responsibility of carrying some of the load but, until then it is all on us. My children are at the age that I am turning responsibility for most things over to them. Survival needs such as regulating core body temperature are one area that I still exert control over.
Don’t be afraid to let them own it.
Here is a point that a lot of modern parents are not understanding. Allow your children to own their mistakes.
KID: “Dad I am hungry can we stop and get something to eat?”
DAD: “Did you bring food with you?”
Dad: “Nope we are not stopping.”
Did your kid’s phones go dead and now they are bored? Don’t worry, make them own that too.
As a parent, I carry items that will allow me to help my children when the unexpected happens. Like a short drive turns into an hour-long marathon. I do not carry item so that my children begin to rely on me doing everything for them.
There is the basic information, you decide the outcome!