This picture cracks me up. For the record, we did NOT ask them to pose like that. I think this is the result of being the offspring of a fashion blogger. God help me.
In any case, SUMMER IS A COMIN’. Are you ready?
Normally, my answer would be a resounding NO. But this year, in terms of summer readiness, I’m doing pretty good. That’s one of the many (many!!) bonuses of a tropical Spring Break: we’re totally ready for SUMMA SUMMA SUMMATIME.
And by “we” I mean the boys. Kid style is much less complicated. I am in no way done shopping for myself (don’t get any crazy ideas, Mike Draugelis).
But let’s talk about sandals for kids. More specifically, let’s get down to the nitty gritty and discuss the following pressing topics:
1. TOMS vs Flip-Flops
2. Are Keen sandals worth it because they are just so truly practical even if they are also completely awful looking? AMIRIGHT?!!?
My Feelings on TOMS Can Best Be Expressed by This Photo Montage
Here’s the thing: I love TOMS for littles in the summer. They’re lightweight, won’t overheat the feet, can get wet, will dry, and both of my boys have been putting them on by themselves for years. (This is the main advantage they have over Saltwater sandals. We’re big, HUGE fans of Saltwater here, but I hate having to buckle them each and every time we go outside. But for all-day outside exploring, they are hard to beat.)
We went to Puerto Rico for Spring Break, and no matter the activity, the boys romped around in their TOMS.
Also? That BELLY.
Pax – Original Penguin Stripe Polo, Volcom Surf& Turf Hybrid Shorts, Tiny TOMS in red, Pax’s socks are old, but he’d be all over these shark socks, the orange sunglasses are gone, but yellow is still available
I also love the fact that for every pair of TOMS purchased, a pair is donated to a child in need. Such an amazing concept. Also, they’re affordable. So when my oldest loses his TOMS mid-trip and is forced to wear his flip-flops for the rest of the vacay, I’m $30-ish mildly annoyed rather than $50+ ENRAGED. Win-win.
Kowabunga tshirt, Volcom Recliner Sandal
OK, Flip-Flops. Bring It.
Both of my guys love their flip-flops. Raines loves being able to kick them off so easily (which is exactly the problem if you ask me), and Pax loves them because his brother has them. The reason I always pack the flip-flops, despite my misgivings, is because this pair of TOMS isn’t the first shoe to be lost on a Draugelis vacay. And then there was that time we made it (3+ hours) into a trip only to discover that neither boy was wearing any shoes at all. GRRRR.
So yeah – no matter the destination, flip-flops are in the bag. (Besides, they’re great for dirty bathrooms.)
In any case, I was pretty impressed with how well R did hiking in the jungle rainforest in his flip-flops. Logical consequences people.
I don’t love flip-flops for toddlers (or heck, kiddos four and under). It’s tough for them to walk around in flip-flops for any length of time. HOWEVER….if your little one insists (and Pax can be verrrry crazy I mean convincing when he wants his way)….I swear by Reef’s Ahi Flip-Flop. The tinier sizes have that back strap (you can see it on Pax below), which makes a huge difference.
For older kiddos? Volcom. Really comfortable, but insanely durable, too.
Pax – Um…the hysterical outfit I bought downtown Puerto Rico in desperation when we realized we let Pax leave the hotel in leggings and a sweatshirt in 90 degree weather. #badmommy. His shoes are Reef’s Ahi Flip-Flops (exact color is sold out, but Nordstrom has a ton).
Now…let’s talk KEENS
You’re familiar with Keen sandals, right? If a hiking boot and a sandal had a baby….you’d end up with Keens. As you can imagine, if one is the type that insists on dressing their child like a tiny hipster [S raises hand] Keens do NOT make the cut.
But….as I recall, when Raines was a little guy, Keens were my go-to summer sandal for his little self. I’m sure I have a picture around here somewhere…..
Oh. My. GAWD. Look at my baby boy. Look at my RAINES! Look at that face, those intense eyebrows, those lips, those pudgy little hands…..I DIE. Where did the time go? Who cares what they look like, my Keen-wearing little man and I had so, SO many adventures together!! Keens protected his cute little piggies everywhere we went: climbing on rocks, wading through streams, stomping in mud…
And now I’m sobbing. Keens, I LOVE you, I really, really do. I do NOT care that you are not hipster-baby approved. You are totally practical and durable and all of those totally boring words which when put together in this case means FUN. You. Are. FUN.
(And crazy-emotional-mom-rant aside, you’ve gotta check out the colorway on the girls’ sandals. Well played, Keens. My favs are below.)
Shop – Fav Sandals For Kids
My Favorite TOMS
Durable, Walkable Flip-Flops
The Coolest Keens
You guys, what the heck did I do for Pax when he was a toddler? I know I didn’t agonize over his footwear choices like I did for Raines….
Riiiiiiight. [hangs head in shame] Those poor, second babies.
A big, HUGE thank-you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post – this walk down memory lane was such fun. As always, all product choices, thoughts, and opinions are my own. (Or as Pax would say, “MINE OWN”.) And readers, thank you for supporting the retailers who help support The Mom Edit – it doesn’t go unnoticed, and is so very much appreciated.