Sponsored by Zappos.
I've admitted to you all in the past that I'm a bit of a perfectionist. That tendency spills over into a LOT of aspects of my life and I actually make a conscious effort to limit my expectations around the cadence of day-to-day life with four small children.
When it comes to shopping and products, though, I maintain my dang-near-impossible-to-please attitude. I have certain standards and I'm always on the hunt for the best. It probably stems out of my research background and the fact that I once wanted to be a librarian: I get an indescribable amount of joy from being a resource for friends and family. It lights up my day when a reader emails and asks, “What's the best such-and-such thing for such-and-such age?”
I put on my sleuthing hat and bust out my deductive reasoning skills and jot down notes about my own experience. I've GOT this! Especially when those questions are about kid stuff. Having had four kids back-to-back-to-back (to back!) I feel like I'm in the thick of this experience and I want to help other parents by sharing what I've learned in any way, shape or fashion that I can. So when I say that I've found “the perfect” thing for a certain scenario, those words mean a lot to me. They mean hours of work. They mean connection. They mean to make a difference.
Anyway, where were we? Right. Shoes. I feel like my life has been pretty much overtaken by shoes over the last few years. Little boots, sandals, moccs and sneakers have taken residence in every corner of my house. Children can be downright finnicky about shoes, and it doesn't help that their needs change not only with age but also with every season! So here's what I've learned as far as sourcing shoes for spring.
What to Look for in your Spring Shoes
All Ages: Rain-or-Shine
Here in SoCal, our weather is as diverse as our lives. Take our typical Saturday: one minute we're frolicking through the countryside sunshine and the next we find ourselves getting poured on in the city. This time of year, if we allow ten minutes on the clock or ten miles in any given direction, our setting can change dramatically. So it's important to get shoes that can go from downpour-to-desert without getting soaked or stuffy.
Toddlers: Seek out Straps
Ah, two. The age of unbridled affection and tantrums. My little dudes at this age always seem to have a bizarrely difficult time keeping shoes on in public. Toddlers have absolutely no sense of logic or decorum, so they like to yank their shoes off at inopportune moments and randomly chuck them into the air. I foil that by seeking out shoes with straps. These Crocs Kids Swiftwater Sandals have a hook-and-loop closure so he actually keeps them on. They also have a raised toe bumper and lightweight mesh upper, making them perfect for everything from the splash pad to the park. As an added bonus, the foam footbed means he'll tromp around all day long without feeling the urge to throw these at anyone.
Preschoolers: Do it Themselves
For our 4-year-old, we still need shoes that are good for rain-or-shine play, but the big priority is that he can easily put them on and take them off without help. “I can do it!” is this middle child's battle cry. With the comfortable heel strap on this classic-look Crocs Kids Crocband Clog, he really can.
Elementary: A Need for Speed
I know I have a winning pair of shoes on my hand when the 6-year-old calls them his “speedy shoes.” These fit the bill with their elastic band for easy slip-on-and-stay-on action and a mesh upper for the lightweight wear he needs. The real must-have thing for this age is tons of tread, which can be challenging to find in a play-friendly shoe. Some Boy's Crocs Kids Swiftwater Easy-On Shoe never fail to keep him at the front of the pack, whether he's sprinting across a campsite or taking steps along slippery sidewalks.
Not to be left out, my shoes have a demanding task ahead of them with all these kids to chase after! Since spring days and weird weather tend to have us in and out of the house and shuffling from spot-to-spot, my biggest need is something that rolls with whatever punches I throw at it. My Crocs Citilane Roka Slip-Ons are suuuper comfortable and they're totally breathable with a perforated upper, so I can hope in any puddle or jaunt through humid weather without getting mucky. I love that they go with a pair of jean shorts or a cute dress – without missing a beat.
Our go-to shopping spot for Crocs (and any shoes, for that matter) is Zappos! They make it simple for us to outfit the entire family, with fast-and-free shipping, a 365-day return policy and tons of sorting options so we can find just what we need. It's perfect for our busy life and wildly-picky tastes.
So no matter where life takes you…whatever spectrum of tantrums, tornadoes or tantalizing adventures lay ahead for you this spring, you'll be prepared.
What are your go-to spring shoes?