Being an “Outsider” with L.L. Bean

When the weather starts to get cool, many people have visions of sipping hot chocolate by the fire, relaxing with a good book, or simply relaxing indoors. However, once you have a family, you may have noticed these visions go out the window! Kids want to immediately go outside and explore, even in the freezing cold and snow. I recently partnered with L.L.Bean and have discovered the most amazing items for cold weather and keeping my kids happy!

I haven’t always lived in a cold part of the country, but now that I do I’ve had to educate myself on the best gear for staying warm. I’ve made some mistakes when shopping for cold weather items and sometimes something that may look the warmest is actually just taking up major real-estate in my closet!

It’s certain, each year NYC will get a snowfall at least a couple of times. In upstate NY in areas such as The Pocono Mountains, the snow stays most of the winter. We recently took a trip to The Woodloch Resort in The Poconos and I was so happy to have my kids dressed appropriately so they could enjoy their time outside.

With my youngest daughter being two I was concerned she would be  extremely cold. I was also hesitant about bundling her up in too much clothing to interfere with play. The First Tracks Parka was the perfect choice for both of my daughters. The Thinsulate insulation added warmth without the bulk and the colors were bright and fun. They each have their own color and quickly became attached to their coat. The coats are water repellent, wind repellent, and have a reflective triangle on the back for safety. The girls have never complained of being cold while wearing these coats. My favorite part is the hidden “grow” feature in the sleeves. When the seems are pulled away an additional 1 1/2″ is available for guaranteed growth spurts. The First Tracks Parks is also machine washable which is an added bonus!

The girls heads and ears stay nice and warm in the Katahdin Cable hats. There is an “itch free” polyester lining that adds extra comfort and coziness! They never try to pull them off and I love that these hats don’t slip down over their eyes or fall off easily. They stay put throughout the duration of any outdoor activity.

My 9 year old son is all about comfort these days. He does not like to wear anything that is restricting or uncomfortable. The boys Mountain Bound Reversible Jacket was a perfect option for him.  The inner lining is a super soft plush fleece and the other side is a water resistant nylon. It can easily be reversed but I know he will just prefer to leave it on the soft side! I love the color combinations and again it is extremely warm without being bulky.

L.L. Bean has an amazing website feature that takes all the guess work out and saves me time from reading hundreds of customer reviews. The coats are all rated in terms of warmth and for instance this particular coat is perfect for light to moderate activity and I know my son will stay warm in -5 degree temps. The jacket is also machine washable and has the reflective detail as well. Bonus points all around!

Occasionally my kids can wear their coats from the previous year and perhaps a sweater or hat, however, snow boots must always be replaced. Little feet are always growing and this is the one item you don’t want to be without on a “snow day”!

The Kids Tread Snow Boots keeps my daughter’s feet warm and dry. They are not too tall either which is perfect and allows her to run and play. They are easy to get on and off and she loves to put them on herself. This is a perfect boot and reasonably priced as well! There is a great color selection for both boys and girls.

My son absolutely loves his snow boots this year! They look more like a sneaker but in fact they are warm and cozy on the inside as well as waterproof! The Kids Snow Sneaker uses a Primaloft insulation system which delivers reliable warmth for the winter! I’m not sure if my son will every wear a traditional snow boot again after having these.

L.L. Bean has an amazing winter sale going on right now and the items I have spoken about area all on sale! With all the snow talk, my review would not be complete without teasing my readers with some thoughts about summer! I had the honor of visiting the L.L. Bean showroom last month and got a sneak peek of some Summer items. The bathing suits are so good this year and one of my favorite items was this fun croquet set that comes with it’s own carry bag (monogram optional).

I urge everyone to go outside and experience fun winter activities and always remember to be a Bean Outsider!

Happy New Year!