How to Create a Sick Day Survival Kit

There are only a few things that can send shivers down my spine. Someone uttering the word moist, the sound of nails on a chalkboard, mustard spilling onto someone’s clothes…and, of course, cold and flu season. Because as we moms know, there isn’t much worse than when your child is sick and there is absolutely nothing you can do to make it better. And don’t you find that sick days tend to pop up when you have a huge deadline at work or a vacation or holiday to prepare for? Or maybe that’s just me.

After having a horrific winter filled with the flu and other super bugs that kept tormenting my family over and over, I decided to prepare for cold and flu season like I never have before by creating a Sick Day Survival Kit. Was I over prepared? Maybe. But once the first hint of the flu hit my house, I shockingly wasn’t flustered because of my box of germ fighting goodies. And when Mama isn’t stressed or anxious, and it makes a HUGE difference in my house. So do yourself a favor and check out how I survive sick days with my Sick Day Survival Kit.


Kleenex (the soft, lotion infused kind)

Toilet Paper (the softest you can find…look for those ever convincing bears on the package!)

Paper Towels (the more absorbent the better)

Can of Lysol Disinfecting Spray

Fever Stickers (yes, this is a thing and they are AMAZING)

Temporal Thermometer (Exergen is our favorite brand)

Tylenol (Liquid and pill form)

Motrin (Liquid and pill form)

Cough drops

Nasal spray

Sore Throat Pops (Little Remedies is a favorite)

Vicks Vapor Rub (and don’t forget the plug ins, too!)



Ground Cinnamon

Vitamin Water


Hand Soap (the cloudy kind that has lotion infused)

Hand Sanitizer (again, the kind that has lotion infused)


Large plastic bowl

2 old towels



Coloring Books

Cheap craft kits (The Dollar Store, Target, and Michael’s have great, cheap options)

Small gift bag

Small trinkets and toys (think stocking stuffers and items that you would find in a Happy Meal)

New books (Stockpile some from school Scholastic book orders)

Animal crackers

Goldfish crackers


Apple sauce pouches


I know, I know…my list might seem a bit…much. But let me tell you…it will cover just about ANYTHING that comes your way. One of the worst things about a sick day is having to schlep your sick kid into the car so you can go to the pharmacy to get medicine and other standbys such as Vitamin Water and animal crackers but if you create a box like this, you are totally and utterly prepared.


If you look through the list, you will see that I have included some really random things like a small gift bag and some very specific items like the Vicks Vapor Rub plug in. Why? Because kids can decorate a small gift bag with markers, stickers, etc. and then use that bag to corral all of their dirty tissues so you don’t get sick picking them up. And the Vicks plug in? It’s been a sleeping GAME CHANGER for us ever since our first cold and flu season as parents.


While I didn’t include a bottle of wine or a vat of coffee in the Sick Day Survival Kit, you definitely can add that in. Not something you prefer? Just be sure to cut yourself a little slack and give yourself some grace. If that means that your mountain of laundry grows? So be it. If all your kid wants to do is watch Disney Junior, ignore any and all screen time rules (for the record, I think “Octonauts” is the least annoying show on that network). And if you are starting to go stir crazy, take a break and head outside…even when not feeling well most kids would love to paint the snow…and don’t feel bad calling in reinforcements (whether it is grandma or your favorite Uber driver delivering some much needed Starbucks).

Oh, and wash your hands. ALL THE TIME.
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  1. Amber Myers says

    I need to make one of these just in case. I keep hearing about how bad the flu is this year, and I’m so worried someone in the family is going to catch it. Ack!

  2. Jenny Finney says

    I love your sick day survival guide! I normally make sure we have at least most of this, but for kids, the bag, stickers and crayons are a must and something I will have to add to my list.

    • Amanda says

      It is the perfect way to keep the kids entertained and make sure that you aren’t picking up snot rags all day long!

  3. Anosa Malanga VA says

    I guess this is also applicable to everyone. Flu is everywhere and we cannot tell when will it strikes. We are very prone to this especially during winter season. Better be ready that sorry.

  4. Heather says

    I didn’t know that there were Vick’s Plug-ins. I’m going to have to look for those! That will be great in my kids’ rooms. I like how you said “large bowl”. I agree 100% percent. Last year my kid threw up all over my brand new couch because that large bowl was not available! It was so gross!

  5. Amanda says

    It relieves so much stress when you plan ahead so you don’t have to stress about going to the store with a sick kiddo!

  6. Amanda says

    Agreed. And trust me, the tissue gift bag is a GENIUS mom hack so you don’t end up cleaning up nasty tissues all day long.

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