Summer Survival Tips for Parents
How I plan to stay sane with a house full of kids.
I'm going to be honest. As a stay at home mom, the thought of having both of my children at home with me all day this summer actually sounds terrifying.
Don't get me wrong, I love my kids. But just thinking about all the hours that I'll have to fill with activities makes me want to crawl into bed and suck my thumb.
So, I decided to compile a list of activities and daily routines that will ensure my sanity in the heat of summer. My goal is to not once hear a child say "Mom, I'm bored!" Plus, a little structure never hurt anybody.
Get outside-The first order of the day will be to head outside while the temperature is cool. Let the kids hunt for lizards, play in the dirt, run around to let off steam, and just enjoy the fresh air. The earlier in the morning the better. It's amazing just how entertaining your own back yard can be.
Do family chores-Everyone will make his own bed, put dirty clothes in the washer, and help put away clean folded clothes. Discipline works wonders for a bored child.
Play with our senses-There are few things in life as satisfying as running your fingers through all kinds of textures. Fill a plastic box with dry rice and let the kids drive Hot Wheels through it. Stick them in swimsuits and spray shaving cream on the table and let them draw shapes in it. The messier the activity, the more fun it will be.
Water Fun-Why not let them clean up from sensory hour by running through the sprinkler? A water gun fight is always awesome but giving the kids a hose a to wash the car is even better. Let's not forget how much a slip-and-slide can be.
Play in the kitchen-Grab all the ingredients and bake some cupcakes together. After they're all done and you've sampled a few, wrap up the rest and take them to the fire department. The fire men will love it and might even let you poke around the fire station. Bake another batch and take a basket to the children's floor of the hospital. It feels great to give to others.
Learn our city-Take a trip to the airport and let the kids watch the planes take off and land. Ride the city bus so that the children can experience public transportation if they haven't already. Watching the world around you is almost like seeing a free movie.
Take in culture-Visit the Georgia Museum of Art or a Natural History Museum. Let the children ask a million questions and then search the museum for answers. They will think that you are super smart.
Visit the library-What could be better than a huge air conditioned building filled with books? We plan to go once a week to a scheduled activity like story time or puppet shows. Let the kids check out a few books and keep a basket by the front door as a designated spot for them. Have reading time once a day so that they can soak in the story and be ready for a new book the next week.
Quiet time-Have a set period of time during the day when the children must play in their own rooms. At that point, mommy will need a break. It doesn't matter what they do while they're in there as long as it's a quiet activity.
Make time for yourself-I learned this the hard way. Make a point to nurture yourself at least once throughout the day. Whether it's meditating, showering, reading, napping, or just staring at the wall, be sure to take a moment just for you.
I'm actually looking froward to falling into the rhythm of the summer and have high hopes my survival list will keep my home fun.
Do you ever find yourself in a rut when your children are home full time? Do you have any fun ideas of activities to do with kids in the summer? Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comments.