Summer vacation is either upon you already or right around the corner. Even if you don’t have a school-aged child, you might be aware of this fact by that crazy-eyed, twitchy movement you see in every other mom you meet. There is a lot of “what are we going to do?” and “how are we going to make it?” chatter floating around the sandbox these days. Summer is insanely fun with kids, don’t get me wrong, but you have to go into it with a plan of attack or it will break you.
I plan our summer much more intensely than I ever though I would. I love the idea of letting kids just play all day and giving them enough time to get bored. But, for our family, I have to schedule that time in without letting the kids know about it.
Here is how our summer flushes out:
- Sis goes to three different one week camps over the summer. One a month is our current sweet spot for planned activity that allows for plenty of time to just hang out. Those go on the calendar first.
- Once those camps are down, I add in set plans like camping trips, out of town visitors, baseball games, and weddings. The non-negotiable events have to be there!
- The next step is to sit down with Sis and Bubba and ask them what they want to do over the summer. They always want beach trips and zoo visits, but every year they throw in surprises that make me glad I asked. This year Sis had a list of places she wanted to go that are labeled “toddler time” because the age range is 0 – 5 years. She is turning 6 at the end of the summer this is our last chance for a lot of these activities. Also,these programs often close down in July and August, so I have to make sure we get to them in June. See! Planning saves tears and broken promises!
- When I get the list of their wishes I go back through the calendar and pencil those in over the course of the summer. These are obviously flexible, but it helps to have them all written down somewhere so you don’t miss any. It also gives you a place to go for ideas when everyone is feeling punchy and you need to get out of the house.
- Once the out of the house trips are planned, I go back through the calendar a last time and add in craft projects. Again, these are totally flexible, but having them written down means I am more likely to have all the supplies on hand when the time comes.
Here are some of the summertime craft projects we have planned for this summer. Feel free to take this list and make it your own! Also, know that there is no way we are making all of these so don’t think I am some psycho super mom. I just like to have options!