Summer has finally arrived! After months of shovelling snow, driving carpool, and checking homework folders, parents are breathing a collective sigh of relief. Summer offers weeks of unscheduled freedom - until the first cry reaches your ears… "I'm boooooooored!" Suddenly you feel that summer is stretching out before you, threatening weeks of heat, humidity, and whining. Don't panic! The solution may be simpler than you think!
Here are some ideas to help you and your kids have a wonderful summer this year!
Boredom Breeds Creativity.
In defence of boredom, kids who are never bored miss out on opportunities to learn to entertain themselves and be creative. Put together a "Bored Box" at the beginning of summer, and all summer long you have somewhere to send them when those dreaded words pop out. Tailor the contents to your kids, but you can't go wrong with craft supplies, stickers, coloring books, small Lego kits, or jigsaw puzzles.
Get together regularly with another family that you enjoy spending time with. Kids won't be bored with friends around, and more kids relieve the pressure among siblings and minimize bickering. Chances are, you'll get to sit and chat with your friend over coffee while the kids have a blast.
Summer weather offers unique opportunities for kids to get messy! All those activities that you might usually say no to can be indulged outside without fear of destroying the furniture. From water play to mud to science experiments, messes are the stuff memories are made of! It's great for their development too!
Start a Summer Project Together.
Starting a larger project that you work on together every day or nearly every day, can save you the time, cost, and energy of deciding what to do each day. Find something that fits your family's identity and interests, or something that needs to be done that your kids are big enough to help with. Brainstorm ideas together! It can be almost anything, from repainting a room to starting a garden to training to run a 5K!
You only get so many summers with them before suddenly they're off on their own, so you want to make it count. But making it count doesn't have to mean trips to Europe or signing up for every camp out there. Those things are great, but there's a lot to be said for just letting kids be kids on their summer vacations.
Don't forget to make summer special for yourself, too! Everyone needs to refuel a bit over the summer! Why not give your morning cup of coffee a little summer make-over and indulge in a summery flavor like apple pie, coconut delight, or Jamaican rum? A few luxurious moments with an exotic cup of coffee can feel like a mini-vacation wherever you are!