by Christy Laverty
Ah summer. The kids are home from school and in your hair so to speak.
I look forward to summer break with my girls. Many of you know I work evenings, so during the school year I don’t get to see my kids very much. They spend the day at school and I work evenings so I see them in the morning before school and for a few moments after school.
So when summer arrives we can finally reconnect and spend some time together. I also get to sleep in! (Hurray for sleeping in!)
But don’t get me wrong, while I love to be with my girls, they do drive me crazy from time to time. O.K. I will be honest; sometimes they make me want to run to the bathroom and lock the door.
So with that in mind I thought it would be helpful to create a list of things to help you (ok, me) survive summer time with the kids and keep everyone happy, healthy and entertained.
1. Don’t Be a Couch Potato
This one seems obvious but I am guilty of falling into this trap while I work to get some housework done. It is important to manage time spent in front of the television. I say one movie or a couple of shows are enough and then get them moving. Send the kids outside to play, skip, or chalk while you get some cleaning done. Everyone will be happier when they don’t sit on the couch. I find my kids tend to get cranky and then start to bicker when they are inside too long.
2. Keep Them Busy
This one kind of goes hand in hand with number one. I find my children start to bicker when they are bored. Sometimes they just need help finding things to do. Chores are a great way to keep the kids busy and it helps Mom and Dad finish up the housework faster so they can join in the summer time fun. Summer shouldn’t be an excuse to toss routine and chores out the window.
3. Be Creative
Crafts are a great way to keep everyone entertained. There are a lot of great DIY kid projects online. Check out my blog http://FrecklesKids@blogspot.com for a few neat ideas, personally I like the t-shirt bracelets and the decoder! Be creative with the kids and keep it simple so that you are not creating more work for yourself.
4. Play-dates Are Your Friend
I love play-dates, even when they are at my house (sometimes). Play-dates are great to keep the kids busy and out of my hair. Team up with other moms so that you can each take a turn with play-dates. Rotate play-dates around so every parent gets some down time away from the kids.
Summer is a great time to get familiar with your neighbourhood library and keep the kids reading. We all know what happens to kids over the summer; they tend to lose some of what they have learned during the school year because they aren’t learning academically during the summer. Use it, or lose it! So get to the library, check out some books and get the kids reading, to you, to their siblings and to themselves!
What are you doing to keep your kids busy this summer?
Christy Laverty is a mother and an editor for a Toronto all news radio station. She also does freelance writing for several parenting magazines. Visit Christy’s blog where she updates the trials, tribulations, and fun of being mom of two beautiful girls.