Many of us are nostalgic for the summer days of our youth but summer gets a bit more complicated when you become a parent. Between ever shifting schedules, busy social calendars, sleepovers, camps and the days when the kids are home in between, parents have a lot on their plates and living isn’t always easy. However, with a little preparation and organization, you can relieve some of the summer stress and enjoy some more restful moments.
Read on for some of our tips on how to plan now for a stress-free summer with your family.
Create a Calendar: Start updating your family calendar for the summer months so you can capture all activities that you and your children will participate in including camp, playdates and travel. This way you will know what is coming up and what weeks or days you still have to fill up. Color coding the calendar by activity or child makes it easy to quickly reference commitments.
Make a Date: Plan outings and get togethers for those free days and weekends of summer to help you stay in touch with friends and family. And set aside time for some of the activities that are unique to summer such as days at the pool, leisurely BBQs outside, running through sprinklers and catching fireflies in mason jars. With services such as Amazon Prime and grocery delivery apps, we find it easy to stay on top of prep by creating an alert in our phone calendar a few days before a planned activity to stock up on necessary supplies.
Banish Boredom: When you come up with fun activities, write them out on index cards and pin them next to the family calendar. That way when the “I’m bored“s start (it’s inevitable, right?), you already have a list of ideas ready to go. Letting kids choose the activity too makes them part of the process as well!
Keep Learning: Look for activities that will keep your children engaged and learning about the world around them. Planting a small garden is a favorite in our house because you can plant the seeds together when school lets out, task your children with watering them every day and then reap the benefits and have a fun cooking project come August when the plants are fully grown.
Check Your Supplies: Summer means days with lots of sun and bugs, so start stocking up now on sunscreen and bug repellant and check your first-aid kit to see what needs to be replenished. Grab extras to make “to go” packs that can be popped into bags on the way out of the house in the morning. That way everyone is covered no matter who is taking care of the kids that day.
If you are looking for more ideas on getting organized for summer, check out our blog post, Simple Steps to Get Ridiculously Organized for a Stress-Free Summer, posted on What Moms Love.