“There is still a pattern to the summers which I hope will never change,
A lovely kaleidoscope of family and friends coming and going.” — Madeleine L’Engle
I’ve always been an autumn girl, but summer is kinda becoming my favorite. Soft slow mornings while the kids sleep in. Little on the schedule but afternoons at the pool, trips to spend time with family and occasional cookouts with friends. I love the simple rhythm that we fall into. Especially those early days when the novelty of playing at home all day is fresh, and everyone is getting along. Waking with each morning, excited for what to play next. Sure there’s still work and chores to be done, but everything is simpler without the pressure of school and places to be.
One of my very favorite traditions I’ve been doing ever since the kids were little are our summer lists. I feel like summer can pass by so quickly in a blur of not really getting to any of our plans, and so we make summer lists of things each kid is hoping to accomplish. On the last day of school, we celebrate with slurpees or ice cream and then gather around the table with posterboard and markers. We have 3 categories : Places to Go, People to See and Things to Do. We never actually do all of these things, but it helps to have lots of options when we have a free day to play or weekend to have people over. Entries are anywhere from the extravagant (New York City) to the mundane (Clean the Playhouse). I love seeing what they come up with each year.
A few other tips that have made our summertime a little easier :
+ the kids plan, make and clean up from lunch every day.
+ house rule : do what you have to before you do what you want to. this means getting up, dressed, breakfast, and chores before play.
+ same screen time for all. after a few summers of exasperation being constantly nagged about screens, we instituted 4-5 pm every day as screen time. after a full day of play, this is a nice down time for all. they are responsible to work out who is using what device, and if that’s a problem, screen time is lost for the day.
What do you love most about summer? Any tips for making those days at home more peaceful? Do share!