"Sanity In The Summer - Is It Possible?" by
Parents across the country are gearing up for the inevitable... the last
day of school. I personally am looking forward to a much-needed break
from the long drive to and from school each day, packing lunches,
getting stains out of school uniforms, and the nickel-and-diming of
school fundraisers. Of course, I always am looking forward to the last
day of school by this time each spring.
But without a doubt, it'll happen no later than July 1st... When my
lovely children are ripping out each other's hair, and I'm pulling out
my own quickly-multiplying gray hairs, I'll be counting down the days
until school begins once again.
It's not that I don't love my children. I adore them! But they bore
easily. And when they are bored, they happen to find my bulging eyes and
red face and loud voice rather amusing. They get joy out of making each
other say "Ouch!" or being chased out of their sibling's bedroom. They
laugh hysterically while they run back & forth through the living room,
causing the dog to bark frantically while I'm trying to handle an
I'm sure there are many of you out there nodding your heads, envisioning
your little angels in a few short weeks when they've already
methodically played with every toy in their bedroom and left them in the
most strategic places - yes, *those* places, where you will either step
on them, spraining your ankle, or they will end up in the washing
machine. Klunk, klank, klink......thud. Cashing in their saved-up
allowances to buy a replacement washing machine should keep them busy
for a while, right?
So what can we do to survive the boredom blues that our children are
sure to experience this summer? Here are a few helpful ideas and
resources that I'll be resorting to soon enough. I hope this helps you
* Check local churches for Vacation Bible Schools. These usually last
1-2 weeks, just a few hours each day, and are very reasonably priced. In
addition to learning about religion and good values, kids will do
crafts, play games, sing songs, and make new friends.
* Call your local parks and recreation department to get a schedule of
summer classes and trips. Go on nature hikes and/or fly kites.
* Take the dog to a dog park.
* Even if you have a pool and/or a playscape in your yard, opt for a
public pool or playground in hopes of your children making new friends.
Who knows? You just might make some new friends too - other local
* Go to local cultural events, such as fairs and festivals, art museums,
zoos, science centers, etc.
* Visit your library and check their calendar for summer activities,
most of which are usually free. While you're their, check and see if
they have an "adopt a shelf" program. Your kids, with your help, can
adopt a bookshelf that they would be responsible for over the summer,
keeping it neat and organized.
* Try these websites for ideas:
* Now would be a great time to check out those music or dance lessons
that your child has been asking about all school year.
* Many shopping malls have free kids shows and activities, and many book
stores have weekly story hours and/or craft times.
* If you can find one close enough to drive to, go to a drive-in for a
double feature on a summer evening. Visit DriveInMovie.com for a list of
* On really hot days, or really rainy days, get out of the house and
enjoy the cool comfort of a matinee at the movie theater.
* Break out the home movies from your childhood, and let your kids laugh
at your poor fashion and funky hairstyles.
As a last resort, I plan to send my kids into their bedrooms with the
mission of cleaning out under their beds. That should occupy them for a
few days at least!
|About The Author
Valerie Zilinsky is a
mother of two and webmaster of RaisingOurKids.com the Internet destination for
parents to reach out to each other regarding gender-specific
parenting issues. Made up of RaisingADaughter.com and
RaisingASon.com, the sites provide articles on every stage of
childhood as well as an active community area. Visit
RaisingOurKids.com for more support on showing your
kids that you love them everyday.