In just a few short days Labor Day will upon us and bring with it the (sad) unofficial end to summer. In exactly one week from today the pressures of back-to-school, including new teachers, new friends and homework along with hectic schedules of kids’ activities will once again begin in our household.
The kidlets are enjoying their last few days of summer by jamming in as much carefree fun time as possible – hanging with friends, playing sports, swimming and sleeping in!
I’m also getting ready by taking a few deep breaths to help find my “happy place” before the insanity of the school year begins. Part of that is taking a look back at all the fun and adventures we had as a family this summer.
Here are a few of my favorite moments and things I learned:
Family movie night is much more fun when it’s and backyard movie party!
There’s nothing like seeing a movie up on a big screen and watching movies in the backyard is kinda like having your own personal drive in. We stepped up our backyard movie nights by starting the movie off with some old drive-in trailers (animated & live action, they are a hoot!) and freshly popped popcorn served in “old school” movie theater containers. So far this summer we’ve seen “Lilo & Stitch,” “The Muppet Movie,” “Star Wars” and “The Croods.” This weekend we’re watching “The Wizard of Oz.”
Go and see lots of things
This year we tried something new. Instead of taking one big vacation we decided to spread out our fun by doing lots of little trips. We spent five days in Texas, taking the kidlets to their first-ever water park Schlitterbahn, took some day trips to Jeninkinson’s Boardwalk in Pt. Pleasant Beach, NJ; LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Westchester and Liberty Science Center.
Slather yourself in sunscreen…. EVERYWHERE
Unfortunately, I learned this one the hard way. We just got back from five days at the Jersey Shore and I thought I did a good job applying sunscreen to myself. Somehow I missed my earlobes and lower lip. Sunburn on these body parts is incredibly painful and now that they are starting to peel, I look like one big snake shedding its skin!
Reading is FUNdamental
Reading is a great way to prevent kids from “summer slide” and keeping their brains working. Books can take them to new places and even inspire them to have some adventures of their own! My kidlets joined our local library’s reading club and had a blast reading enough books to earn an invite to a summer book party. They had lots of favorite books this summer and even discovered the joys of comic books.
Buy your #BTS items as soon as they go on sale in stores.
Last year I waited until mid-August to buy my kidlet’s school supplies. By the time we got there, the backpacks and lunch boxes – the two most important parts of any kid’s back-to-school supply haul – had been seriously picked over and only the duds were left. This year we bought our supplies the first weekend our local big box retailer had them available and even then the aisles had been trashed a bit (you know what I’m talking about), but my kidlets managed to get items with the characters they really wanted.
Crafting with Kids is Fun
Crafting is great way to spend some quality time with kids on both rainy or sunny days. My kidlets created their own stuffed animals, made masterpieces with dish soap paint and got ready for back to school with a colorful pizza box artbox storage craft.
A green garden will warm your heart during the winter months
We grew an extensive herb garden this year. Fresh herbs have been wonderful accents to all the meals we’ve enjoyed this summer –from basil on pizza to cilantro/parsley in summer sauces to dill in salads and with fish. Throughout the summer I’ve harvested the excess and dried them to create my own herb blend use during the cold and winter months to give me a little taste of summer and sunshine.
Now it’s your turn to share. What was your favorite moment this summer? What did you learn?
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