School's Out For Summer... How am I going to keep my kids busy?!
The kids are coming! The kids are coming!
As the teachers are putting your precious littles on the bus home to you for the last time this school year (and calculating the fastest route to happy hour), you're sitting at home enjoying the last few moments of piece and quiet when suddenly you go into a panic:
What am I going to do with these kids...all...summer...long?
Taking a little time to decompress can be relaxing and beneficial but it probably won't be long before that idle time is filled with cries of, "I'm bored," and "There's nothing to eat," and my personal favorite, "He started it!" For me, getting out of the house is key. The kids have space, there aren't any toys to fight over and I don't feel the pressure to fold the laundry that's piled up on the couch. Pools and playdates are a given, but here are some things you can do to fill your summer days that will hold their interest AND yours.
1. Go to the library. With your kids in school you may have overlooked a very valuable resource in your local public library. Many of them have summer reading programs and activities specifically designed for students on summer break. Look for ongoing programs like Lego free play or family movie night. Keep it interesting by visiting the different branches in your city and finding a cool new spot for lunch afterwards!
2. Plan a field trip. Did you know that you don't have to be a part of a school group to receive group discounts at museums and zoos? Many places will offer group discounts and guided tours/talks as long as you preregister. So gather up some of your kids' friends and their mamas and head out for a day of learning and adventure.
3. Go for a hike. Most kids have been sitting inside, with limited recess time outdoors for months. Get them outside. Pack a lunch, hike to a good picnic spot and let the kids explore. Chances are, they'll keep themselves busy for hours so take a good book, sit back and relax. State and national parks are great places to find family-friendly trails, but don't overlook your city's greenbelts! When searching for information on new trails we like TRAILS.com and AllTrails.
4. Take a road trip. Summer trips don't have to be intricate, methodically planned, budget-busters. If you have your eye on a cool museum exhibit or summer activity the next town over, hop in the car and go for it! You can spend a night or two in a hotel and explore a little, too. Sometimes just the change in scenery at a new park or pool can help to break up the monotony of your summer days.
How do you keep the kiddos busy during summer vacation? Share your go-to activities below!