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School kids have been waiting for the summer holidays for weeks — if not months! — already, but parents may not be that excited. We've all seen the blog and forum posts in which parents complain that spending lots of time with their children is driving them insane at the speed of light.
Why does this happen? Parents who work all through summer and have no choice but to enroll their children in summer camps, send them off to grandparents, or hire a babysitter may not notice much of a difference in their routine. Families going on summer vacation together will love the change of scenery and new activities, and creating fun won't be hard for them.
Really, it's parents who are lucky enough to be able to take time off work during the school holidays but who aren't going anywhere on vacation that are most likely to face challenges.
Do Fun Stuff This Summer!
Families in this situation are at risk of spending too much time indoors, and arguing with each other rather than having fun.
Being at home more often means you'll have bigger messes to deal with, leading to nagging and then unhappy kids. There might be more cooking, more cleaning, more screen time... and there you have it: cabin fever and a negative cycle that turns your summer holidays into a nightmare. Thankfully, this cycle isn't that hard to break. All you need to do is commit to having fun this summer.
- Why not start the school holidays by making a summer fun list together? Brainstorm as a family, and write everything that's said down on a huge piece of paper.
- Invite your kids' friends or cousins for sleepover parties.
- Make a time capsule with summer fun things (badminton, balloons, yard twister, smoothie recipes...) and bury it for next year. When you dig it up, replace it with another one. You'll have something to look forward to every year!
- Spend lots of time at the local pool. sign any kids who can't swim yet up for classes.
- Spray each other with water guns.
- Camp out in the yard, or elsewhere.
- Go for a picnic.
- See local sights you haven't gone to before, then write reviews and put them online.
- Take your kids fishing.
- Do crafting outside.
- Cool off in air-conditioned spaces like shopping malls, cinemas, local aquariums, or whatever else you can think of.
- Find free activities for kids and see if they are any good.
- Take your kids on a "ghost hunt" at a local forest or park, or do one at home.
- Eat ice cream. Make healthy home-made ones.