Friday, June 11, 2010

My strategies for surviving summer

The kids and I hang out together all summer.  It's been this way forever and I LOVE it.  I do complain sometimes but for the most part I truly enjoy it.  This summer we are definitely on a budget and we have been working hard to fill our time and our brains while not emptying our wallets. 

But this blog post is about surviving summer.
There are times when we all get a bit frustrated with each other...normal things...things that you probably have happening at your house.
-the kids not listening to me
-the kids not listening to each other
-the going in and out, in and out all day long and the slamming of the door each and every time
-making 3+ square meals a day plus snacks
-wet clothes and towels always left on the floor
-disagreeing about what to watch on TV
-what we should do today
-who can come over and play
and on and on and on...

I have gotten a lot of advice on how to keep kids busy, entertained and smart during summer and over the years I think I have gotten good but it's always a challenge. 

My solution...Lists  I spend a lot of time thinking up lists.  Lists for each kiddo.  The lists consist on chores, study time, reading time, nighttime-getting ready for bed stuff (the bain of my existence), and having fun.  The goal in this is to keep Mommy (me) sane.  No one wants a crazy mom...lists make mommy happy and when mom is happy, everyone is happy. 
This year I started a new reward program.  The kids' school has a Paws for Applause program and decided that I would start the same kind of thing at home.  The thought being that the more good behavior will be forthcoming if I reward it...sounds good right?  In theory, yes but I will let you know come the end of summer. 

Another great theory I heard from a friend is the "I'm bored" list which I still need to's a great idea.
It works like this...
There are 2 lists.  One is a list of ideas that the kiddos can look at when they are bored and need something FUN to do.  The 2nd is for when they actually come up to me and say the words "I'm bored".  The list contains stuff that isn't much fun to cleaning the bathrooms, cleaning your room, weeding, etc, etc.  I really dislike those 2 mom used to say that only boring people get bored...hated it!

So far things have been going great but as I said, I will let you know come August 17th!

How do you survive summer?  More theories are always a good thing.  

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