The other day a friend of mine was telling me that if she was “in charge” she would only have it rain at night. We were just having a fun, silly conversation but it got me thinking. If I was in charge, I would let everyone have a summer vacation. Adults included! While that is logistically impossible, it is fun to think about. My adult summer break would look a bit different from my childhood and teen summers. Instead of a two-piece and tan amplifier to lay out by the pool, I would show-up up at 8am to avoid the harmful ultraviolet rays, wearing an incredibly modest swim dress complete with floppy hat, sunglasses, and SPF 250. On rainy days, I would NOT be hanging out ALL DAY at the skating rink, but cleaning out and organizing something in my home or doing some other chore that was long overdue.
We may not get 12 full weeks off like we did when we were in school, but it is fun to have our children available to do fun things with during their summer break. What kinds of things do you have planned for summer? Time on the beach is always a must for us. I have such great childhood memories of the beach from fishing late nights with my cousins on the pier to hunting for seashells in the mornings. In my neighborhood we would all meet up at someone’s house or a designated spot and just do “whatever”. We would invent games, run through sprinklers, and pick and eat wild blackberries until we made ourselves sick. If you had a childhood like that then you know how magical it was. Whether roaming the beach or hanging with friends, spending time outdoors is great for a child’s development as Jan Pierce shares in her feature, Happy Healthy Kids: Eight Reasons to Embrace Outdoor Play.
Living on the coast, we are all too familiar with the regularity of afternoon thunderstorms that can literally dampen plans for outdoor play. Fortunately, we live in an area that has not only a plethora of outdoor activities, but plenty of indoor fun as well. You can find a large variety of suggestions in this month’s Summer Fun Guide, where we have scoured the area to find options for hiking trails, amusement parks, museums, watersports and more. You will find plenty to keep you busy all summer long. Looking for even more? Don’t forget to check out the Family Calendar too!
While you have your calendar out, be sure to make time for Dad. Fathers and other male role-models play such an important part in our kids’ lives and they deserve to be celebrated. When our girls were little, they loved making gifts for Brad. One of his most favorite possessions is a platter with handprint hamburgers and “King of the Grill” painted on it. They all “signed” the back of it. If you are searching for ideas to acknowledge the important men in your childrens’ lives, check out 10 Fun and Creative Ways to Celebrate Dad, by Rebecca Hastings.
As we all welcome the much needed break from school-year routines, I hope everyone dedicates plenty of time to family fun and memory making. Here’s to a safe and happy summer!