5 Unexpected Ways To Have an Awesome Summer

Posted by on Jun 24, 2015 in Life, Our Blog, Simple Choice Agency | Comments Off on 5 Unexpected Ways To Have an Awesome Summer

Summer Here we finally are again.  SUMMER!!  For youths, and teens:  Endless days of boredom that you spent all the months of the year looking forward to.  For parents:  A much needed break from homework, strict bedtimes, after school activities and the constant juggling of it all.

So how do you make this summer different?  

In today’s world with the assistance of our technology you can literally spend your entire summer planning your summer.  There are countless apps, websites, blog pages, pinterest ideas, etc. to “assist” us in being great parents and to provide our kids with a memorable summer.  Here is the problem:  IT IS TOO MUCH.

Remember a long time ago when you went to the store to buy cereal?  There was sweetened and unsweetened cereal and we survived fine. Now, we have two full aisles top to bottom of cereal choices.  I know that might seem like a silly comparison, but that reflects why we cannot possibly live up to the standards of providing our kids with the “perfect” summer experience. There are too many choices, and we become overwhelmed ourselves.  Think about it?  With everything we have available now, if we don’t build our summer off of Pinterest or make it bigger and better than everyone else,  we must be failing as a parent, right?  Wrong.  Do just the opposite.

Use these practical tips and I bet you will be pleasantly surprised at the memories of your summer.

1. Do Less.  Seriously, we cannot do everything. Every Pinterest idea, craft, exploration nature walk, etc.  We cannot do it all. so PICK a few things, and follow through with those things.  Ideas can include, pick a project at home and help them do it, teach them to cook and make a meal,  a nature walk, a picnic, or planning a neighborhood kickball game, visit the local farmers market,  or family fun night, obviously the ideas are endless.

2. Get their buy in.  But limit the choices.  Think about it, you cannot send them out to the internet, magazine or pinterest to look at the thousands of summer activities and expect them to not get overwhelmed just like we do. Do some research, give some general ideas (no more than 10) and let them pick from there.  Make sure they are things you can follow through on with them.

3. Do something meaningful.  This will be the one most will grumble at, but has the opportunity to provide a great experience.  There are several ways a youth or teen can volunteer in their local community.  They can spend a day at the local food pantry, or arrange to visit a nursing home, or sell lemonade and donate the money or thousands of other ideas. Encourage them to think about something they really like.   If you can’t find local things in your community, then subscribe  to  https://www.dosomething.org/  there is every kind of opportunity and many can be done right from home.

4. Limit social media, Netflix, television, computer.  I know, I know, we were okay until we got here.  Obviously, this is a big one.  Probably, depending on the age of your kids, THE BIGGEST one.  Come to a compromise.  Social media has become our babysitter and their reality.  Recommend time restraints.social_media_strategy111  They will HATE it in the beginning, but trust me; as a youth volunteer leader, I have watched and heard countless students say   “I am so glad we can’t have our phones” when we go away to camp.  Even the kids know it is hurting them.


5. Try to manage a schedule for them.  it doesn’t have to be written out in stone, but you need a basic plan so everyone knows what to expect.  That may seem like work for you and stressful.  But it truly will help them with time management over the summer which in turn will help you from hearing “I’m bored”.

In summary, summer should be a time for enjoyment, relaxed rules, less stress and a time we all look forward to and enjoy.  Taking the time to upfront to follow these few simple steps,  will help provide for a more meaningful experience for everyone