Friday, July 2, 2010

[Guest Post] Summer Survival Guide: Keeping Kids Busy On A Budget

bubbles I look forward to spending the summer months with my children because during that time we get to enjoy activities that we neglect during the school year. I won't pretend to have you think that my children are always on their best behavior. Nor will I lead you to believe that things don't get chaotic around here.

My children run up and down the hallway screaming and stomping several times a day. And since the start of the summer they've already broken a vase that I've had for close to ten years. But having been a mother, going on seventeen years, I'll share one or two tricks that I've learned about making it through summer break with your sanity intact.

A few weeks before the start of the summer break, I scour the local newspapers, magazines and websites looking for FREE summer activities for kids. Many bowling alleys have specific days that are FREE or discounted during the summer.  Movie theaters have been known for offering a FREE or discounted viewing day during summer months as well.

Another great summer activity are how-to clinics which are Free and usually offered on Saturday mornings. As I find each of these activities, I save them in my eCalendar and set a weekly reminder for my self. This makes it easy to see what activities are available too you on any given day.  Now when I sit down to make my weekly plan all of the leg work is already done. All I have left to do is decide where we will go for any given week.

Keeping the kids cooped up in the house all day will drive you nuts and them as well. I'll admit that it takes a little effort to get everyone ready to go but it's always worth it when they come home pooped. Having a weekly written plan of your activities is going to be a valuable tool. Knowing where you’re going allows you to plan ahead for easy dinner ideas. You won't want to cook dinner after being out all day, nor will you want to eat out several times a week. Try to stick with freezer meals, crock pot dinners and no cook meals during the summer months.

If you are new to planning out your summer activities and have no idea where to start I've compiled a list of suggestions.

-Movie theaters
-Pool/splash pad/beach
-Kid friendly restaurants w/play area
-Local park
-Water day in the back yard
-Craft store workshops
-Home Improvement Center workshops
-Vacation Bible School / Summer camp

These are just a few of the places to begin looking in order to piece together a summer fun activity list. Scheduling weekly activities for the children is a win-win situation for everyone. They get to burn off energy and I am able to get some blogging done.

What do you do to keep your children busy during the summer months? I'm always looking for fresh ideas.

apwSaidah is my very first guest blogger during the Summer Essentials event.  We’ve enjoyed great conversations twitter, so I was thrilled when she offered to write a guest post for me. Through her blog, A Proverbs Wife, she shares her journey in modeling herself after Proverbs 31:10-31.  She writes about how scripture molds her into being a better Christian, wife, and mother.  You’re sure to be inspired by reading her blog. She also shares some really great coupons and bargains there.

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  1. Thank you so much for the great ideas. It can get pretty expensive engaging in summer activities... and I also like breaking up the day I spend with my 3 children by doing fun outings. It really makes the summer much more enjoyable!

  2. It can get expensive especially with multiple activities of varying costs. Not to mention the time involved in running t multiple outings. That's one of the big reasons why I look for inexpensive options that all of the kids can enjoy.

  3. Awesome post. My kids are back to school now but I wish I would have seen this before lol. I do have some great ideas for next summer now though. I always have such a hard time keeping my kids busy during the summer.



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