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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Scheduling Summer?

            I know its not quite summer yet, but I'm in full preparation mode! I work two days out of the home and this summer we are having a nanny at our home watch the kids so they don't have to go to daycare. They are really excited about this since it means being able to play with their neighbor friends. As I'm putting together a bunch of resources for her to help things go more smoothly I though I would share some of them with you. My favorite being our schedule.  Whether I'm home or not, my kids need structure! I need structure. It keeps me sane! ;)

Here's why having a schedule for the summer is such a great idea:
  • They aren't constantly asking, "what are we going to do next". I didn't realize how much having even a loose schedule could cut down on the frequent nagging about  our daily routine. 
  • A schedule gives them some security. They know what the routine is and this cuts down on the cuing that I have to do throughout the day. They know what to expect. 
  • The schedule becomes the "bad guy", meaning, we can blame the schedule for having to do chores, not mom! ;) 
  • The schedule gives us freedom! 

     The great thing about the schedule is if you involve the kids in the process they become invested in the outplay of it. My kids know that during some of the play time scheduled we might need to run errands or will throw in a trip to the park.

     I'm tellin ya, this thing is so great that we use it as a basic guide for our day on spring break and Christmas vacation. Things go much more smoothly when we follow this. It takes one day of, "I think we can just wing it", before I realize the error of my ways~the kids get squirrelly, we have more discipline issues and there are more complaints about doing chores. Trust me, the schedule is your friend! 

     Here's a copy of our schedule for the nanny {on the days I'm off we will add a few trips in here or there}:

     This is just a basic schedule. You could get far more in depth but its not necessary. A basic outline like this works wonders for your kids {and for mom!} On a near future post I will share with you what summer chores look like.

     Coming up I will also have some ideas that I've compiled {with the help of my kids} of fun things to do around the house this summer that don't cost money. Having these ideas as a resource is great for when they inevitably say, "mom I'm bored!". I had to put this together for myself because for some reason all I can think to suggest when they say they're bored is to assign chores. I suppose I'd have one tidy house if I stuck to this but I want summer to be fun for them. You're only a kid once!

          {For Nana, note the beautiful new front tooth just constructed by the dentist this afternoon!}

     I would also suggest sitting down with your kids and putting together a list of things you want to accomplish or places you want to go this summer. Our list includes things like regular trips to the library, going to a new zoo in the area, trips to Nana's, and a local fair. Having a plan, even for fun, will make the fun, fun! {That crazy sentence makes sense in my head, hopefully it does in yours too!}

     Enjoy your summer, I know we will!


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