Wednesday, June 9, 2010

A Simply Simple Summer

Summer. I love Summer. Kind of. I love long days, warm weather, swimming pools and snow-cones. But with that comes long days, sweaty kids, constant sun screen application and stained shirts. That's why I kind of love Summer. Let's admit it, days are long when you have small kids, no school and lots of time. But, I don't want to waste that time. At the end of last Summer, I looked back with regret. What did I do that my kids would really value and remember as they get older? I know we filled our time and had fun, but even I can't remember what we did. This Summer is going to be different. We can't take a vacation like we did last year, so I'm going to have to create memories at home. Here's my plan: Themes.

In the Spring I came up with 14 themes for each week of Summer (minus the week we have Vacation Bible School). Each theme helps me guide our play, our outings, our crafts and even our snacks. It narrows down the 5,000,000+ craft ideas that are out there, our over 200 books we could choose from and all the places we could potentially visit in our city. We're already a couple of weeks into it and I tell you, its' fun. Here are the themes....

1. Animals (May 23 - 29)
2. Art (May 30 - June 5)
3. Sports (June 6 - 12)
- we have VBS and Swim Lessons this week, so no theme-
4. Garden (June 20 - 26)
5. America (June 27 - July 3)
6. Transportation (July 4 - 10)
7. Dance (July 11 - 17)
8. Ocean (July 18 - 24
9. Royalty (July 25 - 31)
10. Farming (Aug. 1 - 7)
11. Bugs and Butterflies (Aug. 8 - 14)
12. Birds (Aug. 15-21)
13. Camping (Aug. 22-28)
14. Cooking (Aug. 29 - Sept. 4)

With each theme, I've compiled a list of crafts, snacks, activities, games and/or outings for us to do throughout the week. Don't get me wrong, I haven't filled our week up. We still have lots of time for free play, rest, play dates, errands and life (remember, I'm trying to keep things simple). But now, each week is memorable. Each day holds something new and gives me a chance to teach something different about our world. I don't have to scramble to come up with things to do and each week my girls can look forward to learning about something new.

I know we're already into Summer, but I'll try to catch you up. For the next few days, I'm going to fill you in on what the past couple of weeks and then I'll move on to what is to come.

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