You love your kids, but sometimes they can be a bit much. This is never more true than during the summer months, when they’ll be around for every hour of the day. Without school to occupy their time, they’ll constantly be in your way. Get through summer without pulling out your hair by using the following tips.
Create A Routine
Having a routine for both you and your kids is a great way to maintain order and offer a sense of stability. Since they don’t have to wake up early for school, kids might think they can sleep and lounge around all day. Instead, prioritize sleep by creating a wind-down routine to lower the kids’ energy levels and prepare them for bed. Try to tuck them in at least a couple hours before midnight so you have enough time to sleep yourself.
Wake up about an hour before the kids do so you can have some alone time. This is the perfect time for reading a good book, drinking your cup of coffee, or sneaking in a few chores. As for the rest of the day, have set meal times for your kids, and if you’re really feeling ambitious, have set activity times as well, such as reading time or coloring time.
With the whole family home, there’s no reason you should have to do all the chores yourself. Involve everyone by assigning each child their own list of chores. Of course, your children probably won’t want to do chores voluntarily, so you’ll want to make things a little more fun. Create a game by assigning kids XP (experience points) for each chore they do, much like a role playing game. You can also award whoever has the most points each week with a prize.
Depending on their ages, your kids can do varying chores. For example, kids under three can put away their toys, clothes, and books, while kids four to five can make their beds, pick weeds out of the garden, and help prepare meals. Older kids can do things like make their bed, vacuum their rooms, wash the dishes, or take pets for a walk.
Don't Skip Essential Maintenance Tasks
Summer is always the busiest season, whether you’re driving the kids to yet another softball practice or heading out on your annual family vacation. Don’t let yourself get caught up in the craziness of it all and forget to perform essential maintenance tasks. For example, you should always schedule a professional to come by and check out your HVAC system, as nothing is worse than a broken AC in the midst of summer heat. To save a few bucks, they might even recommend you to install a ductless heat pump for better efficiency and air flow.
Other essential maintenance tasks to consider include:
- Changing your air, water, and refrigerator filters.
- Reversing the fans in your home so they blow air down.
- Checking your yard for hazards, including broken fence pieces or a splintered deck.
The important thing about summer is not to overwhelm yourself. Take time to enjoy having your kids available 24/7, as you’ll miss them again when the school year returns.