Summer is (almost) here!
Summer, the end of school! Hooray? Maggie graduated preschool and next year will get to be a big Kindergartner! She had to dress up as something she wanted to be when she grew up. I told her she could be anything she wanted to be, but I wasn't going to buy a costume ("I want to be Elsa when I grow up!") so she settled on being a teacher. Good choice.
Next up it was Jake's birthday--the big 8. It's great to be eight! He had an awesome party. Lots of kids and presents.
We then had a family party on his actual birthday. Cake for the normal people, and snickerdoodles for Jake because he hates cake (whaaaa?).
I have mentioned in the previous post about how all the social media these days makes you feel like an inadequate parent. If you aren't constantly making elaborate crafts, doing educational activities or playing homemade games with your kids then you are one of the worst mothers out there. Or at least an extreme underachiever. I fall into that category. Now don't get me wrong, I am not lazy, it's just that I have tried all these things and 99.99% of them are "fails." Ever made a house/rocket/fort out of a huge cardboard box? Done--ripped apart into 1,000 pieces after 30 minutes. Ever done sock rainbow bubbles? Done--choking child and ruined after 30 seconds (see previous post). Ever filled your kids room with balloons on their birthday? Done--millions of tiny rubber scraps you try to pick up before the dog eats them. I could go on and on--you get the point. I am only saying this because I recently found an article, written by a mom, who I would think I would be BESTIES with if I ever met her in real life. Please read and enjoy...
I imagine when my mother was raising a family back in the '80s, in a world sans Pinterest and mommy blogs, she didn't know what other moms did with their kids during the summer if they didn't live on our block. But I'm parenting in an entirely different era where I'm bombarded on a daily basis with messages via social networks about what I should and shouldn't be doing with my kids.
When I was a new parent, I bought into everything, hook, line and sinker. But after seven years of being a circus monkey in order to make summers magical for my children, I've thrown in the towel. While you may hear other mothers announce their excitement to have the kids home all day, every day — I'm keeping it real.
I'm scared. Really scared. So I'm taking the pressure off myself. I had a bucket list compiled from ideas found on mommy blogs around the Internet, written by women who probably make their own toothpaste and never feed their family processed foods, and I'm doing a rewrite. My new goal for summer break? Survive.
Make ice cream in a baggie.
1. Buy ice cream.
Watch the sunrise and bring a picnic breakfast!
2. Feed the kids breakfast as often as possible. We've already witnessed the sunrise every morning for the first few years of their lives.
Sleep outside on the trampoline together!
3. Let the kids sleep outside on the trampoline ... without me.
Got an old chair lying around? Give the kids a permanent marker and let them go to town on it!
4. Draw with them ... on paper.
Make a fruit pizza! Let kids help you with the toppings like strawberries and blueberries!
5. Order pizza.
Have a yard sale and let the kids help!
6. Have a yard sale when the kids aren't there, because most of what we sell is their old junk that they would never willingly part with.
Play games, like hide-and-seek!
7. Play hide-and-seek, and find a really good hiding spot to enjoy some peace and quiet for as long as possible. Bring a good book and a Diet Coke into said hiding spot.
Host a themed play date, like a Pirate Play Date, and provide inexpensive eye patches, pirate hats out of newspaper, and Goldfish Crackers as "sea food."
8. Invite some kids over to play. Have Goldfish Crackers as a snack.
Make a carwash for the kids' bicycles using PVC pipe, pool noodles and your imagination!
9. Let the kids play with the hose.
Write sight words on diving sticks and call out a word. See who can dive into the pool and find that word first!
10. Take the kids swimming.
Now that the pressure is off, bring on the summer!
Whoever you are, I love you! This will be my bucket list for summer. Bring it on!