Many of us now have kiddos that are home for summer and I wanted to suggest that you consider making a summer schedule for your family. I find we all do better with a set routine and it helps me to keep all those balls up in the air (and not crashing down around me.)
I like for the kiddos to know what is expected of them too- especially since mine don’t nap and I still have all my regular responsibilities to the family and the blog to manage.
I didn’t do this myself last summer and lived to regret it- the days really do fly by so fast and instead of enjoying our time together I found I was racing around just like normal trying to get everything in.
So before you sit down you might want to start thinking about things like:
- Errands (and keeping your regular schedule of shopping etc..)
- Weather (it gets so hot in Sacramento I schedule our play time around the weather)
- classes and activities
- Quiet time
- Travel and vacations
- Free activities
- Summer Fun List agenda
I have a three month calendar already set up (this is something I have year round anyway) and that has all the big stuff already detailed out- like summer camp and trips and birthdays and such.
Then I like to fill in a weekly schedule and I include everything for the family. I start by penciling in my commitments (any appointments and all the gym classes I usually take) plus anything special like Father’s Day and such. Next I add in important stuff on my husband’s calendar and then the exisiting commitments for the children (dance classes, Girl Scout meetings etc..).
After that I start with the free stuff we would like to do- this week there are free movies in the park so that is one example. I will add in any community events, festivals and such that might be fun that week as well.
After that I break down the days- I plan something fun for them each day- whether it is a playdate at the splash park, visiting the Farmer’s Market, doing a craft, swimming in the pool or sometimes it is just watching a new cartoon together. (I try to plan things around the weather too because it does get so hot- much easier to ride bikes to the park in 80 degree weather then 108 degree weather.)
If there is nothing already set for that day then we can start checking things off our summer fun list. I also try to look at this a week in advance so I can make sure to get everything we need while I am out shopping. (Nothing like planning to make lemonade one afternoon only to find you are out of lemons…)
And of course, the kiddos are on vacation but Mama is not on vacation so I have to make my own to do list of all the housework, cooking, shopping and of course blog work for the day.
I try to schedule these tasks as much as I can- for example cleaning might be limited to 1 hour per day. I can easily spend hours cleaning because I am one of those people that just can’t sit still with dirty dishes in the sink. So I have a little kitchen timer and I set that and challenge myself to get as much done as I can and once that timer dings- I have to move on to the next thing. The girls help me a bit and during my cleaning hour that is also their time to get all their chores done.
Some people like assigning themes to each day for summer schedules- that might be something that works for you. An example would be Crafty Monday where you plan a craft project, Tasty Tuesday where the kiddos help out in the kitchen, Wet Wednesday where you set up some sort of water based activity and so on.
And educational stuff just has to be a priority too. My little Kindergartener struggled with learning to read last year and she wants to know how so badly it is a real priority for me to spend time working with her this summer. That kind of stuff is the first to go on a hectic day so I think setting a schedule really helps to make sure you can fit in the things that are a priority for your family. (My little girl gets so upset when her big sister has work to do and she doesn’t so I print out batches of little worksheets and activities to keep her busy with her own “homework”.)
So here is a little sample of what one of our days might look like:
7am: Mama is up and checking email
8am: Girls are up (usually one of them is up earlier and curled up next to me watching cartoons until the other one gets out of bed). Breakfast time.
8:30-10:30: Playtime for the kiddos. They like to play super heroes, sometimes this is playing outside, sometimes they get into coloring or playdoh, doll houses etc… whatever it is they entertain each other (pretty much) and Mama has to get her work done.
10:30-12:00: This is errand time or time for activities together.
12:00-1:00: My husband comes home for lunch and spends time with the girls so I can get some work done.
1:00-2:00: Clean up, clean up, everybody clean up. This is when I set a timer and we all get as much done as we can. I might get something for dinner started, get as much laundry in as possible, the girls do chores and sometimes help me out with the cleaning.
2:00-3:30: More time for playing or swimming or whatever the day holds.
3:30-4:30: Quiet time. I am a firm believer that a little time for peace and quiet is important so kids aren’t always racing from one thing to the next. Plus they need to learn to entertain themselves from time to time. They each go to their rooms, again I set a timer for 1 hour and they are in charge of entertaining themselves.
4:30-6:00: Getting dinner ready, Daddy is home and usually the kiddos get to watch cartoons or fight it out for the iPad 😉 until dinner is on the table.
6:00-7:00: Bathtime and more playing with Daddy so Mommy can work.
7:00-7:30: Reading and writing practice with Mommy.
7:30: I create piles throughout the day at the bottom of the steps of all the stuff that needs to get put away. Each child has to find her things and get it put away or I will put it all in the Goodwill bin (and I really will). Bedtime routine and books and lights out for the kiddos at 8:30 pm.
So that is just a rough schedule and obviously some days will be much different when we have camp and such but overall I try to stick to the same things- play time, some sort of exercise, any chores and errands, a little quiet time etc…
You might consider setting up a schedule for your family this summer too. In my example I work from home so I know that allows me a lot more flexibility then two working families might have. But I think it is still nice to set something up regardless because there are only 12 weekends to go until Labor Day and that is one less summer you have with your children!
AND to help you with this task, I found a bunch of cute free printable calenders below:
Another cute and simple printable from Tom Kat Studio- this is a free printable weekly schedule.
Here is a fun rainbow schedule from Studying the Bible.
And one more option for you from From Mizzou to Missoula.
Daily schedule from These Delightful Hands.
Another very cute daily planner from Life Made Lovely.
I hope this helps you to get your summer schedule together to make the most of the time you have!
This is part of the 30 days to a Funner Summer series.
You can catch up with the entire series by click below:
- Day 1: Get Organized! How to organize children’s activity bags.
- Day 2: End of Year Surprises for Children
- Day 3: Strawberry Lemon Slushie Recipe
- Day 4: Homemade Hamburger Seasoning to AMP up your burgers
- Day 5: How to make Giant Bubble Solution
- Day 6: How to Save Money on Road Trips