Summer Holidays Specials
Oh, the glorious days of summer holidays, with balmy mornings perfect for biking down to the park, hot afternoons spent cooling off by the pool and idyllic evenings of barbecues and catching fireflies. At least, that’s how we parents may like to think of summer. Unfortunately, today’s kids are more likely to be found on the couch glued to various electronic devices than out and about in the sunshine. Take a few simple steps this year to make sure your children have a summer holidays that’s both fun and meaningful.
Spend Time Together
In all the hustle and bustle and multi-tasking of modern life, it’s easy to put off just hanging out with the kids in favor of “getting everything done”. Remember, they won’t be little forever; take a step back and spend a day or an afternoon as a family, whether locally or on a short day trip, letting your kids share in the decision of where to go. Take off for a relaxing day at the beach complete with sand castle building, body surfing and everyone’s favorite picnic foods. Meander through a local museum, take in an amusement park, meet the denizens of the local zoo or set off on a kid-friendly hike. It doesn’t have to be an all-day affair; even taking a few hours with your youngster each day to run through the sprinkler, draw chalk pictures on the driveway or lie on a blanket after dinner and look at the stars can make all the difference in your child’s summer holidays.
Your kids may be clamoring to finally go to overnight summer holidays camp. Stories from friends and siblings often inspire that big step from summer in the neighborhood to the exotic excitement of spending whole weeks with other kids – and no parents – in a lakeside wilderness where hiking, swimming and campfire shenanigans rule. Take a look at some camps with your child and let them get started on the fine summer tradition of sleepaway camp.
There’s a reason summer holidays reading programs have endured for so long: They really do get kids excited about reading. Sign your youngsters up at the local library or take a look at the reading list they’ve brought home at the end of school. Kids’ literature has been booming in recent years, with loads of adults now addicted to young adult books. Just take a look at recent movies; many are adapted from teen best sellers. Library reading programs feature exciting activities, prizes and a chance to get together with friends and classmates during the summer holidays. Read a few of the books yourself and talk with your kids about the characters and plots.
Nurture a Love of Nature
There may be a few more bugs about, but summer holidays is definitely an amazing time to be outside. Go for a nature hike with your youngsters and have fun identifying animal tracks, flowers and wildlife. Local nature centers will be sure to have guided hikes and many feature organized summer camps and activities. Zoos are always a popular option, and many happy memories are made while spending hours in the reptile house or watching the monkeys play.
Immortalize Your Memories
At the end of summer holidays, collect all the photos and create a summer holidays album full of everyone’s favorite memories. You can make it yourself or create a cool photo book on one of the on-line services like Shutterfly.com. From delights to disasters, each year’s summer holidays album will become a treasured part of your family’s history. After, as time passes you’ll find some of the most magical words your child will say are “remember when we… “
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