Add to this the fact that I don’t want to waste this six weeks and see their education come to a complete stop. Like Jennifer Tankersley of ListItPlanIt, “I want to teach my children life skills, responsibility, and self-fulfilment.” But in our house too, “there’s a lot of competition for attention when children are at home: video games, computers, cell phones, television and movies.” Jennifer hits the nail on the head when she describes the school holiday: “It sometimes feels like I am fighting a battle between screen activity, boredom, and ‘mandatory fun’”.
However, there’s no homesteady situation that a ringbinder and a selection of printables can’t improve, I’ve found, which is why, inspired by Jennifer Tankersley’s 100 Days of Summertime, I am putting together a summer planner. This will start in earnest at the end of May, following the day-to-day tips in 100 Days of Summertime, which cover everything from End of School Gifts for Teachers, and Kids’ Chore Charts, to Vacation Packing Lists and Activities to Try. This clearly laid-out and easy-to-follow ebook is full of links to resources and checklists for your summer planner. It works particularly well as a springboard for getting organised and thinking up ways to keep your children entertained, purposeful, maybe even learning something during this long break from school.
Already I have mentioned to the King that it might be nice to have a party in our back yard this year, just to celebrate Summer. Knowing what an antisocial miser I am, the King was rightly astonished and pleased. Having the ListItPlanIt planning tools to-hand and being inspired to think about all the positive aspects of this time of year has made me feel more confident. Confident enough to share with you 5 ways to put together a fledgling and, needless to say, frugal, summer planner.
2. The Activities section is particularly important for me, as it reminds me that I was once (before the holidays began) inspired to try all sorts of new things like making an archery set and going to an airport. In this section I brainstorm everything I fancy doing over the holidays and include reminders as to where I can find further information. LifeYourWay’s 101 Ways toEmbrace Summer and the Confident Mom's 2013 Summer Survival Calendar are especially inspirational, but practical too. I also made a pocket in which to keep coupons for days out.
3. Packing lists are kept in the first section so I can tell Prima and Secundus to get their packing lists from the folder and make a start on that task.4. The section for Meals is going to include a list of 21 recipes (and in which cookery books to find them). I’m hoping to try some new kitchen concoctions this summer. Meal plans will also be included here, and shopping lists.
5. I have identified five (count ‘em) special dates to celebrate (bear in mind, readers, we don’t have Memorial Day, Labor Day, Canada Day or 4th July in Great Britain…), including the Summer Solstice and our Wedding Anniversary, and plans for these will be found in the Events section. Festivals, Family and Food by Diana Carey and Judy Large is a wonderful book if you want to find out more about seasonal celebration. I come from a family that doesn’t tend to celebrate much so just to have an Events tab makes me feel I’m getting somewhere.
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