My summer memories include library books, sunbaked mudpies, badminton games, and sips from the water hose. Sunny, school-free days melt away as quickly as a popsicle in July, but treasured memories linger a lifetime.
Let’s create a bucket list of stress-free summer fun and then map out our days to create warm memories and valuable experiences for the children we love. Choose only the ideas you deem easy and adapt them to fit your family. Parents need to enjoy summer, too.
God created seasons and ordained one to close when another begins (Ecclesiastes 3:1). The summer season provides unique freedom and fun other seasons deny. Consider the following ways to squeeze all the goodness from the next three months.
Summer’s Bucket List: Stress-free Ways to Plan Value-Filled Days for Your Family @jeanniewaters44 #Summer #FamilyTweet
10 Stress-Free Ways to Plan Value-Filled Summer Days for Your Family
1. First, ask God to fill your bucket.
Before we can model a Christ-centered life for children, we need Him to fill our hearts with His Spirit. Set aside time to seek God’s guidance as the school year ends and ask for His wisdom daily as you study His Word.
For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.Proverbs 2:6 ESV
2. Create a bucket list of goals after you consider these questions:
- What do I want my children to remember about this summer?
- Which Christ-like qualities do I want to model for my children and help them develop?
- As parents, how can we build family unity?
- Which Bible verses should we memorize?
- How can I lead my children to consider the needs of others?
- How can I create opportunities children will view as more fun than electronic devices?
3. Consider your child’s unique needs, qualities, and interests.
- Research camps and classes, collect library books, and interview experts to encourage a current interest.
- Spark creative expression with a summer gift of art supplies or a journal.
- Arrange playdates or teen time with friends and plan simple joint family cookouts or outdoor movie nights.
4. Consider these tips for success.
- Practice flexibility, forgive quickly, and hold your plans loosely. Chill-out days are sometimes the most valuable.
- Avoid overscheduling and allow time for children to entertain themselves. Imaginative play and the glee of running free in God’s creation help produce healthy minds and bodies.
- Consider the older children’s need for peer time but involve them in family activities. They can take photos, lead games, and read to younger siblings. Share an extra dessert with them after “the littles” go to bed.
- Create an album of treasured memories from exciting ventures and everyday backyard play.
- Pray without ceasing and listen as God directs your steps.
5. Love your neighbor.
- Share Scripture with your family to instill a desire to serve others. (Galatians 6:10, Mark 12:31)
- Join a church mission project or serve a meal at a Ronald McDonald House or homeless shelter.
- Plant seeds in late spring and share flowers with a neighbor mid-summer.
6. Tour your own town.
- Visit museums, parks, and historical sites. Locate the tallest building, bridges, and statues. Explore a peach packing plant, a strawberry farm, botanical gardens, or a planetarium.
- Enjoy a mini golf facility or ice cream shop (extra sprinkles please).
7. Preview next year’s school curriculum and prepare your children for academic success by introducing topics in interesting ways.
- Collect library books or explore locations of interest related to next year’s science, history, and geography topics. Read the biography of a famous missionary or explorer.
- Practice telling time, counting money, or using math facts in fun ways. Draw geometric shapes with sidewalk chalk and measure them.
- Include new vocabulary in mealtime conversations.
- Choose reading spots like a hammock, indoor tent, or a quilt under a shade tree. Silent reading or looking at picture books gives mom a break and allows individual reading pleasure. Afternoon read-alouds stimulate imagination and build the language of literature into young minds. Older children can complete summer reading assignments while the house is quieter.
8. Plan a weekly family activity.
- Share a picnic beside a river or waterfall. Try a nature scavenger hunt list and spread a blanket for cloud gazing.
- Design an obstacle course or play a game. Croquet anyone?
- Play “Twenty Questions” to guess the location of an upcoming family excursion.
9. Plan cooperative treasure hunts.
- Give children characters or locations to find in their Bible story books or Bibles.
- Find five toys or household items to donate to a charity.
- Bury treasure in the backyard and provide written clues. Example treasures include movie tickets, a coupon for extra scoops of ice cream, or a compass and snack for the next family hike.
10. Laugh often.
Relax and laugh often. “A joyful heart is good medicine” (Proverbs 17:22 ESV).
Enjoy planning and praying over your summer bucket list for the children you love. We look forward to reading your ideas in the comments!
10 Ways to Plan Value-Filled Days This Summer @Jeanniewaters44 #Family #ParentsTweet