Welcome back my friends! Summer officially starts in the Richardson Household in a week and I’m getting apprehensive! This is about the time when my respect (already very high to begin with) for teachers doubles..then quadruples. Not only do they spend 7 hours a day, 5 days a week looking after my kids but wait for it..they actual teach them stuff too!
Now I’m up to pitch this inning..the relief pitcher has been trying to warm up while simultaneously catching, batting and covering all the bases. Summer is the double header in 90 degree heat! I have no skill for baseball nor much knowledge of the game so I’m well impressed with myself I even said this much in relationship to the sport in analogies!
So what I’d like to do to take the edge off if you will is to set expectations from day 1.
First, because my Type A personality loves lists-making them, crossing things off them and starting all over again on a fresh piece of paper. I have even been known to write make list on a list and cross it off..yeah I’m that level of crazy. Don’t worry you don’t have to be crazy to be my friend, I’ll train you!
Second, because I want my kids to understand what’s expected. I want them to be excited about fun things we want to do while also understanding their responsibilities to help run things around here. My kids are youngish so I want it be crystal clear..I will repeat myself..but maybe these lists will cut a few times off the million repeats.
So I’m sharing the plan of attack with you in case you’re in the same boat..if you are I hope you smuggled a bottle of red onboard because I forgot mine..said no summer mom EVER..we buy it by the case in the summer!
I’m going to start with the Bucket List:
I’m not the best artist on the block but I did try (If you stand far away it looks a bucket..she tells herself in denial) on this one. I purchased a piece of this yellow poster board, traced the outline of the “shape” I wanted and cut it out. I used a separate piece of white construction paper for the handle and shovel. I honestly didn’t even glue anything-this is held together with a few pieces of scotch tape.
I then asked the kids to list some things they really wanted to do this summer. Some were easy like play dates they want to have or places they want to go like the splash pad. Some will take all summer like our summer reading challenge.
I then hit up Pinterest for ideas..you will notice I use the word Pinterest on this blog like most people use the word hello. I found a few surprise ideas for the kids that I knew I could do even on busier weeks of the summer when they have summer camps scheduled or we are just booked with lots of things to do. We will check mark off items as completed and they will be able to see what’s left as we go.
Next I used a piece of blue poster board to make our chore chart. I wanted the chart to be changeable by week based on what was in the worst shape frankly. Each Sunday night I’ll write a new list of that week’s daily responsibilities and tape it to the chart to start Monday off. For my youngest in addition to writing it out she will also have a picture of the “job” since she is still learning to read some words. (Keep in mind I’m not an artist, the pictures I drew might draw criticism even from small kids). The one pictured is for their first week of break as an example. Here it is:
Lastly I used another another sheet of yellow poster board for the week’s schedule. Because it will also need to be changeable per week I did it very simply. They will be able to see where we are going including whether they have a camp, a lesson or a fun trip somewhere. When the question what are we doing today is asked..which it will be at around 7 a.m. each morning I’ll tell them to check the schedule first, saving myself precious moments to try to drink my coffee warm.
I chose an area to hang all of them together as a sort of command center. They are so excited to get going on the bucket list!
So there you have it..the plan of attack. We’re gonna have some fun, they’re going to eat everything not nailed down and they’re probably gonna drive me a bit crazy too! Now that the plan is in place I gotta head to the store to pick up obscene amounts of coffee, wine and ice cream(one special mom only emergency box will be hidden behind the frozen veggies)..the summer staples for a SAHM. I Hunger Games mommy salute you-“May the odds ever be in your favor” summer parents!!
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