Oh, how do you survive in the summertime?

Ahhh….summer.  In my mind, summer is what I see in the magazines.  Outdoor picnics, working in the garden, family bike rides…lots of outdoor fun.

OH WAIT!  I live in Phoenix, Arizona.  Stepping outside is like opening your oven.  These activities just aren’t possible here in the summer time.

And here I have 4 kiddos home from school for the summer to entertain and it needs to be indoors as much as possible.

So today, I thought I’d share some of my solutions:

First of all – we needed to have some kind of schedule.  My family just functions better that way.  The kids like having something to look forward to, and it keeps me from hiding from them.  {ha ha…don’t judge me…}

One of my super genius friends told me about hers a few years ago and it is the #1-must-happen in my summer time planning.

Our Weekly Summer Schedule

Make-it Monday: It can be a craft – it can be a treat.  But we create something together.

You can get ideas on my pintrest board HERE

-OR-

If you feel like you just don’t have the crafty gene – Kiwi Crate has SUPER cute crafts that get shipped right to your house.  The kids LOVE them!! {even my 13 year old!!}  You can do a subscription or just buy individual crates.

Intelligent Tuesday: We head to the local library and spend time finding and reading books.  They also get to have computer time there.  You can give them research projects if you want to step it up a bit.

Wet Wednesday: We do SOMETHING involving water.  We don’t have a pool – so we go to a local splash pad, wash the car and have a water fight, swim at the city pool, go to a water park, etc.

Theatre Thursday: Our local movie theatre offers summer movies.  $5 per kid gets them a movie every week all summer long.  They love it and it gets us out of the house.

Sci-Fri Friday:  This was my sister-in-laws genius idea. {And I think the name is AWESOME!!} Every friday the kids go to her house and do science experiments.  THEY LOVE IT!!

That takes up a few hours every day.  Then what?  My kids self-entertain pretty well.  They love legos.  They love to play board games and card games and stuff.

But sometimes…it comes to “Mom, I’m BORED!”  

I got tired of the usual “what about this, what about that” game…so I’ve created an “I’m Bored” Activities Jar.

I'm-Bored-Activity-Sticks

This is in no way an original idea.  I’ve seen them around for forever…but I wanted to make it tailored to my family.

I’ve pinned all of the activities that need instructions onto my Summer Survival Pintrest Board.   If you follow it – any new pins will be sent your way.

For example: if you need to know how to make the bouncing bubbles – just click on the image on my pintrest page and it will take you to the tutorial.

There are a few rules associated with the “I’m Bored” Jar that I laid out to the kids ahead of time.

1. You MUST do whatever the stick says.

There are more than just fun things to do in there.  I have 3 categories: * Fun * Jobs * Educational *

So – if they draw a job – they have to do it.  In return – if they draw something fun that I need to help with – I have to drop what I’m doing and do it.   Fair trade, I’d say.

2. You can only draw 2 sticks per day per person.

I have 4 kids – but if you have a smaller family – you may want to up the limit.

3. We let everyone do the fun & educational sticks together.

The job sticks are yours to do alone.

Obviously, you can set this up however you want – and I’d love to hear any improvements or suggestions!!

I’ve included copies of the sticks I’ve created for my family for you to download & print. The image below is just one of 3 pages full of fun!

Bored-Sticks-Free-Printable

If you need a good old fashioned printable file that you can cut out yourself…you can download that HERE.

If you have a Silhouette:  I have a print and cut file all finished in the silhouette studio for you with the registration marks and all!!  You can download it HERE.

** I’ve included a blank page in each file – if you want to create your own or just add to what I’ve made.  The font I used is Cafe Rojo from Fonts101.  You can download it HERE.

**The stick size I used is the Jumbo Craft Stick (5.9″ x 0.7″)  I just found them at Wal-mart in the craft section.

**I spray painted one side of my sticks yellow so they were a little more cutesie…just because I like to make things more difficult.

**I left the inside free of a pattern to save on ink…but if you want to cute-ify it even more – you could print your pages on patterned scrapbook paper.  {I think a light gray or yellow chevron would be DARLING}

**Once you have the paper sticks cut out – just use a glue stick to attach the paper stick to the wooden stick.

{I let my kids help me make the sticks.  Not only did it give them something to do – but they got to see what was on them.  They are super excited about them now and I can use them as leverage.  Bwahahahaha.}

Thanks so much to everyone who contributed ideas on the Facebook Page!!  I’m going to try and use the blog’s Facebook page more for the giveaways and stuff like this – so make sure to LIKE US so that you’ll get our posts ;0)

 

 

 

8 thoughts on “Oh, how do you survive in the summertime?

  1. I totally hide from the kids! Or pretend to be asleep on the couch so I can take a break from answering a thousand questions! Ha”

  2. I LOVE the “Mom I’m bored” sticks! We have a similar summer schedule, but Saturdays is a gardening-cooking day for us where we get the kids to help with the garden and cook dinner. If we are harvesting, they also help can or freeze. Even the baby has fun picking peas off the vine or carrying squash up to the house!

  3. I love these! The zoo one is my favorite- that they have to research and label- genius! Sounds fun enough that I might have to do it myself (not sure Kennedy could quite pull it off)!

    • I’m so glad you like them! I think it would be SUPER fun. And hey – the little ones can keep the animals fed and played with ;0)

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