Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Slow Summer Days: Why Our Kids Are Not Signed Up for Everything

Summer is in full swing here and we are taking full advantage of the time off from school.  We aren't filling our time up with summer camps and classes, but instead we are intentionally staying home.  Don't get me wrong, I love the fact that almost everything has a summer program.
We could easily sign our kids up for something every week we are off. 

But you know what? I'm not signing them up.

Well, Kayla is signing up for one dance camp so she can try a different style of dance. And the kids are going to Vacation Bible School. But that's it. 

Aren't they bored? Don't they get on your nerves?....Yes, sometimes. But that's ok!  I actually want my kids to be bored. If my kids are bored, they will eventually find something to do.  If they don't, they are bored all day. Let me tell you that it only takes one or two long and boring days before the figure it out and start to get excited about their free time and all the possibilities. 

 They end up using their imaginations and creating something out of a fort or a box. Cardboard boxes are a hot commodity in this house.  They will spend hours making something out of a box. When we bought our book shelves, they used the boxes to make a movie theater. Really it was a puppet theater but they called it a movie theater. They made little puppets out of paper and popsicle sticks for several Disney movies. They had a blast!  

Another time it was a drive-in. 

Imagination has been taken out of everything. It isn't encouraged in school and at home we often don't give it time to develop.  Our society is so quick to fill our kids' time. We think they need to be busy all the time.  And video games. Even if they are limited, they can become a crutch.  Playing games...even educational ones, don't require any imagination. It's all there and done for them. 

I am also trying to add in a few adventures.  An adventure can be anything out of the ordinary. Maybe a spontaneous trip to the lake (20 minutes away for us). A surprise ice cream run in pajamas. A super messy craft or experiment that I wouldn't normally do. Even as simple as playing outside later than normal. We live in the south and it is H. O. T. during the day.  I love bedtime and I am usually pretty strict about sticking to it. But you know what? It feels great to play outside in the evening after dinner. Sometimes they even sleep in the next morning!

We are spending the summer soaking up the free time together.  We only have 18 together with each one.  Kayla is turning 10 this fall...so we have 8 left. We're making them count!

And here's this cutie just because he's cute. So squishy!

Are you having any little adventures with your kiddos this summer?  I'd love to hear about them! 

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