8 Simple Ways to Create Family Time This Summer
When you think back to your summer holidays as a child, what are your fondest memories? No doubt you conjur up memories that involve moments spent with family and friends. These summer holidays help to create memories that will linger with your children in years to come and build stronger bonds. These are a few ideas to help get you started.
1. Shake Off the Schedule
It’s easy to feel like you need to have a summer holiday schedule to keep the kids occupied, and while it’s great to have some things scheduled, make sure you allow a break from scheduled activities. You don’t want to get to the end of the holidays feeling burnt out as you head into the new school year. Leaving a bit of space in your holiday calendar will give you space to spend time together and chill out – which is what summer holidays should be all about.
2. Create a Family Zone
Ok hand’s up if, in your home, you have a separate area for the kids to lounge to where the adults lounge. This is always practical and great for providing some time out, but it also creates an element of separation. So take a look around your home this summer and see how you can create an area that invites the family to spend time together. You could make it a summer project to give the room a makeover and get the family invested in making this space special. It’ll soon become your favourite room.
3. Recharge without Technology
Whilst technology has a way of keeping us connected and entertained, it is also equally distracting and disconnecting. Take a cue from Mother Nature’s lazy days of summer and spend time recharging the family’s batteries with simple outings like playing frisbee in the backyard, play games on your Springfree Trampoline, having a picnic at the park or beach, picking wildflowers to place on the kitchen table, blowing bubbles on the front deck, reconnect with friends – and while you do all of this, leave the electronics behind.
4. Cook Together and Share
Without all the hustle and bustle, summer holidays provide more time to spend preparing meals and do baking. Get the kids involved, trying out new recipes as well as making family favourites. Make a bit extra and surprise a family in need (think new baby, sick parent, new to the community) with the extra portions you’ve prepared and see the impact of paying it forward has on your children.
5. Cool Down the Fun Way
The heat can be piercing in summer and kids just love to play with water, in any way they can – but don’t let them have all the fun. What kids love more than playing in sprinklers or with water balloons or super soakers is, having their parents or caregivers join them! Whatever the water activity of choice, channel your inner child and get out there with them.
6. Do a Jigsaw Puzzle
These are a great family bonding activity. Lay it out on a flat surface and get all hands-on deck to ‘piece’ the puzzle together. Once invested, the kids will be hard-pressed to leave the jigsaw as they try to get it to the finished product, particularly if doing a puzzle like the WASGIJ puzzles where you don’t know what the final picture is and it’s always a fun scene that unfolds that will keep the kids entertained. There is nothing quite like the satisfaction of completing a large puzzle as well.
7. Let the Student be the Teacher
As we know, kids are like sponges growing up as they absorb and learn, but they then have a way of adding their own lens to this information. As a result, what you might find is that they can actually teach you something and you’ll be surprised what you might learn. Just as they ask us a lot of questions, spend some time asking them questions, giving them the opportunity to pass their wisdom onto you.
8. Discover Your Town
Whilst borders are open in time for summer, there is still a shortage on availability for popular holiday hot spots, so if you’ve found yourself staying local this summer, head out into your community and see what hidden gems you can uncover. Often, we take what is in our neighbourhood for granted but take a look at apps such as TripAdvisor to see your town through a tourist’s eyes and no doubt you’ll end up having a great time exploring it through fresh eyes.
Seek to use any opportunity you can to spend together as a family and this will go a long way to making this summer the best yet!