Creating a Summer Rhythm

I like a good schedule—the predictability of knowing what to expect. I get to have this three-quarters of the year.

Then, along comes summer with her pool days, her vacations, her warm temperatures, her longer days, and before I know it, she’s got me staying up late, feeling lazy and throwing my schedule right out of the window.

Don’t even get me started on what summer does to my kids. “What are we going to today? Can we go swimming? Can we go to the movies? When do we leave for vacation?”

So, how’s a mom to survive the summer with kids? How can we create a summer rhythm that is both functional and loose?

LAY LOW
I’m betting that like me, you run the school year pretty hard. With three elementary kids, a preschooler and both my husband and I in ministry, we find ourselves running like crazy during the school season. For my family’s health, we have to create time in the rhythm of our life to relax. Summer is a great time to recharge.

We just bought a house with a pool so any chance we have to soak up some vitamin D and swim, we’re taking advantage of it. For us, swimming has such a calming effect, and it’s a way for us to spend time together as a family. What calms you? What relaxes you?

LOOSEN THE SCHEDULE
Just because we’re building in time to relax doesn’t mean we completely throw the plan out the window. My kids still need time built in to read, to play on their own, to have their quiet times. But the rigidness that we live with during the school year loosens quite a bit in the summer. We make time for late nights, lazy mornings, Sonic trips and movies. Schedules are important, but so is fun. Fun will bond your family together faster than anything else.

LINGER IN THE MOMENT
I find that during the summer, I tend to linger longer – linger in conversations and moments. I’ve had some of the best conversations with my kids hanging by the pool, watching a movie, eating a snow cone. When you create space for conversations and fun, you create time for that struggle with your daughter’s having with that mean girl or maybe that reassurance your son needs that he can be a big boy and go potty. It’s hard to hear our kids when we are so over-programmed as a family and moving constantly. Summer gives us an opportunity to slow down and listen.

What are ways you create a rhythm for your family during the summer?

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