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Summer is my favorite time of year. I love the lazy days of summer. Being outside is especially my favorite part of summer and I am learning how to keep kids cool. But when the temps creep up to 90 and above, I don’t force myself or my kids to go outside.
“Summer lovin’, happened so fast…”John Travolta and Oliva Newton John
Since moving to Florida, the temps hit 90 degrees the first week of May so we have had to adjust to hot temperatures. This led me to sit down with my kids and have a quick conversation about how we can remain active in the heat.
Keep Kids Cool
As a work from home Mom, there is nothing worse than when your kids have nothing to do during the day. Or for that conference call that is always right during meal time so everyone is angry by the time it is over!
The goal is to keep the kids busy, keep kids cool, and enjoy summer without losing your mind as a parent.
If you are a work from home parent and have to adjust your schedule so you can do some of these things with your kids I recommend it!
We all agreed that getting outside and running, biking, and playing outside before the heat is the best way to get out that energy.
I have found that when they are outside for about 30 minutes in the morning they are able to focus and do their summer homework. (Yes, I am a mom who believes in summer homework).
In addition to morning exercise, we have agreed that swimming in the afternoon is the best. It cools off the body, we get a little vitamin D and a little more exercise. Yes, we wear sunscreen!
Head to the beach! My kids love to head to the beach for the day or afternoon. They build in the sand, play in the water and it’s an afternoon of fun. We pack the cooler with drinks and snacks and sometimes we stay till the sun starts to set.
Or you don’t have to pack a cooler and you can decide you are going to support the local restaurants and shops by the beach. This is one of my favorite ways to go to the beach. But this does make the beach cost a whole lot more when you don’t pack your own food.
The town we live in has a community pool. We started purchasing pool passes when the boys were little and took swim lessons. We love our community pool. But you can always have a pool at your house! They are pretty inexpensive these days. We don’t have one, but my girlfriend has one of these Above Ground Swimming Pool and she LOVES it!
Water parks are an awesome day of fun. The kids talk about it for days after. My favorite part is the kids are usually so tired at the end of the day.
Depending on where you live, you can get season passes and then take the kids on a weekly basis (if you are able). We bought season passes to the water park here and the kids love it! The best part of season passes is the guest passes and letting the kids bring a friend.
Slip and slide
You can build your own slip and slide. I have always wanted to build a slip and slide but I never have. This tutorial on How to build an insane slip and slide in 3 easy steps is on point! I think you will like it if you want to go that route.
Or you can get a store-bought one. We have tried the store-bought ones and they are a ton of fun. The one we had was like this:
Squirt gun wars
Living in Florida, squirt guns have become a need. We have decided that the super soakers like these are the best. I stock up at the end of the summer season because extras are always good to have and it’s endless summer in Florida.
Water Balloons are so much fun and they only last for a short time. We follow up water balloons with squirt guns usually.
Good old fashioned water sprinkler with lots of giggles and laughter. If you don’t have a sprinkler, don’t forget to grab a hand nozzle for your hose.
Evening Bike rides
As a family, we have started taking evening bike rides. Riding our bikes a couple of miles keeps our body moving and the cool breeze makes it feel like it’s really not THAT hot out.
As my kids get older I am trying to allow them to figure out what they can do. I think it’s good to let the kids get bored so they can figure it out. We also live in a neighborhood where all the kids roam together (which I love) and I often help them figure something out.
Fun Summer Activities
Summer activities to keep kids cool don’t always have to be outside. They can be inside too. The goal is to keep kids occupied to keep them off devices.
Legos are hours of fun for both boys and girls. I am a boy mom and my boys still play with Legos and they are Tweens!
Board games have a special place in my heart. Its where a TON of family bonding happens. Check out this post about our favorite board games!
I love playing cards. I have spent the summer teaching my kids how to play cards. Or favorite games are Speed, Slap Jack and we just started to learn how to play Rummy. Whatever the game, there is always room for some good quality time.
Libraries have summer reading programs and they are wonderful! My kids like to track how many books they can read in the 10 weeks. Well, I should say I have one kid who likes to read and the other who doesn’t.
Learning an instrument is fun and when you are able to play a song in just a few weeks after practicing is a good accomplishment. We try and encourage our kids to play an instrument and I love hearing them play!
While I do believe that summer should be filled with lazy and fun days, there are a few rules we need to follow.
- Monitor your kid’s hydration. Keep the popsicles and Gatorade flowing. Kids don’t realize how thirsty they are until it is too late.
- Always supervise kids with water. The element of water brings a different kind of fun and sometimes it can be dangerous.
- Use some sort of sunscreen to protect your skin. I believe in getting Vitamin D naturally, so I allow the kids to be outside in the early morning without sunscreen, then it gets applied at lunchtime. After lunch, I never know if they are going to be in or outside and I like to start the afternoon with at least one application of sunscreen. If you need help with sunscreen, check out this article 17 Best Sunscreens for Summer and Beyond.
I hope you have a great summer and enjoy keeping kids cool with fun summer activities like these!
Stephanie has been blogging at Sticky Note Mom for 4 years. Before starting her blog she worked in the finance industry working on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade to working for major financial institutions with personal financial planning and the mortgage industry. Now she shares all she has learned about frugal living to help others learn how to stop spending and start saving more.