Are you slightly panicking at the thought of three months off with the kids in tow? How will I keep them entertained?! This is the thought that all parents wonder as the weeks stretch before them. It's lovely to have them home but all parents wonder how to keep their little ones occupied and boredom-free. And on that note, we have come up with a handy guide to surviving the summer months with them, in a way that's fun for all of you - YOU'RE WELCOME!
We all know its nearly impossible to plan anything in advance with a brood demanding of different needs and attention. We know as soon as plans are made, someone falls ill or has a melt-down. Don’t make a rigid itinerary. Just have a rough idea of how you will fill the next few weeks to start - it will do wonders for your mummy mental health!
Night Before Meal-Prep
The thought of having three sit-down meals every day can be daunting if you are used to packing lunches. Cooking the dinner when they are not in your shadow or at your heels, is a whole new experience. It may seem cliché, but meal-prep can actually be therapeutic. You cook at your own pace, follow a YouTube tutorial, have a glass of wine and listen to anything but the Paw Patrol soundtrack. Also, get the bigger ones to help out, it'll keep the fun element in and they'll be sure to clear the plates if they've helped cook their own food.
Send them to a fun AND educational-based summer camp
Summer camps are a fantastic way for them to get out and about, and the camps in question can be educational as well as fun - so they are a double whammy of goodness. Trinity College Dublin's Trinity Walton Club has an exciting STEM summer camp those from 13-17 years of age are sure to love. They can enjoy a week of designing, collaborating and learning, all while they are making new discoveries, making stuff and making friends. There are STEM camps for all secondary school students (the junior camps are pre-junior certificate students and the senior camps are for post-junior certificate students). The camp starts from 11th-15th June or 16th -20th July (for pre-Junior Cert students) and 25th – 29th June or 16th – 20th July (for post-junior cert students). Further information is available HERE but act quickly as spaces are given on a first-come, first-served basis only!
As parents, we spend time thinking of creative ways to entertain our little ones. This is great, especially now we have Google to rely on for inspo. However, complexity is not necessary when it comes to kids. Why not throw wellies in their general direction and lock the back door? (figuratively of course). Let them discover the world in a safe space where you can easily keep an eye on them as you go about the seven-hundred things on your to-do list. The local park, green or Grandparents garden will work fine if you don’t have a backyard. No planning action-packed day trips or creative crafts, just plain old outdoor fun!
Go back to basics
It's the simple things in life that can make for the most fun! Plan a scavenger hunt with the neighbours' little ones, bake some 'summer themed' biscuits with the kids, do some colouring (there are some great print outs in our colouring pages section), take them swimming on the sunny days, plan nature walks, go for picnics, practice 'camping' in the back garden - trust us, the kids will love it.
Don’t try to be a supermum who uses only self-grown ingredients, handmakes school uniforms and has a perfect balance of sporting and educational activities scheduled for every minute of the summer break, it's just not realistic. Do at least one freezer dinner. Use the damned IPad. Binge watch a new series when they are FINALLY asleep (or at summer camp). It's your break too... Sort of!