June 19, 2019
I want to love the summer...I really do. If I'm honest though, summer can be a very hard time. As a stay at home mom and a work at home mom, I can often find myself feeling scattered and before I know it, the day is over!
This summer, I have been reading through Proverbs with some other women, and the ideas of discipline and intentionality have been consistently repeated. The Bible teaches us to make the most of our time because the days are evil (Ephesians 5:16). What we must do is make our best plan and then bring it to the Lord and trust Him with it (Proverbs 16:3).
Here are 7 practical things we've incorporated into our summer to make our days more intentional. My hope is that these ideas do not burden you, but instead are a way to help you organize your days!
1. Start in the Word
I truly believe this is the most important. How we begin each morning sets a tone for the rest of the day, and when we wake up and give God praise, it puts things into perspective. Your quiet time doesn't have to be long- every season is different, but let's start our day with giving God praise and thanksgiving and offering to Him the details of our daily life.
I recently wrote a blog post about the importance of not taking a vacation from God in the summer.
2. Chore Chart
I am firm believer that every member in our family has a part to play. I want my kids to be kids and have time to play, and I also want to teach them how to become responsible adults. During the school year, they have limited chores, but because there is so much extra time in the summer, this a great opportunity to teach them some new responsibilities.
I have used this Chore Chart in the past, but you could also just write chores on note cards and give each child their chores to complete each day.
Some of their chores include:
3. Summer Rules
For the past couple of summers, we have been using this Summer Rules Chart, and it has helped to give a structure to our day. On our list, some of the things I have my kids complete are:
This has helped our children not just wake up and ask to watch television, but instead to plan out their day and become more responsible.
4. Bucket List
I honestly have mixed feelings about this one. I have tried in the past to make a bucket list for our family, but it really stressed me out, and I felt like my kids had such high expectations each day. This year, I printed out this Bucket List, and we made a very minimal list of things we wanted to do. They included items like summer reading program, visiting grandparents, or doing a lemonade stand. Our list is less than 10 things and they are completely doable by the end of the summer. :)
5. Make One on One Time with Each Child
Whenever possible, I try to sneak away with each kid separately. It may be taking a walk, running an errand, reading a book, or playing a game, but I try to find little moments that I can spend some one-on-one time with each child. Even if we are driving in the car and dropping off siblings at camps, that can be a time to have meaningful conversations with my children.
6. Meet with Other Moms or Couples
So many times during the summer, we take a break from our lifegroups, our small groups, and our Bible studies. Since this is actually a season with more "margin," it can be a great time to start a Bible study or make a weekly date for couples to get together. One night this summer, our lifegroup met at Central Market (kids eat free on Tuesdays) and had dinner on the porch while the kids played.
7. Don't be Afraid for Your Kids be "Bored"
We live in a Pinterest world filled with expectations, and it's so easy to feel the pressure to keep our children entertained and happy all the time. But y'all, we need to lay this down at the foot of the cross. I'm preaching to myself here too. It is okay for our kids to be bored. I can't even believe how freeing it was to write that. Maybe even say it out loud- it is okay for our kids to be bored. It's a great thing for them to learn to use their imaginations and be creative. I don't want my children to be entitled and feel like they deserve something "fun" every day.
On "low key summer days," I think it's great to turn off electronics and let them use their imaginations- build a fort, color a picture, write a letter to a grandparent, serve someone in need...the sky is the limit!
What are you some ways you are intentional with your family in the summer?
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