It's summer vacation.
I spent the entire school year being a single mom and still remaining fabulous in the eyes of my children by showing up at school events, being a PTO officer and having "Mommy and Me Time" with the kids individually on doctor appointment days while the other kids were still in school, those opportunities to spend time in the kids lives are no more with all kids now at home.
My kids LOVED the fact that I was a PTO officer and I planned out the events at the schools because it gave them bragging rights. All the kids in the school knew me and greeted me with "HI MRS. KAY!" every time I was in the school. I loved being there and knowing that my boys loved me being involved. Now that it's summertime, I have to come up with other ways to be that "AWESOME MOM" in my kids' lives.
There are so many things that you can do with your kids throughout the summer that will make them think of you as an awesome mom, and it doesn't have to cost you an arm and a leg to do it!
Yeah, you could take them to expensive inflatable jump houses, Chuck E Cheese type places or water parks all summer, but that kinda of fun becomes costly and for moms like me who are fabulously frugal. It just doesn't fit in the budget.
But with my kids, it doesn't take a lot to be an awesome mom. Just a little quality time makes them think they are having the best summer vacation of their lives. A little something every day for every few days and I promise you will be that mom that ROCKS!
Here are a few ideas to pass the time.
Making pizzas (or anything in the kitchen for that matter)- This is something that the kids LOVE. It's easy if you buy a pizza kit like Chef-Boy-r Dee or a Boboli Pizza dough and some of your favorite toppings. The kids get to get their hands dirty and add toppings that they like and they are all working together, laughing and having fun while doing it. If you invite a friend over to help it becomes another one of those "bragging rights" moments and you are not only cool to your kids, but you are the coolest mom on the block!
Board Games - My kids love to have a family game night, or day, or whenever we can get one in. I don't mean the video games, I mean the board games. The ones that we use to play when we were kids. They really love the fact that I use to play these games "back in the days", as they call it, and love asking questions about who use to beat who between my brother and me when we were kids. I love to introduce them to things that I loved when I was a kids.
Nerf Gun Wars - This was really one of the best nights I had with the kids, and it gave me an opportunity to be a kids right along with them. The boys got more Nerf Guns for Christmas to add to the small collection that they already had. Now, on a normal basis, they are not allowed to sun around the house and they are not allowed to shoot darts all over the place. But on one particular night, I decided to let them let loose, and I was the one who started it all. It was awesome as we ran through the house building forts and barriers out of couch pillows and laundry baskets for about 2 hours, just laughing and having fun.
Wii Competitions - I don't know why, but they love when we get together and play the Wii together. See, I'm a trash talker and I love laughing at them when I win and making fun of them when they lose. We can go back and forth like that for hours! I'm a team player like that. With the Wii being so interactive, they get to see me get silly and try to move my body in crazy ways to get my avatar to do what I want it to do. They think its funny and so do I. So Wii competitions bring tons of laughs... and sometimes tears, but they love that we are doing it together!
Camping in the Livingroom - Have you ever pitched a tent of bedsheets and blanket and had a camp out right in the middle of the living room? We pop popcorn, eat S'mores, and tell ghost stories by flashlight. What is awesome about this is that there's something about the dark that makes kids sleepy and so the night is often shorter than normal as they wind down in their sleeping bags or blanket on the living room floor. It's a Win Win situation!
If there is one saying that is true about kids it's that they keep you young. I have found that with summer vacations and spending more time with them, I have become more creative, more playful and more active. I do it all just to see the smiles that it puts on their faces, but OMG does it keep smiles on mine!