Posts Tagged ‘summer’

101 Things to Do in the Summer with Your Kids

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

Summer is a time for slowing down, released from after school activities and homework.  We all hold our childhood summer memories dearly, close to our hearts.  Here are just a few ways to make more summer memories with your kids:

  1. Go to the beach!
  2. Make homemade popsicles
  3. Run barefoot in the grass
  4. Have a movie marathon
  5. Jump rope
  6. Try yoga
  7. Go to the park (one with sprinklers is even better)
  8. Have a picnic dinner or lunch
  9. Kick around a soccer ball
  10. Chalk + sidewalk = inner artist
  11. Play video games together on a rainy day
  12. Play dress-up
  13. Go to a museum
  14. Go swimming
  15. Visit a local botanical garden or community garden
  16. Dance around the living room with abandon
  17. Visit the library
  18. Look up free concerts, movies, etc. in your area
  19. Go camping
  20. Eat watermelon
  21. Go strawberry or blueberry picking
  22. Taco Tuesday
  23. Have a spa day at home
  24. Host a sleepover
  25. Bubbles
  26. Play kick the can
  27. Make your own summer salad buffet
  28. Roast marshmallows
  29. Ride your bike
  30. Go on a hike
  31. Visit a flea market
  32. Make pet rocks
  33. Have a lemonade stand
  34. Go to an amusement park
  35. Plant flowers
  36. Watch fireworks
  37. Make homemade waffles
  38. Go fishing
  39. Write a letter to someone and actually mail it
  40. Catch fireflies
  41. Visit the zoo
  42. Ice cream sundaes
  43. Have a family basketball tournament
  44. Create theme weeks, like animals, space, or whatever your kid loves most.
  45. Make a blanket and pillow fort
  46. Go horseback riding
  47. Visit a farmers market
  48. Sno cones
  49. Play cat’s cradle: http://www.wikihow.com/Play-The-Cat’s-Cradle-Game
  50. Go to a street fair
  51. Eat a pickle on a stick
  52. Go to a baseball game
  53. Fly a kite
  54. Go roller skating or skateboarding
  55. Family game night!
  56. Make a summer tote bag
  57. Write a song
  58. Wiggle your toes
  59. Make a fruit salad
  60. Learn how to hula hoop
  61. Play mingolf
  62. Have a scavenger hunt
  63. Dance contest
  64. S’mores
  65. Go bowling
  66. Play tennis
  67. Make a watercolor painting
  68. Have a science day
  69. Breakfast for dinner
  70. Learn origami: http://www.origami-fun.com/origami-for-kids.html
  71. Frisbee
  72. Obstacle course
  73. Make a sandcastle
  74. Give the dog a bath
  75. Make shirts
  76. Visit a farm
  77. Hopscotch
  78. Make homemade pizza
  79. Visit a planetarium
  80. Make a bird feeder
  81. Go on a boat ride
  82. Make a nature collage
  83. Bake cupcakes
  84. Visit a thrift store
  85. Go to a carnival
  86. Make suncatchers
  87. Go for a walk at twilight
  88. See a play
  89. Slip’n’slide
  90. Play stick ball
  91. Science experiment
  92. Playdoh
  93. BBQ
  94. Make a summer photo album
  95. Finger puppets
  96. Star gaze
  97. Volunteer
  98. Have a sidewalk or garage sale
  99. Enjoy the sunshine
  100. Learn something new
  101. Make a list of activities you want to do this summer and hang them on the wall so the kids can check them off.

The Peach Trees

Monday, October 10th, 2011

When I was eleven years old, my Aunt had a pool in her backyard in Sheepshead Bay.  It was about four feet tall.  My cousins and I would play Marco Polo for hours, “Marco!” and “Polo!” rang through the summer air.  We ran around the edges of the pool, faster and faster, until we created a whirlpool.  We had handstand contests as we inhaled the stinging chlorine; the undeniable scent of the summer sun permeated the air.  We refused to leave the pool until our fingers and toes had shriveled up so tightly that we felt them in the water.

Sometimes the older boy cousins, rambunctious and full of mischief, would jump from the edge of the pool into the water.  The flimsy pool wall bent in utter misery, under the weight of their feet.  They would laugh as they pushed our heads under the water, letting us go only when we flailed our arms desperately as the water began to enter our mouths and nostrils. We bobbed up, concerned more about choking then those boys, coughing the excess water which burned our throats and reddened our faces with stinging chlorine.

At some point, we would exit the pool, land on our bare feet upon the uncaring concrete ground, water dripping off our bodies in a fierce competition with the warm sun.  Along the yellow-sided house were peach trees.  We would run to pull a soft, round, furry peach off the branch.  The peach was warm and we cupped both it in both hands careful not to squish its fragile body.  Then we bit into the peach’s sweet flesh and smiled as the juice ran down our chins all the way to our neck.

School Year End

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

I remember a time when the school year end meant that the teacher pulled out the board games and crayons for drawing pictures.  We scrubbed pen marks off our desks with Comet and we talked about what we wanted to do for the summer.  There was always the feeling that we would have a happy ending to our grueling school year, field trips and testing left a faint taste in our mouths.  Cafeteria food would make way for watermelon and tomatoes picked right out of my grandmother’s garden.  It was a whimsical time, school friends bidding goodbye to become reacquainted with the children on our blocks.  We would share our  tears spilled from skinned knees and relish the first time we could spend a dollar on the ice cream truck, it’s sweet melody luring us away from sidewalk games like the pied piper.  The anticipation of block parties and barbecue made our skin tingle.

Today we have playoffs and end of the year meetings.  We have summer activities to schedule and day camps to send our children off too.  We have vacations planned and end of the year parties, for school and for every darn activity our child participated in.  We have summer to prepare for, new swim suits and sunscreen to buy.  I continue to wonder why it costs almost eight bucks a bottle!  The upcoming school year reaching from September into June to suffocate us and make us drop to our knees.  Summer is a break from the busy world we live in all year and it is in danger of extinction.  We need to perserve our summer days. The lazy summer days that never seem to end, particularly the most humid of the bunch are now cast aside.

My third grader had finals this week, she was stressed and studious trying to cram the last bit of information inside her head before school finishes.  She is not given the natural slide from school to summer.  It sometimes causes sadness when I see the tension that the idea of faster and more is better, creates.

Of course, summer will come whether we schedule its everyday or not.  I personally want nothing more than my daughter to sit on our Brooklyn stoop with an Italian ice with a friend.  Sticky goodness running down to their elbows, complaining they are bored while they count the scabs on their legs after running through the park.   School and the accompanying work a distant memory for a few months.