As a mom who loves structure and routine, I see summer as an exciting yet frightening time! When school, church events and schedules take a break it can seem daunting to look at the lack of structure in the months ahead. Here are a few very simple things I have learned for those times when you just need to sit and finish your coffee, you’re trying to make it to bedtime alive, or you simply CANNOT think up dinosaur dialouge for one more minute!

Take it outside:Almost anything you can do inside, you can do outside! Have a picnic, camp in the backyard, or throw some soap in with the sprinklers and call it a bath. I know it’s hot, but the outdoors offer endless possibilities; and it’s good for your health!

Invite a friend:Don’t for one second think you’re the only mom with kids saying they are bored two minutes after they wake up. Plan trips to the park, invite friends over, and be “that friend” who invites herself over so you don’t have to get your own house messy. We are designed to do life together and summer with kids is no different.

Create life experiences:Visit a local dairy or farm, help your kids create the grocery list and talk about budgets, actually take your kids inside the post office, or pick out a profession your child is interested in and visit that place of work. You would be amazed at how interested kids are in the seemingly mundane parts of life.

Think smarter, not harder:The internet is chalk full of ideas for science experiments, DIY projects, arts, crafts, and homemade treats with most of them using supplies you have around your house or would already buy anyways. I have also come across fun summer bucket lists full of great ideas (or help your kids make their own). A little planning goes a long way!

Let them be bored:This may sound counterintuitive, but instead of saving them with tablets and TV why not invite them to play with the toys collecting dust in the closet or use their imaginations? From experience growing up and seeing my boys now, giving kids a chance to push through their “boredom” and get creative is a battle well worth fighting!

And please don’t forget to throw in those days where you stay in your pajamas and watch way too much TV. It’s called balance.

Happy summer-ing!

We would like to thank Kendra Huckabee for writing this post!