Parents: Start Off Summer Right (And Then Relax)

When kids of all ages get summers off, new stresses hit the family. Here are 10 tips to get your summer started off on the right foot:


1.     Decide up front how you’d like the household to run, and make sure everyone understands.

Does watching your teen sleep past noon, or seeing your 7-year-old watch TV all day drive you to the brink? Make a rule about wake up time, and another about how much TV is okay, and let everyone know.

2.     Make a schedule for camps, family trips, and important activities so everyone is on the same page.

3.     Plan at least one family trip. Lounging around the house has value, but making memories over the summer break can’t be beat.

4.     Identify your non-negotiables. If you’re not going to tolerate a lazy summer, or if you won’t put up with a messy family room, make this clear from the get-go.

5.     Write it down. When making new rules, it’s helpful for everyone if you spell them out in writing. This settles disputes over differing memories between family members.

6.     Give each kid a summer job. Whether it’s lawn mowing, or walking the dog, each child (or young adult) in the family can make a contribution.

7.     Make a budget. Summer fun can get expensive. Planning in advance can curb overspending.

8.     Be flexible. As important as it is to plan, things will still go unexpectedly. Be ready to adapt where necessary. 

9.     Start any required summer work (like summer reading, or applications for fall programs) early. Waiting until the end of summer for these responsibilities heightens stress for everyone.

10. Have fun! Take advantage of the slower pace and enjoy the break!


Posted on June 12, 2017 .