Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Mom's “Must-Do's” Before The Kids Get Out Of School

My Guilty Pleasure:  The Beach, ALL BY MYSELF

Now that Memorial Day has passed, my kids are giddy with the fact that school is over in just under 3 weeks. Yeah, they're dancing around with joy but, as much as I love the Summer, I'm tensing up in a panic. Only 18 days left until my solace is over, until I hear the constant whine of “What are we gonna do today?” and the incessant chatter of “Can I have a playdate? Can I have a playdate? CAN I HAVE A PLAYDATE?!” My nerves are already starting to contract.

Still, I have 18 weekdays left to get things done that I cannot get done with them or, at least, can't get done except with difficulty.

Among my “must-do's” are:

  • Schedule any doctors' appointments for myself. There's no reason my kids should have to wait with me to see my doctors when I can go now and get those appointments over with.
  • Do some home repairs and organizing. Ever try to paint a porch with kids around? It's great that they want to help, but sometimes “too many cooks in the kitchen” are not productive. Time to grout, paint, and organize by myself.
  • Get our pool/beach stuff together. It's inevitable that I will not be able to find all of the toys, floaties, goggles, etc. that the kids will need the first day the town pool opens. It's time to look for that stuff now while I still have a functioning memory cell left.
  • Make appointments for the kids' medical check-ups. Wellness visits book up fast during the summer. It's time to make them now before school starts in the Fall.
  • Download and carefully read any school sports forms. Some need to be filled out by various doctors over the Summer with some deadlines for the upcoming school year taking place as early as July. This is the time to see what criteria we've met in terms of exams and shots and what we still need to address, especially since annual physicals are coming up.
  • Watch whatever TV shows I want. We have one television in the house and once Summer comes, my daughter occasionally relaxes by watching her shows. Until then, I can watch all the “Love It Or List It” I want without worrying about sharing the television.
  • Make a summer schedule. I did this last year and it helped tremendously! I basically sketch out the summer, including which kid is in what camp and when, when sports practices start and the week our family vacation is scheduled to take place. On the bottom of the schedule is a list of day trips I want to take with the kids – very helpful because, again, I don't expect to have many brain cells left come August.
  • Come up with an informal list of which friends will be around when. Many of our friends go away for the summer and some of the kids' playmates will be at sleep-away camp. Knowing who is around when comes in handy.
  • Make plans for some “Moms Only” nights when I can see my friends without kids in tow. Having something to look forward to helps me keep my sanity.
  • Stock up on sunscreen. Since the effectiveness of sunscreen wanes over time, I'm seizing the moment to ditch the old stuff and replace it with new stuff. You can't be too careful.
  • Clean the coolers. There's nothing worse than going to pack your cooler with ice, only to be met with a funky smell when you take the lid off. Time to get out the baking soda and vinegar and give them a good scrub.
  • Visit people it might be difficult to visit with the kids. My aunt is in a nursing home and although my kids love spending time with her, once camp starts, it's harder to go and see her. I want to visit her as much as possible before our Summer hours change and life gets a bit more variable.
  • Go to the beach by myself. One of my guilty pleasures is dropping my daughter off at school and then driving down to the beach and spending some time there before I come back to pick her up. Sitting by the water, alone, is like a mini-vacation that I cherish. Since my kids aren't beach people, this is the time for me to make these indulgent forays. They're my way of showing myself some love!
I love the Summer and spending time with my children, especially since my son is about to enter high school and my days with him are numbered. Getting prepared ahead of time will help me enjoy the kids more and worry about details of Summer less. I've got 18 days to prepare – I'm going to make them count!

What do you fit in before the kids get out of school? I'd love to know!

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