Transitioning from your school routine in summer can look different for each family. Perhaps it means earlier mornings to get the kids to camp or heading to the lake house for lazy days by the water. Many families juggle multiple camps and extracurriculars. Whatever summer looks like for your family, the organization plan and your routine likely need to transition. Keeping your stuff organized overall helps you transition into the summer more smoothly. Keeping all the summer clothes, towels, water bottles and sunscreen labeled, well stocked and on hand makes the summer days smoother and allows everyone to stay a little more stress-free!
Here are some tips to ease into a new summer routine and what you can do to keep organized while having a fun summer!
1. Have a Family Calendar
Put your calendar in a place accessible to the whole family. Use stickers to indicate daily activities for kids you can’t yet read (a star for camp, a green dot for grandma’s house, blue for soccer etc.). This allows them to look ahead and have an idea of what’s upcoming each week. This is particularly important for kids who may have multiple camps or extracurricular activities.
If your kids are busy with extracurriculars, make sure to check out the Mabel’s Labels Kids Sports & Activities Labels; having everything properly labelled for football, cheer, dance, soccer or whatever their activity is will help keep their stuff organized and will eliminate some of the stress all the extra gear can bring!
2. Do your best to keep a consistent(ish) schedule.
Going to bed and getting up at the same time helps you stay stress-free! Waking up, eating breakfast, and getting ready for the day (regardless of what the day entails) is essential; it may be tempting to let them sleep in, but having consistency with this makes it easier on the days you need to leave the house early! If they’re getting enough sleep and waking at the same time, your mornings will be smooth (ish) sailing.
3. Establish screen time rules early on and stick to them.
Work with your child to create rules that work for both of you and stick to them. Letting them know when and how long they get on tech means less nagging and negotiation, which can stress the summer.
4. Plan Fun Outings!
Summer is a time for our kids to relax and have fun; join in the fun with them by heading out for a fun day. Whether it’s a theme park, beach day or a playdate with friends, you’ll appreciate the time together. Make sure to plan ahead and add it to your family calendar to give everyone something fun to look forward to!
For the days when you’re heading to a theme park or beach – make sure to get some Silicone ID Bracelets, customize them with a name and phone number, then have your kids wear them to stay identified and safe in crowded places.
5. …but don’t fill every day!
If your family thrives on routine, it can be very tempting to make sure every day has a camp or activity planned. Instead, allow kids for kids to be kids. It is their summer break, after all! Give them enough time this summer to play with friends, explore outside – and get bored! (boredom breeds creativity, so they need to feel bored sometimes). If they’re heading to a friend’s pool party or playing in the sprinkler – make sure they have everything they need: water bottles, towels, sandals, and sun protection!
Pick up a label pack to ensure all their stuff is well-labelled and doesn’t get mixed up. For your preschoolers, you’ll find that the Preschool Label Pack is an excellent choice because it includes the left-right shoe labels that allow kids to put their shoes on the right feet – which gives them the independence they crave!
6. Prep for camp ahead of time!
If your kids are heading off to Camp this summer, make sure to keep yourself and their things more organized with Camp Name Labels. If they’re gone overnight, pick up a Sleepaway Camp Label Pack (perhaps they’re too young for sleepaway camp – but these also work great for big family camping trips or when they’re heading to “camp Grandma” with all the cousins!)
For your littles and day campers, the Day Camp Label Pack is for kids heading back and forth each day. Name labels will avoid costly repurchases. Plus, they’re dishwasher and laundry safe, so once they are stuck, you don’t have to think about it again! Finally, knowing everything has a label will make your mornings much easier; no more siblings squabbling about who’s belongs to whom!
7. Packing your bags the night before.
Get into the habit of looking at the calendar with your kids the night before and deciding together what needs to be prepared. Likely in the summer, this will be different each day, depending on the activity, and it can sometimes be more complicated than during the school year.
If your kids have allergies, it’s a good idea to make sure you use Kids Safety & Medical Labels; that way, when they leave the house each day, parents have peace of mind knowing that these labels offer a reminder of their allergies or medical condition.
The point of having summer organization & routine isn’t so they stay busy every minute and schedule with organized activities, but rather that it’s to keep them on a consistent schedule to keep some security and organization to their day. Plus, it makes life easier for parents when you’re well-organized and have planned ahead of time!
Of course, there should always be lots of downtime. Allow them time to get bored, explore, ride bikes with friends, get dirty and be creative. But it’s easy to fit these spontaneous activities, lazy afternoons and downtime into your summer while still having a consistent routine.