First Week of Summer

Even thought last week was technically the first week of summer vacation, it didn't really feel like it because I was out of town for part of the week and then busy with the BYU study for the other two days. This was our first 'real' week of summer break and I think it went pretty well. We did have some family in town so we spent some time with them and that gave us something to do. Monday night we went to the summer reading kick-off at the library and the kids had a great time. There was a magic show and both kids were totally fascinated by it. Also, afterwards, there were some people there from Build-a-Bear with a guy dressed in a teddy bear costume. Little Dude was totally blown away by 'the bear that moves by himself!' I wish I had been able to videotape his reaction--it was priceless.

I typed up a "summer schedule" for us to follow and I think it is helping all of us to stay sane. S-Boogie likes rules and having something to keep track of, and it's really helped with the TV issue because they know that TV time is not until 2:00 in the afternoon. Things are still pretty flexible and we don't follow it to the letter, but it has been nice to have a bit of structure in our day. We start with getting dressed and doing some cleaning up. Then we have an hour for scripture study and 'learning time'. I've started reading the Book of Mormon with the kids and so far it's going well; they both can read a bit and are still excited about doing it. I'm proud of the fact that we've kept it up every day so far. We haven't done a lot for 'learning time' so far this week, mostly just some reading out loud and things like that. On Thursday we colored a worksheet about musical instruments that I found online and then we watched a few You Tube videos about the orchestra (and Peter and the Wolf). I'm trying to keep it low-key.

After getting ready for the day and doing a little bit of reading or studying, we have time for an 'activity'. We go to the library at least once a week, and on Wednesdays our ward has a play-date at the park. We also met a friend at the park this morning too (even though it was cold). Our other activity for the week was a trip to the Bean museum on BYU campus combined with a picnic at the park. This summer our finances are pretty limited and we have a small baby to work with, so we aren't planning too many big excursions. Hopefully we'll get some fun coupons from the summer reading program so we can do some fun things.

In the afternoon I've started requiring an hour of quiet time after lunch while the baby naps. I've been enjoying the break and the kids generally have been too. Today S-Boogie sat on the couch and read a book for nearly an hour. Little Dude has been a bit resistant to the idea some days, but generally doesn't mind the opportunity to play quietly in his room or look at books. Then they get some TV time and we just have 'free time' for the last few hours of the day. For the next two weeks they will be doing swim lessons in the afternoons, so that will fill some of our time.

I think this summer might feel a bit long for me, but I hope it will be fun for the kids. I'm trying to balance a good amount of unstructured time with a bit of fun activities and good memory-making. I've also learned to reach out to friends and spend more time playing together because that makes life more fun. Hopefully by the end of the summer we'll be sad to see it go.

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