By Heather Keenan
Summer is here. Soon your little darlings will be looking to you, and only you, to entertain them for a the next few months. All mothers enter this period of the year with the best intentions. Our kids will not sit in front of the TV all day, they will not veg out on their tablets, they will enjoy nature, damn it! Now, just give us a minute to figure out how exactly we will accomplish this.
Option 1: Splash Pad/Pool
It’s 9:45am and lunches are already packed. You and your little swimmers are going to be the first ones at the gate. You will have your choice of shade spots and your kids will arrive pre-suncreened. You are Queen Chlorine and will spend the entire day watching memories be made, poolside. That is until you have been there for an entire 12 minutes and your eldest child decides they are starving, so you supply a snack. Next the middle one has to go to the bathroom. Nope, false alarm, oh wait, not a false alarm, return to the bathroom. Phew, ok, you are now back poolside only to look over as your two year old is chugging pool/pee water like it is an ice cold Blue Moon.
Funny, isn’t it, how you thought you may catch a few rays while they splashed about? Hey, at least they aren’t home giving each other haircuts.
Option 2: The Park
Now that my kids are a little older and able to navigate the park with ease, it is borderline enjoyable. Borderline. The little one still needs assistance, but one out of three isn’t so bad. You approach the park, again pre-sunscreened/bug sprayed, with all natural, organic products, of course (enter sarcasm), with water bottles in hand. There they go, frolicking, until……”MOM! BEES!!!!” Trying to reason with a child who is terrified of bees is about as effective as Congress trying to do anything. It isn’t happening. Also, they are all now hot, because this is North Carolina, where we wear humidity as an accessory. So go ahead and forget about that lunch you have packed, you are definitely headed to FroYo.
The upside is that at least you can top that delicious frozen yogurt with some fruit. Bam, still a healthy lunch.
Option 3: The Movies
This is a great one, I think. There are so many cheap movies to see over the summer and the theaters have AC! While I know we don’t want our kiddos to be screen zombies, seeing a movie in the theater gets a free pass in our house. If we are all sitting together, watching and enjoying the same flick, I consider that family time, not just screen time. So there, think of it that way the next time you are chowing down on some popcorn and enjoying the big screen this summer. I mean, sure, your kids are going to have to pee at all different times and fight over who got what candy while they suck down sugary drinks, but hey, you’re not sweating. Winning.
Once you are home, you can force their little butts outside, because “you are not sitting around all day watching TV! We JUST watched a movie!”
Of course there are tons of other things to do with your crew over the hot summer months, these are just a few examples. All of your choices will come with some headache, here and there, but would you rather be doing anything else? I doubt it. All good things in life come with a little bad, even being a mom. Just make sure at some point in the season you ditch the kids and head to the pool solo and go catch a movie of your choosing!
Stay cool, fellow Summer Warriors!
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