Why, hey there everyone! Sorry for the three-week or so hiatus…..I did not anticipate taking such a long break from the blog, but that’s life for you. I would like to say that I have been super busy and productive this summer, and that is why I have not been blogging on the regular. But no, that’s not it at all. The other afternoon, for example, I sat on the back porch during Gavin’s “nap time” for almost two hours, reading and drinking lemonade. It was glorious, my friends. (Minus the 94 degree temperature, but whatevs. I am tough).
Anyhow, that’s what summer break is for, right? Doing what you want, when you want. Even if that means doing absolutely nothing.
However, I do try to accomplish some things during the summertime. As a teacher, I am lucky enough to both bring in an income, as well as have off roughly 12+ weeks a year. However, make no mistake. During the summer months, I am not a SAHM. I am nowhere near domestic enough to earn that title. Sure, I can cook the basics, and I will even pick up a broom on occasion, but I much prefer the title “Working Mom on Summer Break.” Takes the pressure off. I don’t want to get Kenny’s hopes up that his shirts will be ironed, or any nonsense like that.
Nah, you are much more likely to find me drinking mimosas at noon on my summer break.
Kidding! (I can totally picture my mom gasping aloud when reading this, and calling my sister to see if she thinks I have a drinking problem LOL.) While I may indulge in a mimosa on an ACTUAL summer vacation/ beach trip, I do try to refrain from day drinking (as the kids call it) during the week. With all of that being said, here are some tips that help me transition into a more effective “Working Mom on Summer Break.”
- Meal plan. While I am not one of those meal planners who spends all Sunday afternoons prepping, I do try to make a basic outline of our meals for the week. I get an idea of whether or not we are traveling or expecting company, and I go from there. Time is something that I have a lot more of during the summer, so I try to take advantage of this and plan some healthy meals. I even try to squeeze more fruits and veggies in there, since who doesn’t love strawberries, peaches, and watermelon, right?? (For more on healthy eating hacks for those averse to health foods, read my post here.)
- Plan a weekly agenda. It really helps me if I have some structure to my week. Otherwise, whipping up those mimosas at 11:00am or margaritas at 3:00pm starts to look a whole lot more tempting. For the most part, I just check out my calendar the week before, and start setting things up. We are going to attempt story time at the library again starting this week, and I also shoot for one organized play date for Gavin a week. (We tend to end up with more, since we do impromptu
happy hoursplay dates with the neighbors a couple of times during the week as well). Also this week, we are beginning a 4-week Kindermusik summer session. On top of all of that, I try to plan about one fun activity ($$) every week, ie. zoo, museum, splash pad, etc.
- Pick one weekday to leave completely free. I don’t like to over schedule kids, especially toddlers. Everyone, adults included, needs some downtime on the regular. I always make sure to keep one day wide open, without any official plans. This is not to say that we won’t do anything at all, but rather gives us options to do whatever we want. Will we make a spontaneous trip to a zoo in another town? Spend the entire afternoon floating in the pool? Play in the backyard? Heck, we might even have a movie day. I like to plan a day that is all our own.
- Set a summer chore list. Then, make sure to complete something on the list each day. I have a list of things I want to accomplish this summer. Some are must-dos….donating Gavin’s clothes, for example. There is no good reason that hundreds of dollars worth of clothing should be sitting around when other children could be benefitting. Also on my must-do list….organizing my closet. Then there is the “eh, maybe if I get to it” list. That would be organizing my guest closet, which has turned into pretty much a wrapping paper storage area. Finally, there is my “lazy” list. Like, if you want to feel productive while you drink a beer and watch a Lifetime movie. Those are things like cleaning out the junk drawer, dusting baseboards, etc. My summer motto though…..aim low so you will always be pleasantly surprised if you surpass expectations.
- Make an exercise plan. Summer is when I have the time to get fit. Or, at least fitter. Hopefully less fatter. I always make a tentative exercise plan each week, based on what I have going on that week, weather, Kenny’s schedule, etc. Being that I am a crazy lady who loves being out in the heat, running in the summer is not an issue for me. I also try to run/walk with other friends in the summer as well. My goal is to exercise 4-5 days a week in the summer. This is a vast improvement over the 1-2 times a week I exercise during the school year.
And there you have it, friends! So, if you are a fellow teacher like me who finds it hard to get motivated during the summer, start with this list. But let’s not go crazy, all right? After all, I didn’t become a teacher so I could cook and clean all summer. We may not make the big bucks, but who cares? Every day I thank God that my job allows me precious time to live my life and enjoy it to the fullest.
Also…….I have been reading up a storm! No surprise there, right? So far, I have read 31 books this year. At this rate, I should surpass my goal of 50 for the year. Check back, as I plan on reviewing two more on the blog this week.
Have a wonderful week, everyone!