How to manage school holidays and vacations?
Summer is just around the corner, and I can’t wait to spend more time with my loved ones… however, as for many other families with small kids, it is a great challenge for us as well to manage the looooong summer break kids have… with two full time working parents. 🙈
In the last few years, I managed to figure out some good practices that helped us both with saving our mental health and having fun together. 😅
Here comes a few of these summer vacation ideas and “survival” tips, to help you get the most out of your family summer as well:
1. Do not try to solve everything on your own
I know, Mums are superheroes, but believe me, in this case, responsibilities are really like chocolate… it tastes better if you share ?😆
You know the proverb that it takes a village to raise a child. Well, I thought not for me… It should not be that hard if I can handle complex projects, various meetings, etc. But it turned out that managing your own family needs a different approach. Well-being of all is the core, everyone (including you, Super Hero Mum!) should be able to fulfill their daily tasks and also find time to relax and have fun!
So even though planning is still my task to do, I could find some adults (grandparents, friends) who are also happy to spend time with my daughter. And – with careful planning – it is a win-win-win situation in the end: everyone can spend quality time with the little one, but nobody is overwhelmed with the duty.
2. Start planning the summer vacation well in time
This year I really got shocked when realized that summer break will be 2 weeks longer than in the previous years… Luckily I already developed years ago an excel sheet, well known by the “summer team” – even their colleagues started to ask lately if they have already received this year’s chart 😅
So after setting up the “summer team” I discuss with all of them their plans, preferences, and availability. In the meantime, I search for summer camp options too – to cover some weeks fully, as well as let my kid have different experiences. It is even better when some of her friends can join the same camp! I know, camps can cost a lot, so vacation planning should also involve including these in your family budget.
What worked for us well (obviously it can be different in other families) was that we are splitting the days into 3 parts: morning (8-12), afternoon (12-16), and evening (16-…). This means that most of the time – when no camp or full-day activity is planned – only a 4-hour slot is booked from one adult’s workday. That amount of time is fun with a kid, who is also looking forward to it, while letting the adult fulfill all the other duties earlier or later the same day.
In my excel the full summer break is planned already in late May – well changes can apply, but at least we have something as a reference. Which, believe me, is already a relief 😀
But if you can’t or do not want to plan that much ahead, a weekly planner can also be helpful. Just to see where are the kids, and where are Mum and Dad on each day, you can use a simple planner too!
3. Have fun!
I mean really, summer is not for tight schedules, find your inner child, have ice cream for breakfast, stay up late to watch the stars, jump in puddles, explore new places… and enjoy the time you can spend together with your kids!