This post is brought to you by Let’s Play, an initiative by Dr Pepper Snapple Group that provides kids and families with the tools, places and inspiration to make active play a daily priority by building and improving playgrounds and donating sports equipment to groups in need. All opinions are my own.
I can’t believe that summer as we know it is pretty much over. Sure, we can still enjoy doing things on the weekends and after school, but that magic of not really having any plans and just going with the flow and letting the kids lead the way has fizzled out. We started school – fifth grade to be exact – and the routine is back in place. The back door won’t be slammed a dozen times as kids go in and out. The hose won’t be left on to flood the yard, the toys are already picked up and the yard looks deserted. The dirt will quickly be washed away (can’t send a dirty kid to school), and the picnic lunches won’t happen as often.
As a work from home mom, I do enjoy when the routine is back in place. Right now, there are just two little ones at home, and it’s a hundred times quieter and calmer. But it’s sad. I feel like I should scoop them up and ignore my work responsibilities and get outside and do something fun.
We parents have to keep them outside and keep their bodies moving, even when summer ends. The fun does NOT have to be over just because they can’t play outside for 8 hours at a time. We have to find new ways to get them outside. It’s our responsibility to help them explore, help them build strong muscles and good motor skills. You don’t have to invest in a gym or create a strict schedule of activities, you just have to be willing to tweak some of your routine or schedule.
Fall sports are a great way to stay active. We started soccer recently, so two times a week we have practice. While the one has soccer practice, the other two exhaust themselves at the playground that’s right there. Literally, it’s like 100 feet from the soccer field and couldn’t be more perfectly positioned. For one hour, two times a week, everyone is having fun and running and screaming.
Another great way that we enjoy time together while being active is going Pokémon hunting. We aren’t super serious about actual training and taking over gyms, we just like to collect them. But it does make a great way to go for a walk, check out a new park, and the kids get really excited about it.
Check out my post on LetsPlay.com for more ideas on how to make memories during the end of summer and beginning of the school year. You can also find lots of ideas for activities that involve active play on LetsPlay.com.
I do wish that we had more summer days left. I feel like because we worked and took a couples vacation that we didn’t get to do some of the things we wanted. We didn’t go swimming as much, we didn’t visit the lake, we didn’t go hiking enough. Maybe we can salvage the rest of the warmer weather and keep the fun times rolling right on through fall! Can’t you just picture going for a hike with all the leaves changing color, crunching under your shoes? Yes! Summer might be ending, but I can’t wait for what’s ahead!