June 9, 2009

Making Use Of The Summer Months

Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.

Titus 2: 3-5

I belong to a few different email loops and local homeschool groups. It's so wonderful to have like minded people to fellowship with and to share ideas with. Over the past couple of weeks most of these groups have been winding down for the summer as many take the time to take a much needed vacation or embark upon projects other than the normal school related grind.

I was kind of surprised, however, to hear several people saying that they would like to know who would like to participate in different activities on a daily basis this summer to "get out of the house" because they don't like to "sit around all summer." HUH??? :0(

Don't get me wrong, I am not one for idle time either. I don't enjoy just sitting around my house either doing nothing. But there is SO MUCH to do at home that I can't imagine being bored. For my family once or twice a week is plenty of time to get out of the house. The rest of the time we spend doing activities at home.

So what IS there to do during the summer? Well, whether you homeschool your children or they attend school away from there is much to be done at home during the summer. Here are a few ideas...

Gardening - depending on where you live, it's not too late to start some plants for the summer. What about a vegetable garden? That is not only a nice fun activity for you and your children, but it's healthy to go outdoors and get some sun every day. The fruits of your labor will also help supplement your family's grocery budget.

Sewing - it's a great time to make some nice decorative items for your home or some clothing for yourself and your children. Older children can also be taught to sew. Even boys should know how to mend or sew on buttons!

Cooking - stock up your freezer! Take the time to make a recipe you have been wanting to try. If you don't like to cook or don't' know how, it's a great time to learn or practice your skills. Baking is a great all day activity for children, they love to make things that are good to easy. If you have a garden, use the end of the summer to do some canning or freezing of your summer bounty.

Organizing - sort and organize your closets, drawers, shelves, etc. You'll feel like your home is brand new. If you find a lot of items that are still good that you don't use any more, have a yard sale or start an Ebay store.

Clean - if you didn't get a chance to deep clean your home in the spring, now is the perfect time. Give everything a good scrubbing and get your kids to help.

Read - Take a weekly trip to the library or order some favorites from an on-line book seller. Read books that you have been wanting to read and haven't had time for or better yet read out loud to your children from a well loved classic. When you finish the book have the kids make up dress up and act out part of the story.

Play a game - break out those dusty board games and have some game time each day. Your children will thank you :0)

Exercise - put on some fun music and get moving as a family. This is great to do early in the day so that the little ones will have a nice sound nap in the afternoon.

Practice hospitality - have friends over for the day. Have lunch together and enjoy a visit. Have friends over for dinner on the weekends. Host a tea party for your children and their friends. Have an ice cream social. Have a BBQ. Invite out of town friends or relatives to visit with you for a few days this summer.

Swim - if you are blessed with a backyard swimming pool take the time to use it. Better yet, host a pool party.

Plan for school - if you are a homeschooling mom, now is the time to order your items for the next school year and make a daily school schedule. Plan your activities and field trips. Do your on-line research. Ask your kids what they would like to study next year. If your kids go to a traditional school, start planning what supplies and clothing you will need to get them for the next school year.

Write a letter or make a phone call - get in touch with friends and family members that you haven't spoken to in a while. Encourage your children to do the same.

Charity work - see if there is any way you can serve your church or your community from home. Make baby blankets or baby hats for a local woman's shelter or Right To Life organization. Pack up canned goods or other items for a local food bank or other charity. Make hand made blankets or quilts for a local homeless shelter.

Do some crafting - if you have a craft that you enjoy spend time working on it. If you make a lot of hand made items, consider starting an Etsy store.

Watch a movie - It's pretty hard to find a good, quality movie any more but there are still some out there! Instead of going to the movie theater, make a nice cozy pile of blankets on the floor in your living room, pop some popcorn and watch a movie as a family. Not only will this save you a lot of money at the theater, it is much more realizing for younger children to enjoy a movie at home where they can doze off if they get sleepy.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. There is so much to be done at home. When you do go out for grocery shopping, errands or just for some away from home fun, make good use of your time so that you can be at home the majority of the time. Spending too much time away from home can cause exhausted kids, frustrated mothers, undone chores and too much money spent. Remember that God calls mothers to be keepers at home and we should take pride and joy in our calling. Let's honor God in all we do this summer!


Donetta said...

great idea...who has time to be board?
My kids are so busy all day! They love being home. We do a lot of play dates and hospitality.
Nice to get to meet you.

Erika W. said...

Oh I totally agree! It boggles the mind when someone talks about needing to get out of the house. I love being at home, going about my day, and I try really hard to limit how much running around we do during the week.