Monday, June 1, 2009

Camp P!

Another blog mama said she is doing Mama Camp this summer. We call it "Camp P" at our house. When our children were smaller, I tried to keep them at home while I cleaned house, organized closets, and did "my things". Although many of "my things" benefit the whole family, I was ignoring our children to accomplish chores. It backfired. The house was torn up, and I was one angry mama. I vowed to not spend my summers working on my to-do list, but to do things with the children during "Camp P". It made all of the difference!!

There are still many days where everyone must play at home while I clean house & pack bags or run the vacuum. We do have to run errands together too. I just try to do something fun with the children as often as I can.

Here are some ideas:

-Visit a different local park each week. Bring bread to feed the ducks or bring a picnic and enjoy it. One park here even has fountains that the children can run through.

-Play post office one day and write letters or thank you notes. Little children can color. Then, go to the post office & mail the letters. You can discuss our postal system in the car!

-Visit the local library. Check to see if they have storytime. Select good books to read over the summer!

-Have your older children read and then do a book report.

-Pull out fun costumes and let the children create plays. Then, put your things down and actively watch the plays!

-Find things in the house that sound like an instrument and let everyone play in the band.

-Visit your local airport and watch the planes take off. RDU in Raleigh has a great observation area... in the air conditioning!

-Let your children run through the sprinkler--- NAKED.

-Let them jump in puddles & dance in the rain if it rains.

-Wash your cars and splash each other! (These activities can only happen if there are no water restrictions)

-Check your local movie theaters for free or $1 children's movies in the middle of the week! Take your own snacks and enjoy the cool air!

-Visit the pool!!! If you belong to a club, be thankful!

-Ride bikes together or take a walk.

-Choose recipes the children can cook and then shop for the items together and then let the children cook for you!

-Invite friends over for the children.

-Teach the children a new board game!

-Visit your local bakery or Krispy Kreme doughnuts and buy everyone a treat.

-Serve in a local ministry or homeless shelter.

-Have everyone choose 3 or 5 things to give away and then do it!

-Treat everyone to lunch at an old pharmacy with a counter.

-Ride the train (or even the bus) to somewhere close by! Have lunch & return!

-Fly a kite on a windy day.

-Take advantage of the things you never do in your geographical area. Hop in the car for a day trip!

-Visit the zoo or aquarium.

-Go downtown and pretend to be a tourist for the day.

-Sit on your back deck and drink that glass of wine you said you were going to have when you bought the house! Let the children play while you relax a minute!

-Start a summer garden and tend to it as a family!

-Have a lemonade stand! Donate the proceeds to a favorite charity or use the money for a fun treat.

We have quiet time in the summer almost every day. You can read a book or play a game quietly, but you must be in your room and QUIET. This allows baby sis to nap and gives Mama some down time too!


Domestic Diva said...

What great suggestions! Have a great day.
xxxx me

Imjustagirl said...

That is an awesome list!

EntertainingMom said...

I love your list! My kids (not Alexander) are a little too old to run naked through the sprinklers... modesty sets in early these days) We have painting parties... We grab huge sheets of paper and splatter paint with friends and then we hose 'em all off in the sprinkler!

We have relay races and scavenger hunts...

we have bbqs at the beach at the end of the days so that all the daddies can join... we take ferry rides across the Long Island sound... trips in to NYC... we are fortunate to go to Maine every summer and have my folks in Newport... my kids will read a book a week and they will also be allowed to go to the bookstore at the end of the week for a new book... (paperbacks only!) and I have a few hidden gift certificates to our pottery painting store... we'll go to local farms and pick fresh produce and eat the fresh produce and cook the fresh produce... I have a few (a lot!) art projects in mind...We'll hit the track at a local university for a daily run...

As a "graduation" gift the kids will be getting new journals and new markers. Every day they will have to write about (and or draw) their favorite activity of that day. It's a great way to work on their creativity and will be a wonderful thing to have and look back on one day...

The Hayden Family said...

Okay...there is a first time for everything. I took notes from a blog! Loved your list. So nice to get some fresh ideas. Thank you- it's most appreciated. And what lucky little ones you have that get you as a Mommy!

Melissa said...

Oh, thank you thank you thank you for these suggestions! We did the $1 movie today.