As I write this post, all I hear in my head is the chorus to Alice Cooper's song "Schools Out" (cue ugly cry). Of course I'm not ready for school to be out. When schools out, that means I become the kid's primary source of entertainment. I am not cool with that. I'm also not cool with being SUPER busy. I love to do things, but I also love to have down time in the comfort of my home and yoga pants (who am I kidding, I like the comfort of my yoga pants in public too). That being said, I like to balance our summers with a few camps and lots free play.
In the summers, when I was a kid, if the sun was out, so were we. I remember my Mom getting frustrated at my brother and I because she would stand on the front porch calling us to come in for dinner, but we were just too busy to hear her. We, along with the neighborhood kids, would ride our bikes until we couldn't feel our legs, build forts in the woods, play tag well into the evening, and live in our own fairy tale land. It. Was. Awesome!
I am a huge fan of free play. I think it's extremely important for kids to have a healthy imagination. I also think it's important that they be able to entertain themselves. In the summer, I like to do subscription boxes to help cure boredom. There are so many different options, but here are some of my favorite.
I love Kiwi Crate! It's for ages 5-8, but they also have Koala Crate (3-4), Doodle Crate (9-16+), and Tinker Crate (9-16+). My niece and nephews each received a subscription for Christmas and they really loved them. The great thing about this company is that it was built by a mom. All of the projects encourage creativity and curiosity and Mom doesn't have to come up with something to do! Subscriptions start at $19.95/month.
Little Passports has boxes for ages 3 up to 12. Your little one will learn all about the world from regional themes, country themes, and state themes. Each kit comes packaged in an adorable blue suitcase and includes a world map, a passport, welcome letter, stickers, as well as activites and souvenirs that pertain to the monthly theme. Kids also get access to online activities and games. Boxes start at $13.95/month.
This company is great! For only $12/month, your child will receive a letter from a fairy every week (for ages 6-12) or two weeks (for ages 3-5) and every surprise every 6 months! This is my kid's dream come true. The Fairy Mail Co has letters for ages 3-12 and they are sure to inspire wonder, imagination, and help with vocabulary development. Each letter includes stories from the fairy world, words of encouragement, and of course, fairy dust.
This monthly subscription is for the little bookworm. Made for ages 0-12, each monthly box includes 3-4 age appropriate books for your book lover. All books are award winning, from distinguished authors, or from The Association for Library Services to Children. Boxes start at $29/month.
Pley is a unique subscription. It's a rental service for toys! Pley has quite the inventory of toys from brands like Lego, Kinex, American Girl, Disney, Leapfrog, Minecraft, and Star Wars to name a few. Plans start at $19.99/month and include a choice of 375 toys with unlimited exchanges and free shipping both ways. You can play with your toys as long as you want, when you're done, send them back (where they are carefully and extensively professionally cleaned) and receive something new.
I hope some of these ideas will help keep you sane and the kids occupied this summer.