Summer is here! And we are easily relieved of not having the restrictions the morning routine and school’s schedule (whether you homeschool or not), and at the same time burdened to keep your child’s boredom levels at bay. It’s an odd mix. We’re crux between, “let’s do nothing & go no-where” to we need “something” to do.
This is my list to fill in the gaps. My list, the list, of things that I had wished when the school year started back, I or the kids, had done during our free, no-pressure time.
1. Grandparents Day Gifts
I always, always, always forget about the Grandparent’s Day Cards and gifts. I mean, during the summer, or earlier in the year, I will have these just fabulous ideas. Or I will see something and say, “Yes, I am going to get that or have the kids make that this Grandparent’s Day. The grandparents are going to love it!” And when the time comes, we’re usually two weeks in of school starting back. The dust has just settled between their new schedules, all of the varying information, making sure that I’ve got all of the (right) uniforms that we’ll need. (*Parents: You know that there can be a slight descrepancy between the uniforms that you bought over the summer online & thought they’d work & the ones that actually “work” for them.), and information about their first fundraisers.
Before I know it, it’s the week of Grandparent’s Day & I don’t have a gift, but I will have one, handcrafted by me or the kids and it will be mailed out with hand-picked or handmade cards by Tuesday. Eventhough, I am having the thoughts on Monday – the day before – and I didn’t factor in homework time, and meal time & promising that they’ll be play time or a fun story before bed.
It’s Friday of the week OF Grandparent’s Day & unless I am going to magically come up with the list of supplies that I’ll need for that cute idea that I just saw online & make everyone’s focus cooperate AND get it out in the mail in the next 12 hours – you guessed it. My great idea & or gift is not making it to the grandparents in time.
Additionally, the chances of my plan to contact the local nursery & or florist and get someone on the phone that could set up plant delivery or pick up with a special note (without paying a fortune -through a florist at least) in that short amount of time, are slim.
So, what is my solution?
My solution is, in the middle of the summer, when it seems like there’s nothing to do – get on Pinterest, collect your list of great gift ideas, and get to crafting or buying what you need.
I find that grandparents LOVE all of those cute fish-on-the-hook grandparent’s pictures:
Or the little cute cards, where the shape of your child’s hand pops out:
However, if you wait, you’re likely going to run out of time to get your crafting done, or other things that are attached to the school year are going to take precedence. And there you’ll be, grabbing a pre-made card from the supermarket and signing it from all the kids – and getting it there a day or two late.
Another option, would be to put together one of those nice photo books. Again, something that takes thought and time AND you and I both know that the coupons will be in favor of those that think ahead. Those that, um, I don’t know, maybe have the book(s) already cued up and ready to go two weeks prior to the holiday on their site..? (*P.S. That is never me, but if you & I will think ahead then it will be!)
Be intentional & let the grandparent’s day gifts be the FIRST thing on your list of Summer to-do’s!
2. Back-to-school teacher gifts
Okay, this one is priceless for me. Why? Because I distinctly remember sitting there with the mason jar and the lid, and the craft brush, and the paint…
I did not have a realistic expectation of the amount of time or supplies it would take me to get my finished product to turn out like the one in the picture.
First of all, I grabbed the matte paint & not the glossy paint. And then I remembered that I actually needed to be there an hour before I was originally thinking. And I needed a printable to go with it – and – I just ran out of time & my child walked into the open house WITHOUT a gift for her teacher.
Are these gifts required? No. A necessity? No, not that either, but you want or at least, I want my child to walk in the door, letting the teacher know that they’re there to be a gift. There with a sense of appreciation of all of the effort for things that he/she will be putting forth during the school year.
Secondly, if I or my child can walk in the door with something that can help the teacher: like a gift card or some pencils, crayons, hand sanitizer – something. Something, will be much better than nothing. And something well-thought out & well-intended would be best. That is why, your back-to-school teacher gift has made it second on my list.
3. First Day of School Signs
Are you the mom that it hits just moments before your kid walks out the door, that you’ve got no first day of school sign for them to take their picture with before the head back to school for their very first day back? Are you that mom? Have you ever been that mom?
*Nervously bites nails.*
“No, me neither.” Lol!
Let’s not be “that mom” and let’s find & print and frame, the sign of our choice. That’s right, frame it now, baby. Just go ahead and print it AND frame in and drop it in a drawer with all of your other back to school stuff.
The night before back-to-school, have your glass-less “First Day of School” sign somewhere near the door they’ll be leaving out of. I say glass-less frame because the chances are, with the best laid efforts, the door will slam, the book bag will brush the sign and somehow, by some weird, freak, I-just-want-everything-to-turn-out-right chance, the glass in the frame will get broken.
Even better, if you can, have the frame in a large ziplock bag to keep it from getting wet & now you’re good.
Ah……I feel relieved already 😉
4 & 5. Handmade Thanksgiving and/or Christmas cards (for everyone from the bus driver to the mail man & everyone in between).
You mean well. And you do actually appreciate everything that your bus driver does, or the mail carrier does, and you want to show them your appreciation, but it ends up being the last thing on your list. Or that thing that just adds to “one more thing to have to do before the holidays.” You don’t want to permanently be in “wishing that it was over” mode, right before Christmas or Thanksgiving, but it can get that way.
You want to thank everyone. You want them to feel that Christmas-love, but in spite of best efforts during that time of year, you’re really just trying to keep up.
That is why the summertime is the PERFECT time to, put this on your check list and say, “If there’s any five things that I can do? This is what I am going to do to stay ahead of the game this summer.
The kids can complete one project per week. Print out the list. Leave it on the fridge, and let everyone know: if we get bored or having any downtime, this is what we’re going to do. You’ll feel so accomplished from having done so!