Surviving Summer – Kid Edition

I am melting.

Winter turned to summer overnight and my mind and body need time to adjust.  As I recall, it was just snowing on Mother’s Day.  Now, three weeks out, it is sweltering.

I find no shame in saying that I am wimpy, a fair weather female at my best; however, temperatures are rising, school days are rushing past in a flurry of last-minute performances, and the kids have transformed into rambunctious rascals.  How will we parents survive this summer’s frantic demands for fun?

I have a few tips to help you keep your sanity as you survive and possibly even enjoy this summer with your kids.

* Forget showers.  A regular dunk in a well-chlorinated pool not only kills germs, but it will make your children smile.  There’s nothing better than a grinning, sanitized child.

*  Buy your children cheap clothes.  Fashion is for adults.  Kids need quantity, not quality.  They will lose shirts, leave socks by the lake, mutilate sneakers, and trade swim trunks.  Do not expect them to return for lunch wearing all their clothes.

*  Water + Mud = FUN

*  Buy stock in cheap ice-pops.  You can pass them out to the entire neighborhood through a slightly cracked window.  Unless you live in a dirt hut, do not allow the children back inside for drinks.  Trust me.  Ice-pops also work on bumps and lumps.

*  After the children have gone outside, lock your front door.  Remember Water + Mud = FUN.  It also = work for YOU.

*  Don’t plant anything you are not willing to display in small jars and vases throughout your home.  If it is growing, your child will pick it.  If it is growing in your neighbor’s yard, your child is twice as likely to pick it.  Get ready to apologize profusely and pray none of your neighbors are members of the local garden club.

*  If you have a vegetable garden, understand that no fruit will grow to full maturity.  You will have baby everything – baby carrots, baby corn, baby peppers, baby (green) tomatoes, baby beans, etc.

*  Band-aids are infused with miraculous healing powers.  Use them.  Band-aids decorated with cartoon characters also provide pain relief.

*  Understand no child has ever died from eating too many hot dogs.  Ease your mind and purchase a bottle of vitamins.

*  While shopping for linens, including towels and washcloths, be inspired by MUD.  Embrace brown.

While this list is not exhaustive, I do hope it helps.  Please feel free to add your advice in the comments and remember, have FUN!

Happy Long Summery Memorial Day Weekend!

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  1. I echo Anah74 in that I recently was digging in a flowerbed and unearthed a ridiculously expensive Under Armour shirt. Of course that kid is wearing it still with holes and mold spots, but seriously what is the point? Can’t they just live in the swimsuits with the breathy inserts? I’ve started buying the swimsuits that look like shorts, and then it’s all golden.

    Your Flav-O-Ice strategy is glorious unless your children (like mine) are sensitive to food dyes and colors, and then, you will find yourself fighting those Tupperware ‘popsychle’ pieces as you try to make inexpensive fruit juice pops. (Yes, I spelled it like that on purpose!)

  2. Love it! So true about the mud. In the summer, mud is your friend. It can keep a child occupied for days…

  3. Remove any decorator rugs from high traffic areas; replace with towels or other textiles that can be machine-washed. Or thrown into the pool with the kids… :-)
    Don’t forget the cheap Kool-Aid. Preferably without red dye #4…
    Check during the day to make sure your outside spigot and hosepipe have been turned off to allay fears of a high water bill or turning your backyard into Lake Michigan. Floating patio furniture isn’t pretty…
    Maybe a Clorox pen is a good investment…tie it to your fridge or sink faucet, though.
    Keep emergency numbers handy, including parents that might disappear for the day while their kids are in your pool.
    Think of all of us school teachers that are smiling on a beach somewhere…or just passed out in bed at home. Either is good.

  4. i have 6 kids and know exactly what you are talking about. it is all too true! thanks for the reminder about brown towels, i need to get some more. they don’t go with anything (color) in the house, but dirt. lol sometimes i just buy a bunch of white towels so i can bleach them, remember what jill said about conducting mold experiments.

    as for lost clothes, don’t forget to go and patrol the backyard once a week for lost clothes, towels, and shoes. Don’t send the kids out, they won’t find them even if they are in, on, and under your playground equipment, hanging on the porch or side of the pool or sometimes all the way out at the chicken coop. lol

  5. i’m in total agreeance. esp. re: cheap clothes!

  6. My 3 yr. old grandson and his mama live with me…..I thought this tip list was so funny….but I laughed especially hard at the one about hot dogs….Ha-ha.

  7. That same pool water has healing powers for cuts and scrapes too! ‘Course remember, it better be over chlorinated with kids swimming in it…if you catch my drift!

  8. robinaltman says:

    Nice list! I like the cheap ice-pop idea. Truer words were never spoken. May I put in a word for BJ’s or Sam’s club? My boys and their friends have turned into Doritos with legs.

  9. woo! a list!!!! ;-)

  10. Well, I abstained from having children just so that I could continue to enjoy white sheets. Whew! Y’all have fun!

  11. Hee Hee. Do you have any advice for husbands who have the summer off too?

  12. Grow accustomed to the odor of kid sweat. Convince everyone it’s a new fragrance because it will linger around your home–especially in their bedrooms and near where you keep the dirty laundry. I say “near” because we all know they won’t actually put their stinky clothes in the hamper. Unless the clothes are also wet. In which case they will bury them in the hamper in order to conduct mold experiments.

    Not that this ever happens to me.

  13. Great advise! I like it!

    I can so relate to the well-chlorinated pool being a substitute for showers!


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