Make the Most of the Last Days of Summer

By Jennae Petersen
September 5, 2014
Jennae Blog Post - swimming

My kids love summer, and even though it’s almost over, we’re still looking for fun activities before the school year heats up.

These days, it's too easy for kids to spend all their time with electronics: smartphones, tablets, video games — there's a lot to do that requires a screen. My husband and I want to make sure our kids spend time being active and using their imaginations, so we try to find ways to keep them otherwise occupied.

Here are the some of the ways my family will be making the most of these last days of summer.

1. Go Swimming
I don't think I've ever suggested a pool day and had the kids decline. We're fortunate enough to live in a community with a pool for residents, but even if you don't, there are other ways to enjoy the water. Find out if there's a lake with swimming access nearby, a YMCA or a public pool with free or low-cost entry.


2. Enjoy the Great Outdoors

This can mean anything from camping in the backyard to walking the trails at a local park. My family likes to spend the day at the Chattahoochee River, attempting to fish. I say attempting because as many times as we've done this, we've never caught anything. Maybe it's our technique, or maybe the fish are smarter than we think. Either way, we still have a great time.


3. Encourage Creativity with Crafts

This kind of activity is awesome for parents, because you can give the kids free rein to do it alone. Create a craft box that includes paper, pencils, crayons, markers, glue, felt and any other craft supplies that are age-appropriate for your children. This summer, my kids have been on a crafting kick. They've been making jewelry out of all kinds of materials, from rubber bands to pipe cleaners and fabric.


4. Camp Out at Home

When I was little, one of my favorite things to do was build forts and tents in the living room. I used cardboard boxes, folding mats, chairs, sheets and more. I seem to have passed this interest on to my daughter. She can spend hours crafting the perfect tent. She makes up passwords that we all have to use if we want to get in, and she’ll sit inside and get lost in a book. She also loves spending the night in the living room inside her tents.

She loves this so much that we made her a collapsible tent out of just a few pieces of wood, some wooden dowels and a sheet. Check out the tutorial.

I think we’ve done a pretty good job of keeping the kids on their toes this summer. What’s on your family's to-do list? How do you keep your kids away from the myriad screens they have access to on a daily basis?

Walmart Mom blogger Jennae Petersen blogs at GreenandGorgeous.net to educate you, entertain you and provide you with everyday tips for making your life more beautiful, enjoyable and sustainable. She’s here to share her experience, her sense of style, her struggles and her victories, in hopes that she can prove that living well is completely attainable, no matter where life may find you.