Like all good things do, this summer is nearing its end. (Boo. Hiss.)
The last days of summer present a unique opportunity to reflect on happy memories, make the most of the time that remains, and gear up for a change in routine.
With Labor Day looming, for most families, the new school year is fast approaching. You can end the summer on a high note with some positive reflection, a healthy dose of togetherness, and a confident look at what’s to come. Here are some ways you can get the most out of the end of summer with your family.
Step out into the world together—in your neighborhood, at the park, at the beach, wherever you like—and enjoy a good, old-fashioned walk.
Share with each other what you are grateful for. What were your favorite parts of this summer? Notice the wonderful environment around you. Make a list of your responses as you walk. You’ll be amazed by the length and variety of your list.
The benefits of being out in nature, moving your bodies, focusing on gratitude, and being together as a family make this activity the perfect storm of health and happiness.
As a bonus, you can file the list for next spring when crafting next summer’s plans.
Scrapbook Your Memories
Check your weather app for an upcoming rainy day and make cherishing your memories the craft du jour. Have your favorite photos printed in different sizes and gather the souvenirs from your summer adventures. Laugh and reminisce about the memories of the past few glorious months as you create a treasure your family can enjoy forever.
For inspiration, consult Pinterest (of course) or this post about creating a “Smash Book,” a much less fussy, easy for little hands version of a scrapbook, by The Realistic Mama.
A Few of Your Favorite Things
Double down on the awesome by circling back to your family’s favorite activities in these last few days. What do you all cherish most about summer? Ice cream? Go for it! Swimming? Get out there! Camp fires? Light it up! Zoo visits? Go wild!
Identify what your family truly loves the most and do more of that.
Get Away for a Last Hurrah
Routine and busy schedules are right around the corner. Why not jet away for one more jaunt of family fun before the summer hits the finish line. Whether your family digs a tent in the woods or five stars at the ocean, or perhaps something in between, if you can make it happen do it!
There is something so magical about family getaways. The combination of the adventure you’re experiencing together with the fact that your away from your regular, day-to-day, make for intensely focused and valuable family time.
Early to Bed, Early to Rise
As you make the most of your days, don’t forget to gradually adjust the beginning and end times.
While relishing all of the wonderful aspects of summer is the name of the game, continuing with late nights and late mornings is not the best idea. Begin to nudge sleep cycles earlier at both ends of the day, while still soaking up the summertime.
If you excel in this area, many advantages await you in those early summer mornings, including low crowds and delightful temperatures.
Set Goals and Boundaries
Take time to ponder the school year ahead while recognizing the aspects of summer that were particularly beneficial for your family. Make note of these and see if you can incorporate them into the months to come.
Before your calendar fills up and life gets a bit busier, allow your priorities and the individual needs of your family members to dictate what you say yes and no to during the school year. Understand what your priorities are before everyone else’s priorities come a knockin.