Busy Moms: How To Survive Summer

Summer is the time of year that everyone is allowed to be lazy and be carefree. But, it is also the time of year where kids get restless and desperate for different summer activities. For busy moms, it is important to establish daily routines for the kids and organizing different activities to keep the kids entertained. Here are some tips to achieve this.

White Board of Activities

The summer season is the time of year where kids expect different activities to fill their day. Letting them know what to expect in the day will help you get organized. This is where your whiteboard of activities help. You can make this a daily routine for your family. You can write on your whiteboard the activities that you have planned for the day. A simple list of activities can help organize your schedule and the things that your children will do. This will also keep things exciting for your kids.

The “Bored” Basket

Nowadays, it is become more difficult to keep a kid’s attention as their attention span is becoming slimmer and slimmer. In the summer, it is important to keep them entertained even at home. To get this done, have a basket ready with different toys, craft supplies, and puzzle games. It doesn’t matter how big or small the toy is. If you know what makes your children tick, then it would be easier for you to grab new toys from the store to keep them entertained the entire summer.

A Ready “Go Bag”

Having a backpack stocked with the things you need for an impromptu hike or an impromptu trip to the beach will definitely help save you a lot of time. Pack a bag filled with insect repellant and other things that you need for a family camping. A bag filled with the necessary things for an unplanned beach get-away will also make your life easier. Pack all-purpose baby wipes, sunscreen, lotion, beach towels, change of clothes, goggles, and other things that you think is needed in the beach. You can prepare separate bags for different getaways. Having “go bags” ready will keep things smooth and easy.

Keep Your Coolers Cool

If you have a cooler laying around the house, make sure that it is ready for a getaway in the summer. Keep it somewhere you can easily grab it. Packing your own lunch and snacks will make things convenient and affordable for you. You can easily throw in snack bars, sandwiches, juices, or milk boxes in your cooler whenever you decide to go out for the day. Having a ready cooler will also save you time finding food or drinks whenever your kids feel hungry and thirsty.

Create Your Summer Bucket List

Before the summer season starts, it would also help keep the ball rolling. You don’t have to get fancy when creating your summer bucket list. Make a simple list on a piece of paper. You can place this list next to your whiteboard so it will be easy for you to list the “activity of the day”. You can also brainstorm with your children and family to find out what activities they want to do in the summer. It can be like going for a bike around the lake, or berry picking in a nearby farm. The activities do not have to be complicated or extravagant. All you need to remember is if everyone in your family will enjoy doing the activity or not.

With these five ideas in place, it will be easier for you to plan your summer and your family’s summer activities. Rain or shine, spontaneous trips or not, having things organized will help keep things on track. Enjoy your summer!

Safety Traveling Tips When Traveling Abroad With Kids

Traveling abroad can be very adventurous and fun especially if you have that adventurous side in you. However, traveling abroad with kids is a different kind of story. It can be very stressful to both parents and children. But, this does not mean that you have to limit your travels to where you can bring your car, or within the limits of your community. You certainly have all the rights to go out there and enjoy the fruits of your own labor. For you to enjoy your vacation abroad with kids, are some tips that may help you achieve just that.

  • You have to be realistic. If you are planning a 10-mile hike to enjoy the beauty of the Great Wall in China, then you are out of your mind. You should know that your kids will not be able to keep up with your energy or walk that long or be out with the elements that long especially in a strange environment. This may go well if you carry strollers with you, but that doesn’t sound so practical. If you really want to travel abroad with fun and enjoyment in mind, then you should plan it according to what your kids can do. Try to keep it balanced.
  • Plan and practice it. Before you start booking your ticket, make sure that you have emergency plans laid out for the most common family emergencies, like a child getting lost or being injured. It would help if you give your family members specific jobs to do when you are abroad. Who monitors who, and who does what. You can even tell your 18 months old son or daughter to always grab your hand whenever you are out. You can also tell your kids who to talk to when emergencies occur or which number to dial. Giving them a whistle to carry around would also help. But they might end up playing with it even when there’s no emergency.
  • Keep your photos around. This will be very helpful especially if one of your kids have separated from you (but God forbid it happens). In times of panic, you will not be able to think straight and will not be able to provide the authorities what they want to know in terms of how your kid look like or what they were wearing on the day it happened. One tip that is very useful is taking a photo of your kids before you go out for an adventure on a daily basis. That would make things very current and accurate for you.
  • Security and Blanket. Decide who will act as the security of your entire family or who will be the blanket when you travel. The “security” will be the one to get in line and buy tickets, talk to locals or tourist guides, or to keep an eye for any danger on the streets. The other parent will be the “blanket” of the entire family. This parent will be responsible for all the needs of the entire family. The “blanket” should know where each family member is, watch for any signs of a heat stroke or prevent one before it starts occurring, keep medicine and track which has been given, or mediate any family dispute. If you are a single parent, you can always ask your eldest child to be the blanket for your family.
  • Be hands-on. If you are traveling with preschoolers or kindergarteners, make sure that they know that they should always hold your hand (at all times), especially when you are out and about exploring the area. Each kid should be told which parent to hold whenever you are out with the crowd. Children can easily get lost in a very crowded environment and it is for this reason that they should always be by your side holding your hands. Knowing which kid is holding whose hand will also let you know that your kid is present. Otherwise, each parent will assume that the kid is holding the other.
  • Assign a place to meet. This is very helpful, especially if you are going to a new place. If by any chance, one of your kids get separated from you, then you would know where to look for as a place has been assigned when this kind of situation arises. This assigned place should be very visible and safe for anyone to be there. If you have a location map, give it to your child with the “X” mark on the spot where you are supposed to meet. This will help kind adults guide your child to that location.

The safety of your family should be a priority whenever you are traveling with kids abroad. With the tips above, it would be easier for you to plan, execute, and enjoy your vacation without worrying who does what. Enjoy your travels!

Mommy Tips: How To Balance Work and Family Time

One of the many things that every working mom may face at work or at home is time management. It is also important to know that everyone around cannot do everything done in a single timetable. If you are already used to doing a “To-Do List” when you still don’t have a baby, then managing your time now would not be that difficult. You just have to add a few more things on your list to get you organized.

To help you get organized, here are some tips that you may consider following:

  • Make use of your lunch breaks. If like everyone else in the working world, you enjoy a one-hour lunch break every work-day, it is recommended that you use this time to accomplish as much as you can on your To-Do List. If you come to think of it, that one-hour lunch break could sum up to five hours of free time from Monday to Friday without your kids around. If you have personal tasks that can be done in less than an hour, then you should try doing it on your lunch break.
  • Make use of technology. With the presence of technology in every day life routine, it would be very convenient of you have technology on your side. One of the many things that you can do to take advantage of technology is make use of free mobile applications that you can use to remind yourself of any pending tasks that need your attention. Mobile apps like Evernote or Wunderlist are very helpful with this. You can say goodbye to sticky notes when you have this on your mobile phone. You can also make use of cloud servers like Google Drive to save your coupons. Who doesn’t like discount coupons, right?
  • Plan your next day. It may sound so tedious doing this especially after juggling different tasks from work and at home but doing so will help you organize your time better. If you already have a plan in mind, it will be easier for you to go on with your day knowing all the things that need to be done – urgent or not. Also, if you are able to pack lunches for your husband, children, and yourself the night before, your mornings would be so much easier. You won’t feel the need to rush and get things done quickly.
  • Don’t be afraid to delegate. You are not superwoman or wonder woman who can get things done in the speed of light. Thus, delegating some task would be very helpful to you. You can make a To-Do List for the entire family. You can make this your routine so everyone will make it a habit of checking the To-Do List made by you. This can be very helpful, especially on the weekends when you have a lot of cleaning and organizing to do. If your children are old enough to make their beds and clean their room, you can make them so. One tip that is very useful is changing the Wi-Fi password and only giving it to them once their tasks are done. Awesome, right?
  • Learn to let go. You have to remember that you can only do so much in a day in a given time. Learn to let go. It is always possible that the things you need to do can’t be done on a certain time that you have scheduled it. You can always add it on your next To-Do List and make it a priority over other tasks.