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Divorced Families and Summertime
Summer vacation is difficult to plan when you are dealing with separation and divorce. Mix in work, camp, and sports and before you know it, you are dealing with smaller windows of time and schedule limitations. Keeping your special time for summer vacation fun is the most important thing of all. Here is the key: Be mindful of all parties and be open minded to all ideas.
Your children are out of school and all that matters to them is having fun. They want to be with their friends and not be split up by parents who don’t get along. They want to be busy and active, yet love to sleep and relax. Below are a few helpful hints:
Schedule your time wisely
Being prepared is half the battle. During the days when you don’t have your children, keep up with your housework so that when you do have them you can have total quality time. If you have conflicting schedules with step children and other parents, try to adjust your schedule so that you can all get more time together. Remember, this is not just about you. Ask your children what they would like to do during their vacation and take note.
Your children have friends, not just families. Make it clear to them that friends are important and that they are welcome to join in or stay over for extra fun. Sometimes letting your children bring a friend on vacation can be the best solution as it gives them time for you and them!
Make other plans
Whether you’re the custodial or non-custodial parent, it is hard to be with your children every minute of the day. Reality is that you have to work, pay bills, cut grass and plan meals. Look for good day camps that offer not just play-time, but appeal to your children’s interests. Check your local on-line offerings and sign them up for art camp, horse camp, computer camps and more. There are some really interesting activities that are often free. Talk with other parents and see if you can carpool together and/or take turns with day trips and activities.
Watch your budget
Fun doesn’t have to be expensive. Kids love to hike, bike and fish. Local and state parks offer a wide range of activities that are often free to the public. Bring a picnic and a project. Painting outside is a great activity for the whole family. Bring a game and/or fishing rods. You will be amazed at how fun it can be when you are outside and together.
It’s your summer too!
Take time to have fun. You have to be balanced to juggle the summer schedule. Go to the gym, meet up with friends and enjoy your time. Your children will notice that you are happy and healthy and want to spend more time with you.
Enjoying the summer means relaxing and spending quality time together. Most childhood summer memories are BBQ’s with friends, pool parties and staying up late watching movies and having ice cream on the deck. Keep it simple and take lots of pictures!
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