Save Your Sanity With These 6 Parenting Tips For Summer

Mom and Daughter Playing

Summer means freedom, especially for kids. Except this time, you’re feeling trapped smack-dab in the middle of a global pandemic. There were no how-to survival guides on parenting during school lockdown restrictions and you’re desperate for new ideas. Now, you’re trying to figure out how to stay sane this summer, while you’re juggling more time with the kids at home with fewer things to do, and no summer camps to give you both a break. It’s mid-July, you’re stressed and out of ideas. It’s honestly a miracle you’ve made it this far  and you’re frantically searching up parenting tips for the summer.

We feel you! Here at Union Gospel Mission, the low-income families we work with have also been hit hard. Facing an added financial burden and a shortened list of summer activities, it’s a struggle to keep kids engaged and learning during summer pandemic restrictions. This summer, we at UGM are helping lift some of the weight off their shoulders. We’re delivering weekly activity kits that kids can do at home, and adapting our regular summer day camps so kids can still make those special summer memories.

Here are 6 ‘summer sanity savers’ for you to do while stuck at home with your kids – courtesy of our UGM Families Team!

1. Bake goodies at home

Whatever your weakness – a sweet or savoury tooth – you can bond with your kids making cookies, brownies or even homemade bannock together, while teaching them a thing or two in the kitchen!

Child baking

Image from Unsplash

2. Build your own terrarium 

All you need is a small plant, glass terrarium or jar, dirt, some fun rocks and decorations and you’re set! This DIY really brings out kids’ curiosity and nurturing side, turning them into proud plant parents who will lovingly dote on their little one, doing their best to keep it alive through the summer heat.

DIY Terrarium

3. Design duct tape wallets & keychains

These old-school favourites are making a come-back! The key here (pun intended) is to keep sticking the duct tape together on the sticky side and folding it to create the shape you want. Your kids will be rushing to fill them with their pocket change and most prized-possessions!

Duct Tape Wallet

4. Create custom Sharpie-decorated mugs

You can enjoy your morning coffee while being inspired by your child’s imagination! Whatever pattern or design they dream up, they can draw with Sharpie onto a blank mug and bake in the oven with your help, capturing their creativity for years to come. 

5. Bike riding ‘tour’ to different locations

Who needs Tour de France when you can have your own PNW custom bike tour —  jam-packed adventure pit-stops? Whether it’s taking in the sights at Stanley Park and the Seawall, going to your kid’s favourite playground, or taking the plunge at an outdoor swimming pool, your tour can be full of fun, adventure, and exercise all in one! 

Child Biking

Image from Unsplash

6. Make your own outfit & have a photoshoot

Forget Value Village for dress-up. You’ve got all the time in the world to make your own outfits! Show your kids that tie dye is cool again. Indulge their creative hearts with DIY bracelets and necklaces. And for kids who want to go for an even wackier look, break out the face paint and temporary tattoos. And lastly, did it even happen if you don’t ‘gram it? Top off the festivities with a photo shoot — pro-tip: use wrapping paper as a backdrop to capture your kids’ (in)sane summer look! 

DIY Tie-Dye

Image from Unsplash

Yes — this summer it’s harder than ever for us all to feel safe, sane, and healthy. But these parenting tips for summer will give your family fun memories for years to come — all while keeping your kids learning and engaged!

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By Rachael Allen