Welcome back! So I know the vacation tips are a tad late considering tomorrow is back to school!!! Lol. Sorry. None the less it could come in handy at some point right.?! We all know and have experienced the vacations where we are not able to take some time off work and spend them with the kids. Unless you are a teacher or send your kid to a camp of aftercare type of program, the struggles are real. Here are my Vacation and Back to school tips.
In my home, we don’t have a full-time nanny. My hubby is self-employed and can occasionally drop in unexpectedly just to check up. And since he is actually busy most days they don’t know when it’s going to happen so I find the kids are always conscious that someone will stop by. But they are just kids after all and some structure comes in handy. My aim is mostly to keep them busy enough so they don’t want to go loitering around outside unsupervised because let’s just been honest, this is not the same world we grew up in.
Now the problem I have is that my eldest is 15 and obviously he has a little more freedom than the 2 smaller ones. I have to keep explaining this, so what I did is, made them sign “Anti-Nag” agreements. This is similar to a cellphone and social media agreement. This can say whatever you want it to.
I have some tips on dealing with teens here
This is the basis of the agreement but like I said it can be anything you feel you need to explicitly say to your little one. Every time there is an outburst just bring out the contract. Make it known once the contract is cancelled or breached there are consequences.
Then, of course, I like to keep them as busy as possible, so they get a daily chore list. And some light reading, which I quiz them on after work. Or we pick some books and that’s what they read, for at least an hour a day, this, however, has to be done during the day. When I get home I want a brief overview of what they read. And we have a little fun. Some board games or a few minutes of hide and go seek etc.
Back to school tips
First things first, create a routine. My kids know depending on the duration of their vacation, it varies. But like the June holidays, it is 3 weeks. So in the first week, they have free rein as far as bedtime goes. Then week 2 they get the usual bedtime + 2 hours. If I am being honest they are so hardwired with their bedtime that for most of the first week they sleep at their normal bedtime, no matter how they try to fight it lol. Then the last week of the holidays it’s back to the normal routine. Because the first day of school is hard enough without me having to be a dragon lady at 6 am.
The day before school starts the boys go for a haircut and my baby girl would have been to a salon (Or most likely the Salon of Zee) the Sunday before. Unless school starts Wednesday or later, in that case, this would happen on a Tuesday. Once they are done at the barber, the boys come home to take a shower and pack their school bags. Make sure they know where everything is. By the time I get home, we do one final check together.
Recently I decided I am no longer making lunch because A) my “baby” is 10. and B) They pack lunches that they actually enjoy and finish. This way I feel they feel like they’re more in control and it takes a lot of the stress off from me, trying to keep everyone happy and fed. With 3 kids it get’s really frustrating trying to pack lunch that ALL of them enjoy and I am not the “what do you” want kinda mom, you will eat what I give you, end of story. So now we eliminate another argument. “Why didn’t you finish your lunch?”.
I make sure they decide ahead of time what’s for lunch after school too. I hate a dirty kitchen, so if we can avoid unnecessary dishes, we do. Because I am the dragon lady!
So you can obviously do what works for you, my biggest tip is to make sure everyone knows what is expected and what makes things a little easier for all parties.
Let us know in the comments, what your tips are for a more successful first day and last day for that matter!
Thanks for stopping by. Have a wonderful day! You’re worth it…