Structure vs Stress

Boomer thrives on structure. He is THAT kid. He is a perfect angel at school, thanks in no small part to the great structure that is in place throughout the day. Daddy-O and I are, by nature, very UN-structured. We don’t like ‘making plans.’ We prefer to wake up THEN decide what we feel like doing that day. Supergirl goes with the flow quite easily. She is very laid back and could spend all day laying around doing nothing. Boomer, on the other hand, not so much! He is going going going from the moment his eyes open. He wants something to do, people to talk to, places to go. He is a busy kid. He also likes to know what we are doing BEFORE we do it.

And that leads us to my conundrum… How do I make myself MORE structured? Last summer poor Boomer fell apart, and I feel pretty responsible because I know it is because there was no structure whatsoever. This summer I am trying to be proactive. I want to plan our activities. I want to have ‘days,’ as in Tuesday is Library day, Friday is pool day, etc. I have spent the last few weeks making lists of possible activities including things such as story-time, hiking, water park, free movie times, swim lessons, gymnastics, days at the local farm, etc. I have printed a summer calendar and written everything down on what days they occur.

Now when I look at the calendar there is something written on almost everyday. So I have to find what is enough vs what is too much. Supergirl does NOT want to be going all summer. Boomer would be happy with that. Where is the happy medium? My thought right now is to play it by ear. To know what activities are ‘available’ for the next day, discuss them, and make the decision of whether to go together.
(Except for hiking—that is my newest interest, to force my kids into the wilderness… I have it all planned out including having a backpack, first aid kit, water bottles, snacks, and science journals—we are going to be so in touch with nature it will be crazy!!!)

What are your summer activities, and just how structured are they?


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Erin
    May 27, 2011 @ 22:56:20

    We started a nature journal last year, but I think Calla was a bit young for it. It is something I had planned on doing this summer with her again. Nature is something my kids love already, and I want them to learn more about it. I’ve thought about going to different parks in the area (st. louis county has some neat ones, or so they look like online) and picnicking and letting them just explore. Also, I saw someone online suggests bringing one of those little ten color watercolor paint sets, you know the long one with oval paints? Their kids were more excited to paint sometimes in the journal than always draw.

    Also, Maryville Library, while located in a trailer, has a really cool summer reading program with events with guest performers every Wednesday. They have a reptile guy (I think), magician, etc. and at the end of the summer, if the kids finished their reading goal, there’s a big bouncy house party at the park. You can pick up materials at the library to sign up. I’m sure you could call too, if you wanted.

    Oh, also, the little gym has those summer camps. They are themed weekly, and you can do one day or four, whatever you want. I think, and I’m not sure on this, it was like twenty something bucks for one day. I was planning on sending Calla to one or two for a special day for her. They are three hours, and they do a craft, have a snack, and wear the kids out. She did one last year and she loved it.

    I’m always looking for stuff to do with the kids too, but the downtime is nice, especially for me! I feel your pain! Let me know if you hear of any especially fun activities this summer.


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