There’s a lot in the media about parents and carers’ surviving’ the summer holidays. But it really needn’t be that bad. Here are some helpful tips to support you.
This ‘fear’ the media love to pour out daily can be draining, but a change of mindset can often work wonders. If you’re dreading something, it often affects your mood, whereas if you put that energy into putting some plans and strategies in place in case things get tough, mentally, you’re in a better place already and you’re prepared for any curve balls that may come your way.
Juggling the holidays isn’t easy, but planning out what you’ll be doing each day gives you something to look forward to and sets expectations. Then, post the planner on the wall so everyone can see what’s happening. Everyone from the young to the old can benefit from this approach by understanding and appreciating what they have to do – especially managing to juggle some mundane tasks with fun things and family time- it teaches them about compromising, commitments, and prioritizing- all essential life skills!
Together, brainstorming ‘things to do’ ideas involving everyone gets them excited.
3. Life skills
Even though it seems like a long time, it will fly by (I promise!). So to thrive rather than survive the holidays, use the holidays to teach some essential life skills as well as let them relax. Whatever their age passing on a skill like sewing or cooking is a great way to pass some time away from technology, and it costs nothing.
4. Lazy days
Make sure you schedule some time for lazy days over the summer. This will help stop feeling overwhelmed and stop everyone from getting tired. Downtime is essential for all.
5. Stop the guilt trip
We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to be amazing parents and carers, but please try to set aside some time for yourself. We often plan too many extravagant days out when often we happiest at home in the garden with a friend. However, a tired carer and an exhausted child, young adult or elderly person is not the best combination, so set aside some time for yourself, even if it’s a bit of time whilst the other watch a movie.
If technology makes it easier to monitor possibilities of seizures so you all get a good night’s sleep, then look at https://alert-it.co.uk/ to see how we can help. And, if it helps to keep a calm house to have a screen for an hour or two – so be it.
6. Magic money tree
The magic money tree – ah, don’t we all wish we had one of those. Explaining about the cost of activities and giving them choices. So, for example, we could go to a theme park which would cost £100 for one day, or we could have ten days out to different parks, playgrounds and ice cream for the same money, which would you prefer?
From picnics at the park, creating your own scavenger hunt or the summer reading challenge at your local Library https://summerreadingchallenge.org.uk, there are so many free activities available.
Perhaps create a nature quiz sheet, this is a perfect activity for a young vulnerable adult or the more elderly. It can make the walk more interesting and also creates talking points along the way.
Cards and memory games is another great form of entertainment for all ages. These can be taken on a trip out or played at home.
Painting pebbles is another low cost idea – you could choose a theme, like Harry Potter and you all create a different character. Hours of fun and all for a few pence on paint. You could even create your own positivity pebbles to keep everyone happy.
7. Sharing is caring
Reach out to other carers who may also be looking for support over the summer, and friends and family are great for a bit of support over the holidays. Don’t worry about asking for favours. Sanity is everything.
The summer holidays should be a time for relaxed routine, fun, and making memories.
We would love to hear any great ideas you have for helping make summer great – please share any tips with us …but most of all, enjoy the holidays.