How are we already 9 days into July? Wow.
Since I had Brennyn (and stopped working), Kaya has remained in daycare 2 full days a week. At the beginning it was to give me one on one time with our new baby. But then she stayed on because she adored it and I could really use the break (or as much of a break that still having one child at home brings).
At any rate, I decide to pull her out of daycare for the summer before she begins full-time Kindergarten in the fall. I do so for several reasons. One being we could use the money to put towards summer fun. Two being we will be gone for at least 3 weeks of the summer so she’d be missing days anyhow. Three being this is the last time I will have my girl full-time before she begins 13 years of school.
The. Last. Time.
So it is, with purpose, joy and gratitude, that I embark on this summer of fun. Appreciate it. Revel in it. Embrace it.
Since I can.
Since I have that luxury- being a stay-at-home mom. A role that permits me time. Precious, precious time.
Know that I do not take it for granted. This Time I have. I may not have a job, but I take my job very seriously. Mothering.
Let me be real. I was nervous taking Kaya out of daycare. What the hell was I going to do with 2 kids, by myself, 5 days a week without losing my mind? There is only so much ‘Pretend Princess’ that a Mamma can take!
But if I do my job well, the truth is, there is an unlimited supply of activities to do. That we can all enjoy. So this summer, we have at least one ‘new/special/innovative/curious’ activity a day. Which, I have discovered, works magic in taking care of the rest of the day too.
Oh this summer, it is going to be (already is) GOOD!
9 days into July and we are going strong:
- Canada day Celebrations! BBQ, playground, anthem singing, farmer’s market, pre-birthday lunch and, well, come on, it’s Canada day, there must be HOCKEY!
- Birthday fun as previously posted!
- Science World with Gammy and Gampa. Puzzles and giant pianos and games where farting is the winning finish… Really, you can’t go wrong!
Plus our ticket comes with an Omnimax movie included. Problem is the timing only allows for a Beaver show which does not overly appeal. Still, we go since it is included. And it blew me away! Beavers are cool freakin creatures. And this is where it hits me that I really need to be open to whatever opportunities arise this summer. Because the next day Kaya is playing in her water & sand table and creates this amazing Beaver dam. Which reminds me that not 2 minutes from our house is a real beaver dam. So, after dinner we take a family bike ride to go see a real, live, in progress Beaver Dam. So cool!
- The ABCs of Yoga for Kids- I can not say enough about this book. Bought it from our last Scholastic order and it is quite simply, brilliant. Bought the girls a pink yoga mat, cut it in half to make child sizes and let the Yoga begin. Okay, Yoga with kids is very, very different from regular Yoga. First of all, giggles are mandatory.
Second, there is a lot of running around and flailing and oh, some body slamming too. But then there are moments, where a rhyme talks of breath for instance, when we watch our bellies going in and out and everything feels so peaceful and calm and right.
We first attempt the alphabet but find spelling our names by Yoga pose is much more enticing. Next time may be summer words, or bug ones or silly ones or if Kaya has her way, poo ones!
Here is Kaya doing Butterfly pose after racing upstairs to get her butterfly wings to match! Ah kids, masters of in the moment…
- Tweaking the routine, just a slight bit, is all that is necessary to invigorate the day. On this day, instead of chalk art, I make chalk paint. Cornstarch, water and food colouring. We grab some paint brushes, a paint roller, put one colour in a spray bottle and we have ourselves a graffiti good time!
- Summer sun is soul candy. Hot days spent playing in a kids pool, splashing at the water table, eating freezies… For a bit of novelty though, I give the girls some coloured ice cubes to play with. A few sets meld together when I fill them too full making an ugly, dark blue or black but all Kaya sees is the pink and purple ones anyways. Plus it turns into a bit of a science lesson when the black ones melt, separating into their original colours! Playing with coloured ice is fun, but creating tie-dye art on an old, unused white curtain is even more so. And when the girls fingers go numb, we pull it all into the sun for the grand finale of melts. While they play on!
- Gammy got the girls butterfly nets so it becomes Kaya’s mission in life to catch a butterfly!
After swim lessons we head out with snacks, nets, and our Outdoor Colour Matching game to a local flower garden. We match flower colours, have ourselves a picnic overlooking geese bathing and by god, we catch a butterfly! Two actually! Well, not catch so much as place the net overtop it while we observe and marvel, then release as it flitters away.
- Another hot day takes us to the Ocean! Porteau Cove is all about exploration and treasure hunting for us. Kaya scales giant logs while Brennyn finds tunnel ones. We play with seaweed and look for starfish. We wade in creeks first, then the ocean. We race on the dock, watch for scuba divers and collect rocks. On this day, we find more treasures than our usual rocky and driftwood ones. We find 2 ladybugs. And we find a caterpillar nest. A first hand look at the lifecycle of a butterfly after our butterfly hunt, a full-on butterfly day and reading over and over Velma Gratch and the Way Cool Butterfly. Kaya is thrilled! Oh, okay, me too, me too!
- Clouds roll in. Cool air too. A perfect day to pull out the huge box that Brennyn’s birthday presents arrived in and make a… CASTLE! I put the girls in their room to play while I quickly cut it out, then call them down for their surprise. Not surprisingly, they are tickled! Really. Kaya giggles as though a Tickle Monster has attacked. They play for a bit before Kaya blurts “Mamma, this castle is UGLY. We need to decorate!” Indeed my girl, indeed. Craft boxes are pulled out and we glam up the castle. Which quickly becomes a drive-thru restaurant, reading nook, and jail too. Kids are fun!
This summer? F U N!
Please do comment with any inspirations, ideas and suggestions of your own. I would love any and all recommendations!