We are in the midst of the first beautiful weekend in our area in months, and almost everyone I know is spending as much time outside as they can except me. I’m jealous, but I’m trying so hard to be disciplined and accomplish great things this weekend. I did get out for a few hours last night for a cookout, and our dinner plans involve sitting outside at a restaurant on the great Ohio River. So I’m not torturing myself completely.

Why am I staying indoors? Well, because the kids only have 2 more days of school, and I am determined to go into summer break in an organized manner. I love summer vacation so much, I think that goes back to my days as a teacher. I love having the kids home, and I love going on adventures with them, working on projects with them, and just plain old goofing around. So in an effort to make our summer vacation more enjoyable, I’ve spent the past two days getting organized.
Here’s how:

  • Tackle the “to-do” list. I wanted to get rid of some chores and unpleasant tasks so they wouldn’t be hanging over my head while I was having fun with the kids. I’m quite proud of myself, I shortened the list a great deal. And I cleaned out my home organization binder as well (more on this later, but it’s going to be a great help this summer and beyond).
  • Sign the kids up for classes & camps. I signed Ella & Max up for art classes at the fabulous Baker Hunt Center in Covington, Ella is also signed up for cooking classes, and the older three kids will be taking Swim Lessons. They are really looking forward to these activities. If you live in the Greater Cincinnati area and are looking for great summer camps, check out Family Friendly Cincinnati’s list of summer camps, it’s a great resource!
  • Food Prep. I made several batches of pancakes and some breakfast sandwiches to keep in the freezer for quick & healthy breakfasts on the go. I want to add to this with a few dinners in the deep freeze, for days when I don’t have time to cook because we are on the go.
  • Make a list of FUN things to do on vacation. The kids and I collaborate on a list of things we want to do and see during their summer break. This list has alot of variety…some ideas are simple (a picnic at a local park) and some are grand (day trips to Indianapolis Children’s Museum, hiking at Big Bone). The list doesn’t just include places we want to go, I’ve also added craft ideas & other fun projects. We bought swim club passes this summer, and we can’t wait to use those, but we also want to have some other fun adventures and activities to do. This list will come in handy on rainy days as well…we’ve added things like work on HUGE jigsaw puzzles, finish the library reading log, and other indoor activities. (Feel free to add an idea for our list in the comments section!). As I’ve already mentioned that there are only a few days left of the kids’ holiday, a lot of the activities we are planning are to do with being indoors. But we have already started planning for next summer and the idea of looking into sunriver rentals has been one that has come up quite often. We’ve never visited Oregon before, but it is on our to do list. I just think going somewhere different would be exciting. Having something to look forward to is something fun for the kids too.
  • Clothing Prep. I think that it’s official, the warm weather is here to stay, so it’s safe enough for me to box up the winter clothes. I also washed all of the swim suits, bought new goggles, & organized our pool gear.
  • Plan our family trips. We have two family trips planned this summer, one to a Kentucky State Park for a few days, and one to the beach. It’s not too early to start a list, this will help me from losing my mind when the time comes to pack. I just started a simple packing list and keep it in my binder, so whenever I think of a random item I don’t want to forget, I add it to the list.

So there you have it, that’s how I spent my weekend. And it feels so good to get organized! I feel like these two days are going to make a huge impact on our summer vacation. Now, enough blogging, back to work for me! Tell me though…how are you getting ready for summer vacation?