How to Plan an Amazing Summer for the Family

Ready or not, summer’s around the corner, and it’s time to prepare for fun in the sun and having the kids home.

Regardless if your children attend school or are homeschooled, summer means a change in routine and life for all.

If you’re like me, wondering what’s a mom to do get ready for summer and to build memories with her children, may this help you plan an amazing summer for the family and prepare for those lazy days ahead.

How to Plan an Amazing Summer for the Family Faith Along the Way

1. Adjust your expectations

Maybe I am the only one that imagines a summer of sweet family fellowship and memories made with exciting adventures, but let’s be realistic.

Every time I have lofty dreams of family experiences, I am disappointed at how real life unfolds.  I can protect my heart by adjusting my expectations, remembering that there is no such thing as the perfect family or perfect memories.

In fact, some of the best family times are when we can look back and laugh at how life unfolded in an expected way. Start now, praying for memorable times but letting go of the need for perfection.

2. Use activity jars

Start planning ideas now to keep those kiddos busy and engaged. Brainstorm projects, camps, and experiences to choose from, so when summer hits, you’ll already have some solid ideas of activities to enjoy together.

Having summer activity jars stocked with things to do helps combat boredom and gets the kids excited about choosing the experience for the day.  You may also consider having jars for indoor fun, outdoor fun, and/or based on the cost of the activity.

Factor in big, grand experiences, and small daily activities, too.  Don’t forget to check your local parks and rec department for camps, sports, and even community based events to enjoy.

3. Get the FREE Mom’s Summer Survival Guide for tips on making the most of the summer

Do you wish you had a guide full of fabulous ideas for summer survival in all aspects of mom life?  Look no further! Subscribe to Faith Along the Way and you’ll receive the FREE e-book, Mom’s Summer Survival Guide, in your inbox!

Subscribe and you will receive this fabulous tool to help you enjoy the summer in all aspects of your life, while making memories with the family.

Mom's Summer Survival Guide Cover Faith Along the Way

4. Prepare a summer budget, allotting money for activities and family fun

Summer fun can be costly, with kids begging to do budget-breaking activities.  Start early and set a summer fun budget, planning the larger trips first, and working with the money you have left for small, daily fun.

Use that budget to determine boundaries for activities and teach your children about budgeting at an early age. Who doesn’t want to raise financially smart children?

As summer approaches and the weather warms, may we embrace the memories made with our children by preparing for an amazing summer ahead!  Moms, you’ve got this!

How do you prepare for the summer?  How do you keep your kids busy and entertained?

Don’t forget to subscribe to receive Mom’s Summer Survival Guide! 

About Sarah Ann

Sarah Ann is a perfectly imperfect wife and mother, and is thankful for the saving grace of the Lord. When she’s not busy folding yet another load of laundry or comforting a crying child, she enjoys studying God’s Word, writing, and spending time with authentic friends. She's passionate about equipping women to live with intentional faith, family, health, and home at Proverbs31Mentor.com. Join her for biblical encouragement and practical lifestyle tips to help you live on mission for the glory of God.

22 Comments

  • comment-avatar
    Sarah Koontz {Grounded & Surrounded} May 6, 2015 (4:35 pm)

    It’s official, I am ready for summer! I love all of your ideas, and can’t wait to get my copy of your Survival Kit….us Moms need all the help we can get! Thank you for including our #ETHANproject in your post. We are looking forward to connecting with other moms who want to “ENJOY the HERE and NOW” with their kiddos this summer!
    Sarah Koontz {Grounded & Surrounded} recently posted…Motherhood is a lot like Candy LandMy Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 7, 2015 (6:25 am)

      I love the idea of the #ETHANproject and can’t wait to join in the fun! Thanks for taking the guess work out of summer for me and lots of other moms, too.

  • comment-avatar
    Katie Vance May 7, 2015 (6:33 am)

    I LOVE that your #1 is to adjust expectations. This is my exact plan for summer. Thanks for sharing!

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 7, 2015 (8:38 pm)

      Me too, Katie! I was working out some details for summer just today, but going with the flow and adjusting expectations is such a huge part of it. Happy summer!

  • comment-avatar
    Clare Speer May 7, 2015 (8:36 am)

    Wow – such practical wonderful ideas!!!!!! I loved summer (especially when my kids were small) because it was a little bit of a break on us Moms from the usual “hustle and bustle”. But you’ve got a “game plan.”!!!!!! Enjoy!

  • comment-avatar
    Gina B May 7, 2015 (9:32 am)

    These are excellent tips! The summer is coming in way too fast for me, but I do need to start planning. Thankfully, we have a big backyard and I can move my computer into the sunroom so I can work while I watch the kiddos play!
    Gina B recently posted…Lessons from Mothers of the Bible: 7 Ways to Teach Your Kids About GodMy Profile

  • comment-avatar
    Bonnie Lyn Smith May 7, 2015 (11:24 am)

    Great list! I know some of us moms start pushing the panic button around May 1st every year wondering how we’ll organize our summers. I love having the kids home but not trying to entertain. We do a lot of service projects (help with Vacation Bible Schools, inner-city mission, etc.). Pinning!
    Bonnie Lyn Smith recently posted…What Your Mom Really Wants for Mother’s DayMy Profile

  • comment-avatar
    Susan Gaddis May 7, 2015 (11:57 am)

    What a helpful post! Our women’s ministry shared some great ideas on preparing for summer with you kids this last Sunday. I’m passing your post on to our women’s group as you’ve added so many things we hadn’t thought about. Thanks!
    Susan Gaddis recently posted…The Best Way to Live Your Legacy and Finish the RaceMy Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 7, 2015 (8:36 pm)

      Thank you so much, Susan! It sounds like you have a great women’s ministry at your church. What blessing! Happy summer!

  • comment-avatar
    Jennifer J. Chow May 8, 2015 (12:08 am)

    The activity jars are a great idea! Every year I try to plan the schedule out right before summer, but I think it would be better to accumulate all the ideas and stick them in the jar over the year.

    I’m a little behind in getting all the classes and camps lined up, so wish me luck!
    Jennifer J. Chow recently posted…My Writing Community is like a Japanese Puzzle BoxMy Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 8, 2015 (8:57 pm)

      That’s a great idea, Jennifer! I am behind on planning things, too, and am just realizing that summer is almost here! Seriously, our schools get out next week! Crazy early!

  • comment-avatar
    Heather @ My Overflowing Cup May 11, 2015 (6:29 pm)

    I love all of these tips, Sarah Ann, but #1 and #5 are my favorite. Thinking these things out ahead of time really help decrease disappointment.

    Congrats, again, on your new book!

    May He continue to fill your cup to overflowing, my friend.
    Heather @ My Overflowing Cup recently posted…Not A Typical Mother’s DayMy Profile

  • comment-avatar
    Starla J @ Pressing In and Pressing On May 12, 2015 (4:26 pm)

    Love this… Especially #1!
    Starla J @ Pressing In and Pressing On recently posted…The Great Exchange.My Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 18, 2015 (6:38 am)

      Me, too! I am all about #1!!!

  • comment-avatar
    Leanne | The Transplanted Southerner May 14, 2015 (10:03 am)

    I am definitely having to adjust expectations this year. My oldest is about to start his first job, my youngest has joined a competitive gymnastics team which will take up several afternoons each week (but he loves it). I’m used to laid back, sleep in, head to the pool with a cooler summers…and I think this one will be more fast paced. I am for sure scheduling so “me” time when I can for those lazy pool days!
    Leanne | The Transplanted Southerner recently posted…Thursdays with Mother Nature: Make Your Own Bathroom Cleaners (1 oil blend, 4 powerful cleaners!)My Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 18, 2015 (6:36 am)

      Good for you! I’m realizing that each summer will be different than the last and learning to go with the flow more. 🙂

  • comment-avatar
    Hatton May 16, 2015 (6:35 am)

    Great tips! Adjusting expectations is a big one – we try to have plans but not a tight schedule to keep flexible and minimize disappointments. Excited summer is here!!
    Hatton recently posted…An Easy Kite to Fly.My Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 18, 2015 (6:32 am)

      Absolutely! A flexible schedule is a must!

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    Antionette Blake May 18, 2015 (1:14 pm)

    I sorta, kinda miss traveling with the boys when they were young – NOT! Next month we all are heading to Puerto Plata for an all-inclusive vacation – can’t wait! #MommyMondayHop
    Antionette Blake recently posted…Live leak free like me with Depend Silhouette Active FitMy Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 19, 2015 (6:38 am)

      Have a fabulous time! I know that traveling with the little ones can be so overwhelming. 🙂

  • comment-avatar
    Chelsea May 24, 2015 (6:50 pm)

    It has been a long time since my family has gone on a family vacation, now that my brother and I are older. However, my fiance and I are traveling for five months currently, and my mom and dad are meeting us in Thailand, so we are getting a new version of the family vacation. I am really looking forward to spending this time with my parents 🙂 Happy Memorial Day weekend!

    Chelsea
    Ginger Side of Life
    Chelsea recently posted…Remedy homesickness while travelingMy Profile

    • comment-avatar
      Sarah Ann May 28, 2015 (8:02 am)

      Have a wonderful time and happy summer!