In the seasons of the year, we have just passed our summer solstice, that tipping point where our days are growing shorter and signifying an end to leisurely play for our kids. As back-to-school ads creep up and school supply lists make their way to our inboxes, it’s time to take stock of what we’ve done and what we would like to accomplish before fall returns. This year I made a vision board for my summer plans, much to the chagrin of my children. They thought it was funny how I outlined it with a pretty border and used different color markers to notate my varied goals and aspirations. They laughed at my plans for their daily chores and reading lists. I didn’t care, I knew my time with them this summer, though seemingly expansive at the onset of June, was going to fly by.
I was determined to wake up with a daily image of what I wanted for my days. Did it work? Well, we did make it to the library a few times though the beach has been elusive due to red tide. We had a ton of fun at Sun N Fun, and I think they spent a minute or two reading so I’m not completely disappointed. My “Body” category is a work in progress, my house is spotless, but my finances are still a complete mess. I guess that all in all, it’s gone pretty good so far.
According to Mind Tools, there are five rules you should follow to insure goal setting and goal keeping are successful. They seem simple so I’m not sure why we’re not all goal wizards. The most important aspects seem to be setting attainable and measurable goals that motivate you. Seems reasonable, right? As you see time racing on and the long days of summer waning, what plans do you have for your family?
If you are working full time through the summer while your kids are at camp or home, there is an inherent guilt to that process. While you clearly have a need for financial stability to afford all things like—summer camp and a house, you long to be enjoying your children’s free time with them. We all know how much of their time is consumed once school begins. We suggest using these long evenings to enjoy a sunset picnic with your loved ones before summer is up. Pack up an easy supper, some beach toys and enjoy swimming and sky gawking while the sun hams it up for you with a colorful sunset. If you plan ahead you can catch a drum circle, something everyone should see.
Games are on tap before school starts and I’m not talking about anything that has to do with electronics. Instead, dust off your Monopoly and Sorry games and make it a game night complete with snacks and root beer floats. There’s something magical that happens when you get everyone gathered around the table with a healthy dose of competition flowing, music in the background and face-to-face contact. Likewise, a movie night where everyone crashes on the couch with overflowing bowls of popcorn and plenty of pillow cuddles is often just the reset a busy family needs.
If your end-of-summer goals include beginning a healthy regimen with your brood, why not set aside 30 minutes every other night for a bike ride, a walk around the block or some weight training. If you start now you will have a better chance to succeed once the rigorous school schedules begin. Also, summer is a perfect time to let everyone shop for something they’d like to prepare for a family dinner. One person takes on the main course, one makes the salad, the lucky one gets to create dessert and just like that you’re not only eating dinner together you’re spending quality time shopping and preparing.
We hope your summer goals are being met, and if not, there’s always time to get back on the wagon. With the exponential speed in which life moves it is important that we set aside time to just enjoy our daily lives and time spent with family. Happy post Summer solstice Sarasota-Bradenton! What’s on your vision board for the second half of this amazing summer?
Photos courtesy of depositphotos.