How to stay sane during the summer holidays

Posted in: Family Last updated: 28 Aug 2015
How to stay sane in the Summer holidays

When it comes to the summer holidays, more often than not, one parent ends up taking time off of work to care for the family until school starts back up again. Not only is this physically draining - running after a five-year-old all day is significantly harder than a desk-based job - it can be mentally tiring too.

Taking a bit of respite from the day-to-day, much like Lynne McKeag - one of our grant receivers - is really important no matter your circumstances. Here, we've got some hints and tips on how to do just that. Enjoy, and relax!

Dedicate some time to yourself

As the usual working routine can often come to a standstill during the school holidays, it's not uncommon for parents to find themselves with the kids 24/7. While it’s lovely to spend so much time with the family, it can leave you needing a little time for yourself too!

Whether it's a couple of hours on an evening, or an entire day if you can swing the childcare, it's essential to take some time for yourself. Whether that's going out for a coffee, heading to the cinema or even staying at home and doing not a lot from the sofa, a couple hours to be yourself - not a parent - can work wonders for your state of mind.

Keep up a routine

Though things don't need to be as strict as during term time, keeping some semblance of a routine not only makes life easier when September rolls around, but it can help to manage your children's behavioural expectations.

It's important to keep meal times consistent (for preventing hungry grumpiness!) as well as bedtimes. Where that's not possible due to days out, keeping your routine the same if they're awake when you get home help keeps a degree of consistency present.

"By implementing recurring meal and sleep times, you can begin to introduce a new structure into your day."

Not only are these factors good for your children's routine, they're also important for you! It's so easy to let the household chores fall by the wayside when you've got the children to entertain, but by implementing recurring meal and sleep times, you can begin to introduce a new structure into your day. This could include self-occupied play for the little ones, giving you time to get everything sorted, and also ensuring the kids don't become too reliant on you for their entertainment over the six week break!

Arrange play dates with other parents

Play dates are a brilliant summer holiday resource for a good handful of reasons. Not only are the children likely to be excited to play with their friends, they'll also blow off steam together, and you get a chance to interact with other parents that are more than likely feeling the same way that you are!

If the sun's shining, why not take a picnic down to the park and let the kids run around? You might find that bedtime's a breeze after a bit of fresh air too!

Don't forget to have fun!

The summer holidays are often a highlight of your child's year. They're only this young once, so making their six weeks out of school really fun is the best way of making it memorable - for both of you!

Together as a family, you could make a list at the beginning of the holidays that details everything you'd all like to do over the break. This doesn't need to be big (and expensive) activities - going to the park, playing with friends, or even baking a cake could easily be included. Incorporate a good range of indoor and outdoor activities, and you'll never be stuck for things to do whatever the weather- enjoy!

“10 Tips to Make This the Best Summer Ever with Your Kids.” Retrieved from: http://www.ahaparenting.com/parenting-tools/traditions/Summer-Activities-Kids-Home
“Keeping The Peace for a Stress Free Summer Holiday.” Retrieved from: http://www.netmums.com/parenting-support/parenting-advice/positive-parenting/keeping-the-peace-tips-for-stress-free-school-holi

Note: Whilst we take care to ensure Hub content is accurate at the time of publication, individual circumstances can differ so please don’t rely on it when making financial decisions. OneFamily do not provide advice so it may be worth speaking to an independent financial adviser about your own circumstances.