Summer Sanity Savers for Parents


Summertime and the living is easy.

Kind of.


Sort of.

Well, not so much if you have a house full of bored kids.

Summer vacation is an exciting time for children. However, once the novelty of being out of school wears off, parents are often left with warring offspring whining that they have nothing better to do than to beat the heck out each other.

In order to preserve your sanity this summer, consider the following simple kid-friendly activities aimed at keeping youngsters out of trouble:

Fun with Dirt: Take a trip to a local greenhouse and select seeds and plants to grow a backyard garden. Next, have kids craft homemade labels for the flowers or veggies you’re planting. To do so, gather cardstock, clear contact paper, Popsicle sticks, markers, scissors and glue. Next, cut the cardstock into circles about four inches in diameter. Have your kids write the names of each plant on individual cardstock circles, and then decorate the labels with drawings of the produce or flowers you are attempting to grow. When the decorating is done, cut a piece of contact paper slightly larger than the circle and adhere the paper onto the cardstock. Place a Popsicle stick on the circle with the end sticking out, and then glue the stick it place. Cut another piece of contact paper, and carefully press the two circles together, smoothing out any air bubbles. Finally, use the scissors to trim around the outside of the cardstock circle, leaving a thin border of clear contact paper before adding the labels to your garden.

Sugar-Free, Non-Melting Ice Cream Cone: To make this cute summer craft you will need some brown or tan construction paper, colored pom-poms, small colored beads, glue, and scissors. Start by rolling the construction paper into a cone shape, and then gluing the ends together. Once the glue has dried completely, cut the top of the cone, so you have a point at the bottom and a flat edge at the top. Spread a good amount of glue onto the flat edge and carefully attach the pom-poms. Once the pom-poms have dried in place add a small amount of glue to the colored beads which will act as sprinkles for your ice cream cone. It’s up to your kids to decide how many of the “sprinkles” they want to add to their cones.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.