Our weekend was crazy busy, and after such a wickedly packed weekend, all we have wanted to do was take it easy and enjoy life. Our summer is very jam packed with all of our fife and drum activities, so any down time we can get we’ll take. We were sitting around at dinner tonight talking about things we could plan for next week and so we started talking about things we did last summer. We always have so much fun together, and I knew my kids would have some great ideas. So after asking my 5 teens, ages 13-17, the question
“What would you tell a family to do for a simple summer night?”
The only limits I put on it were to keep it low cost, keep it to things that don’t require a lot of planning or could be done as an impromptu thing and something a family can do together no matter how old the kids are.
I compiled their answers and wrote this post – these are all things we have done and will be doing again. And the best part is, they are all simple, support family time and are fun!
1. Jessica (13) – Family Walk. Nature walks. Hiking. You can go to parks and walk their trails, or just walk around your neighborhood or town or whatever. Spend time walking, talking and laughing together. Find cool objects along the way, pay attention to bushes, flowers, trees and other things. Talk about them as a family.
2. Brielle (14) – Picnic at the Park. We do this all the time. Make up sandwiches, salads, fruit and other goodies or if you want to purchase it pre-made, go for it. Head to the park, find a shady spot, throw down a blanket and enjoy a picnic at the park. Afterward they can go play, or read or just sit and watch. We do this so often, it’s almost a weekly ritual now.
3. Melissa (15) – Check out your areas calendar of events. You can usually find this by doing a search online for “your town” and “calendar of events” or by checking out your town’s paper or news magazine. In our small area we have concerts in the park, festivals, parades, star gazing and many other events that are all free. If we wanted to, we could probably find something to do at least 4 or 5 days a week, and they are either free or super low cost, so don’t forget to look there.
4. Vanessa (17) – Have a firepit, roast hot dogs and s’mores. We have a firepit we purchased for pretty cheap, but they can be made as well using bricks or cement blocks which are pretty cheap at home improvement stores or sometimes even at junk yards and garage sales.
5. Ryan (17) – Fishing in the Park. Fishing poles can be cheap and you can even make your own if you wanted to with a stick and some fishing line from Wal-Mart and they even sell cheap hooks. Worms can be dug up in your yard if you want, or you can purchase them for pretty cheap. You can go to a pet store and buy crickets – they work too. Also some people use hot dogs and cheese and other food items. It’s a fun night, the entire family can do it and you can all sit together and talk.
6. Bonus – They all said this one: Drive around. Roll down the windows if it’s not too hot, and just drive. We love to take drives in the evening and explore areas we’ve never been. We drive by streets all the time and wonder where they go, so every once in awhile we just drive around for an hour or so looking at cool stores, landmarks and other interesting things about our area.