It’s finally summer break here in Los Angeles!  My kids’ last day was yesterday and I’m so relieved.  This school year darn near killed me. Between the cross country move and starting new schools and learning to navigate the Common Core- I’m more ready for summer than I’ve ever been.  I’m also ready to start Camp Mom next week.  As y’all know, I tend to go big and structured with our summer plans.  Remember the Hunger Games themed field day?  Good times…good times.

This summer will be slightly different, I’m not making a rigorous lesson plan for each child as in summers past because #FromBostonToLA sucked up all my lesson planning mojo, but when I thought about the days stretched long and terrible before me, I decided that if there’s one thing I hate more than over-planning my summer- it’s hearing the dreaded, “I’m bored” 48.5 hours into summer vacation. It’s inevitable. Even though my children know that bored kids get chores- the gross ones, like wiping down the veggie drawer and scrubbing the kids’ bathroom- at some point when they’ve watched, “SpongeBob:Sponge Out of Water” for the eleventy-billionth time,  they’ll whine “I’m bored”. To which,  I’ll roll my eyes and try to ignore them, then they’ll bring my iPad over and ask for a new app. So instead, I’ll give them a new sponge to wipe the baseboards. Without a doubt,  they’ll cop a ‘tude and then it’ll be Summer Chore Smack down 2015!  Smack downs totally kill my summer buzz, so in an attempt of proactive peacemaking, I’ve created our weekly schedule. 

Each day has a general idea that will guide our activities.  VBS hopping takes prescient (really, what woman will turn down five days of super cheap childcare- “not ,I”  said the mama pouring a virgin margarita, “not I!”), outings will come after morning chores, and we’ll always throw our plans to the wind if we get invited to hang with new friends, people before plans.  Always.

If you’re looking for a way to structure your summer, here’s our summer weekly schedule. That is at least for June.  In July each kids is hosting their own book club which I’ll share more about later on.

  • Monday: Lazy/Detox From the Weekend Day

We’re a pastor’s family, so holidays and weekends are shot for family time.  I’m so glad our church gives the pastors Mondays off for their Sabbath.  So on Mondays while the hubs is off taking his Sabbath we’ll be home reading and playing. Excessive screen time is encouraged. The one rule is whatever you do, it must be relaxing.  Maybe I’ll plan a craft or recipe since my daughter and I relax with DIY, but no promises and no expectations.  We’re detoxing from busyness.

  • Tuesday:  Find a New Nook Day

TJ (9) reading on our patio during dinner time! This child needs a nook!

We’re going to explore new places to read, under a tree the park, by the pool, at the beach, in the woods, cool coffee shops, bookstores, outdoor malls with fountains, on the patio, if has a place for the four (or six) of us to spread out and read- we’re going.  The kids will have lunchboxes packed of their favorite snacks and a book tote (which we’ll make).  The only rule is once you find a space to read you have to stay there for thirty minutes before looking for a new space to read.

  • Wednesday (or Thursday) : Volunteering day/ random acts of kindness.

Volunteering at the “Worthy of Love” birthday party. Worthy of Love throws elaborate, super fun birthday parties for kids at the Union Mission in DTLA. It was so much fun and we can’t wait to volunteering again this summer.

The kids and I are making a list of places where we’d like to volunteer; TJ wants to help at a animal shelter, Trinity wants to do something with the homeless in Downtown LA, Tyson’s down for anything that involves being outside, so I’m working on contacting non-profits and setting up volunteer days.  If we don’t have a specific appointment to volunteer with one of these organizations  then we’ll spend a couple of hours doing random acts of kindness (putting away all the carts at all the grocery stores within a five mile radius, paying it forward ice cream cones at all the ice cream restaurants within in a three mile radius, cleaning the park, etc.).


Kids playing at a fountain in Grand Hope Park, in downtown LA.

I have an app for Geocaching that I love to use.  So we’re doing that. Each kid will search their room for a small treasure to leave and off we’ll go!  Map reading and outdoor play.  Super fun and super cheap. Can’t get better than that!

  • Friday: Homebody Day


Whatever we do, we will be close to home.  Pool, basketball, yoga in the park, and movie marathons.  Basically I need this day to rest from the week.

So, here it is. My summer weekly schedule.  I don’t think I’ve ever entered Summer with only one Pinterest board of plans and a general idea of daily fun before.  It’s both liberating and exciting.  I hope my plans inspire you to create a smidgen of structure in your summer plans.  Let me know if you decide to do one of my days’ “themes” and share with me your favorite summer plans.  Are you VBS hopping?  Yoga-ing in the park?  Pouring virgin margaritas?  I wanna know it all.

Summer Planning and Shalom,
PS.  So the hubs and I are thiiiiisss close to choosing and installing my new theme and rolling out the new and improved, “Shalom in the City”.  If you have a minute, pop over a take the survey to make sure it’s everything you’d hope it would be. There’s gifts and the opportunity to be opinionated- you really wanna pass that up?