Living in a perfect climate like San Diego, it should come to no surprise that we have non-stop visitors all summer long. My friends joke around with me and call our home “Chateau Schaffer.” With the unforgettable memories being made with our loved ones from afar, we wouldn’t have it any other way. We relish in the fact that our family and friends want to spend their time with us. However, with the excitement of guests, its hard keeping my kids on any sort of task during their summer adventures.
Currently, our home is boasting an additional six family members from the East Coast. Hosting our family has been a summer highlight year after year. With the freedom and spontaneity that comes with a Schaffer summer, one thing that has to stay constant for our little ones is their chores and their summer reading and writing. Even in the midst of summer guests, Erin Condren’s new items has made my “big family” staying on task seem seamless.
Acts Of Kindness
Living in such a fragile world it is imperative our kids practice one or more acts of kindness each day. I don’t want my kids to just be receivers of kind acts, rather I am teaching them to be givers of kindness. By reminding them to do at least one kind thing each day, I hope to increase their happiness, expand their positive outlook on life and remind them that bullying is not acceptable. Erin Condren’s compliment cards do just that. I love the idea of my kids picking one or more person to give one to. Whether a stranger passing by, or a friend feeling blue, these compliment cards are such a simple way to make someone’s day. Surprising someone with an unexpected compliment is a great way to spread joy and hopefully inspire others to do the same.
As much as I love our lazy mornings and a loosely bound summer, one thing remains true year after year: My kids make better use of their time when they have some sort of structure in place. So many of my friends are exhausted and ready for school to start because they throw all of their routines out the window once summer hits. Having this many kids in our house, eight to be exact, we have no choice but to stick to routines. Just the right amount of structure keeps our house and lives flowing at a great pace.
My children seem to be most responsive to doing their daily reading and writing in the morning hours. As soon as they wake up over breakfast, I ask them to read for 30 minutes and write about what they read. They also get to choose from many work books I keep on hand for them. Having the kids do some school work will ultimately keep their brains sharp and will experience less regression in learning when they return to school.
Erin Condren created a checklist that really helps my kids complete their individualized tasks. After the chores and studies are complete, it’s all about some summer fun! For a list on age appropriate summer goals you can click here.
As much as it is important for my children to read, it is equally important for them to write. One way I like to inspire my children to write is to let them tell the stories of their summer adventures. We experience so much living in San Diego and with non-stop visitors that they have plenty to write about. Erin Condren’s selection of journals are perfect for our kids on the go. My children are also enjoying the designer sticker book that keeps their writing decorative.
Here are some summer writing prompts I found to be useful with my children:
- What do you like about summer?
- Describe your guests
- Write about your daily adventure
- Whats your favorite thing to do in the summer?
- If you could go anywhere, where would you go and why?
- What is your favorite season and why?
- Write about your summer acts of kindness
- How could you make your sibling happy?
- If you didn’t have to go to school, what would you do?
- If our dogs could talk, what would they say?
Helpful Summer Items
Our summer has been rich in exploration and plentiful in water sports. We have been in the thick of making meaningful memories and joyful discoveries with our houseful of visitors. Having ID Tags for all of our back packs, luggage and lunch totes has made any items left behind identifiable. Erin Condren has an array of prints to choose from and I suggest buying extra. You would be surprised how many items you could throw these on.
With EC’s new lunch tote’s you can say bye-bye to brown paper bags. These, perfect in size and easily washable lunch totes are ideal for our family of six. I can easily pack the kid’s lunches and they love having their own bag with their name on it. Its been our most popular grab and go item this summer. You can be sure we will be using these for all of our family outings.
Must Have Labels
One staple item I could never have too much of are my gift labels. With four kids, and roughly 25 kids in each class, you could be sure they will be invited to 100 birthday parties this school year. Lets not forget the sports teams too. Having labels to put on gifts is such a savior. I also love bringing a bottle of wine to our friend’s house and having a custom gift label from Bobby and I is the best way to add that detailed finishing touch.
As my family has grown, I have found this on-the-go check list to be so helpful. When we are trying to leave for the weekend with so many kids pulling us in multiple directions, you can be sure we forget things. Not any more! With this handy itemized list, I am able to cross check with Bobby to see if we forgot anything of importance.
When structure abounds in the hazy, lazy crazy days of summer you can be sure you are giving your kid a head start when the next school year rolls around. No matter how you’re conjuring memories this summer, from mid-week sleepovers to s’mores and camp outs, providing just the right amount of structure in a consistent environment can be beneficial to both the kids and us parents. Erin Condren has done it again for our family. She keeps creating items that both inspire and gives us that right amount of organization to thrive in the summer months.
What I love about my job: A GIVEAWAY
Erin Condren would love to give THREE lucky winner lunch totes for all of your minis. All you have to do is follow both @erincondren and @citygirlgonemom on INSTAGRAM. Post one summer photo and tag it #EClunchtote
Winner announced in one week!
This Post is Sponsored! However, all thoughts and opinions are my own! Thank You For Sponsoring CityGirlGoneMom!