Keeping the kids busy during school breaks

Today is the first day of our Thanksgiving break. My kids have the whole week off. Every year, I always have to balance keeping them busy and letting them relax. Too much unscheduled time seems to lead to bickering but with school, homework and activities taking up a lot of their time, it sometimes is nice to have nothing planned.

Lexie at the children's museum.

Lexie at the children’s museum.

So for this Thanksgiving break, I am balancing the two. Today we are off to the Children’s museum. We usually go about three times a year with friends but this is the first time in quite awhile that we will go just the three of us. Tomorrow, I plan to take them to the Magik Theatre’s production – Junie B. Jones: Jingle Bells, Batman Smell. Lexie is looking forward to it but Jase not so much. Luckily we are going with friends so he has another boy to share the humiliation of watching a show he considers for first graders. Thursday we will be at my parents’ house.

So that just leaves Wednesday and Friday. I think both days will be our stay-at-home days. There is no place I want to go to on Black Friday. Heck, I try to stay away from all that madness. I love to save money but there isn’t a deal out there that can convince me to get up early and stand in line for it.

After Thanksgiving break, there is only three weeks of school until the winter break. And then there will be more days to fill. I don’t have to worry about Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. We will be at home both those days. My in-laws will come over Christmas Eve, and my parents will be here Christmas Day.

One thing the kids are looking forward to is our Christmas party with their neighborhood friends. My friend Stephanie hosted one when Jase was in kindergarten. She planned to do it again the next year, but it never happened so I took up the challenge and hosted the party last year. It actually was my trial run for Jase’s birthday. I wanted to see if I could handle a group of excited children at my house.

P1030035It was an interesting experience and didn’t put me off having Jase’s birthday party at home last May. And I am willing to do it again though I have learned a lot about what I want to put my efforts into. Last year, I had found some cute things to do on Pinterest and while the parents remarked on them, my efforts were lost on the kids. So this year, I am going to worry less about making everything look good and concentrate on the kids just having fun.

As for other activities during the winter break, I already have a Groupon for Pump It Up. We will attend one of their open sessions to let the kids run and jump their energy out. We will also probably go visit my parents one of the days. And then there is taking them to the Magik Theatre – a children’s theatre showing Junie B. Jones: Jingle Bells, Batman Smells. Lexie is excited about this. Jase isn’t.

But even with these few planned activities, we will have plenty of days left open for them to play with their new toys. And before I know, break will be over, and they will be back to school.

One thought on “Keeping the kids busy during school breaks

  1. sjhigbee says:

    As you say – it really is a balancing act… I think you have hit the nail on the head, though. At school they get used to having a schedule with things happening at set times – so having some key occasions planned in advance is a really good idea.

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