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Summer Fun: 10 Tips for Making Great Family Memories

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Summer Fun—Summer can be a great time, full of playing with your kids and reunions and sprinklers. Summer can also be a stressful time, keeping ones' kids happy, ones' house clean, and one's blog well-read. But if you can manage it well, summer has the potential for being a great time full of rich memories and family bonding.

At a Girls' Night Out party in May with Reddi-Wip, Mom It Forward Tweeters excitedly discussed ways they've found to make great summer memories. Not surprisingly, many of them revolved around food. Here are the top 10 Tweet tips, in order:

  1. Get the mosquitoes under control. Surprisingly, the most popular tips shared were ways to either prevent or treat mosquito bites. There is nothing than can spoil summer fun better than a preponderance of mosquitoes. Many tweeters praised preventative measures such as Citronella candles and mozzie coils (a repelling coil made by a Japanese inventor, according to @fujimama), cited studies like this one on mosquito repellants chemical and non-chemical, and spouted the virtues of Calydryl, an anti-itch cream.
  2. Plan engaging summer activities for and with your kids. In addition to such common activities as swimming and going to the zoo, tweeters also had these great suggestions: a kids book club/exchange (@themommyfiles), summer workbook time ("Working together on summertime workbooks," says @danielleleitch, "gives me a chance to work 1-on-1 with my daughter without the pressure of 'homework/tests.'"), and "summer school" (see this great list of tips from @rootsandwingsco).
  3. Bake with your kids. Make sugar cookies with M&Ms with your kids, and have them sort them by color, suggests @jylmomIF. @KodakCameras says: "I LOVE baking with my two boys. We take pics of the goodies they helped make, and post to our family blog." Perhaps best of all is this tip from@crazyzeus1: "Expect a mess and roll with it!" @msmary1962 provides this great recipe for simple homemade ice cream kids can make:  "Just milk (regular, soy, almond) sugar, vanilla to taste. Put in a small bag then in a big bag with ice/salt. Make sure to not put too much in small bags then shake and shake till it is done. When ready rinse bag."
  4. Eat good food. Of course! Here are just a few of the great recipes shared: Chocolate Lava Mug Cakes from @conagrafoods, Grilled Tropical Fruit Shortcake from @timeoutmom,  and Crockpot Kalua Pig from @fujimama.
  5. Entertain often, but keep it simple. Says @lil_black_apron: "We entertain outdoors at least 1x per week. Best advice is to keep it simple and roll with whatever happens. @keltom2 suggests: "Offer foods that don't spoil easy."
  6. Always drink lots of fluids. @fujimama provides this great recipe for a Green Grape Spritzer.
  7. Live through your child's eyes. While perhaps easier said than done, @vectoringmomma says: "I love seeing my little guy's light up when we play at the beach! Living thru their eyes is awesome!!"
  8. Try doing a "photo walk" of your neighborhood, as suggested by @jylmomIF.
  9. Try new games, like this one from @sunnee63: "Blindfolded, squirt Reddi-Wip in the mouth of non-blindfolded partner."
  10. Take it one day at a time.@ladyozma says: "The best way to make the most is to take each day as a new adventure. Make good memories, hug the kids a lot, smile."

Bottom line: live it up with your family, incorporating both structure and "going-with-the-flow," and have fun!

How do you make great summer memories? What are simple ways to have fun during the summer?

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