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Making Summer Fun for You and Your Kids

The idea of the kids being home all summer is...a bit scary!  

But, as we live at the Jersey Shore, there are SO MANY things to do for the next 3+ months, that you're sure to pack your family calendar and have fun with your family.

In case you've noticed from various posts of mine, I try to pack my weekends with activities for the kids, my husband and I. (I sorta loathe being home with them ALL DAY, for more than 2 days in a row. We all, inevitably, get stir-crazy, and the two kids fight with each other more.) Sometimes my spouse and I take turns, and I'll take them somewhere on Saturday, and he will bring them some other place on Sunday.

Luckily, we signed them up for full-time camp, but my husband and I decided to only send them four days instead of five -- to save money, primarily, but also so Mondays could be dedicated 'grandparent' days. (We have one set of grandparents that live within an hour of us, and the other set are snowbirds from Florida, so they're very close, through September.)

I do try to keep a balance, however, between organic activities like heading for a bike ride at our town park, and paid activities like going to Jenkinson's Boardwalk, or a museum. I am a constant reader of various NJ-related "things to do" websites; there are quite a number of them, like the incredibly jam-packed and thorough www.jerseyfamilyfun.com site. Most county parks and recreation departments list events online and on social media too; I highly recommend quick glances at least weekly, in case you're on the hunt for 'things to do' with your little ones.

Yes, the beach is practically in our backyard here in the Garden State, but my family tends to stay away from actual beach-days (since I have had skin cancer and my kids are pretty fair-skinned). So, we have joined our town's pool club (about $250 for a family membership). Don't have one in your town? Some local hotel chains offer pool-use passes, and there are also a ton of water parks and spray grounds around to keep the kids cool on a hot summer day.

"Fun" doesn't always mean a million activities, of course. My kids certainly don't mind watching a movie (some theatre chains have mid-week discount days, and local libraries and even beach towns often have free or very low-cost family movies). We also like to craft, and usually will hit Michael's, AC Moore, and the home-building stores' kids' events at least twice every summer (either free, or under $5/per kid).

Don't forget a little escape, if you can swing it, during your Summer Break. We have been going to Lancaster, PA, every year, and usually use my husband's hotel points for a free stay to keep our expenses down.

When in doubt, turn on the sprinkler in your back yard, have a picnic in your front yard, and you're bound to create many memories with your children this summer!

How do YOU keep the fun going throughout the summer, and combat no-school boredom with your kids? I'd love to hear some ideas! Please comment below!

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