Ok, so let’s just be 100% transparent for a minute here. The house was a mess, chores weren’t getting done, and I forgot what a meal plan even was this year. Don’t get me wrong. I had the best of intentions. Then a lot of life happened and I just hit survival mode with all I had. Suddenly, I started doing the bare minimum and things just worked the best they could around here. That said, it’s time for a reset. It’s time for me to reclaim the crazy and get things running smoothly again. That’s where my Summer reset comes into play. I’m going to be using summer to reset the home!
Using Summer to Reset The Home
This will look different for everyone. I know in our house there are a few main areas that really needed to be addressed. Let me share a few of the areas I needed to work on as well as some tips to help you put together your Summer reset plan.
Reset the Cleaning
This year I let messes go that I never would have. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not climbing piles of trash hoarders style but there are areas where we could have done better. I’ve set up a few ways that we are going to work on this.
- Daily Deep Cleans – I have set aside specific days each week where I will be deep cleaning certain areas to get them back to standard. Yes, that means cleaning out cabinets, washing down baseboards, and going into the dreaded slush drawer. The goal for the deep clean is to get things to a more maintainable standard.
- Setting Daily Expectations – In order to keep things clean after deep cleaning I have changed the daily expectations around here. They’re really quite simple. If you use it, put it away. Dirty it, clean it. If you use a dish, rinse it and put it in the dishwasher. This simple concept should get us moving forward with a simpler cleaning routine.
- Given back Responsibility – For a while there, my husband and I took over a lot of the daily cleaning around here. We would “just do it” so that it was done and done right. That has definitely been changed going forward. The kids know their responsibilities and will be accountable to completing them. If they don’t, they won’t be seeing much technology this Summer.
Cut the Clutter
Clutter makes the house looks much messier than it should. This year we are focusing on cutting back on some of the clutter around here to regain some of our peace. In order to do this we have started asking a few important questions about the things that could be considered clutter in the home. These are all questions your kids can answer walking through their toy room just as much as you can answer them walking through your kitchen.
- Do I still use it? – It can be easy to keep something because you might use it one day. When I was cleaning out the kitchen I found a Soda Stream. I haven’t had soda in 6 months. I definitely don’t need a Soda Stream. I found it a new home. If you have things you no longer use could you donate it or sell it?
- Do I really need it? – There are some things I keep “just in case.” These are some of the most random items and sometimes I save them thinking I may want them one day. I really need to ask myself if I actually intend on using them though. If it is something I don’t need, it can go to make the house a little less cluttered.
- Does it have sentimental value? – If you ask my daughter this, everything will be a yes. She has memories tied to so much. However, we have been looking at the sentimental value behind things as of late and trying to figure out what should be kept and what can bless someone else.
Focus on Daily Reading Time
I am a HUGE advocate of raising children who are strong readers. Because of this, I am returning to a focus on daily reading time. This is reading time above and beyond school time that is meant to take children on an adventure and stir a love of reading for fun in them. Here’s a few of the ways we will be doing that this Summer.
- Participate in Summer Reading Programs – There are tons of great Summer reading programs out there with exciting incentives. These are a great way to make reading fun for kids. We are going to be taking part in a few of them.
- Commit to Library day – Our local library is pretty much amazing! They offer tons of fabulous Summer programs and always have a huge selection of books for kids. In order to get the kids reading this Summer I will make our weekly library day a priority so that they always have a pile of books to pick from.
- Pick great audio books – Another way to get kids to love to have daily reading time is to pick out great audio books. We are currently working our way through the Divergent series in the car and may be adding Eragon to the house.
- Read aloud with kids – There is something so great about reading aloud with your kids. It doesn’t have to stop as they get older. Whether you read to them or they read to you, reading aloud together can be a great way to enjoy reading because you are all on the same adventure together.
Fill in Learning Gaps
Learning gaps happen. Summer is our time to look at where there might be a gap in learning and work to correct it. This year we are working on skip counting, certain grammar rules, and the months of the year. These are areas where the kids either knew these things and forgot or haven’t learned them as well as I would like to move them forward. Here are a few ways to use your Summer to fill in learning gaps.
- Decide which learning gaps you want to focus on. – You don’t have to conquer your child’s education in a day. Look at what learning gaps you see in your child and decide which ones are the priority. What will they need for the next step in their education? Sometimes it is better to look at things one step at a time and decide what they need for the next step.
- Check out Pinterest – Pinterest is a great place to find free unit studies and lesson ideas for specific things. You might be able to find an idea on Pinterest to help you work through the learning gap in a fun way.
- Ask for help. – It is completely ok to take advantage of Summer tutoring or reach out to a friend for help if needed. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.
Adjust Behavior Expectations
This Summer will also be a time for the family to adjust expectations. I have two of the most amazing kids on the planet. That said, some behaviors just don’t work. As the kids are getting older we are having to adjust consequences and expectations. I won’t go into great detail here. The only thing I will say is that I will be more clear about expectations and the consequences associated with disobedience.
Get Back to Meal Planning
One of the other things I will be working on is meal planning. I was seriously just winging it. Guess what, that’s expensive and stressful. Here are a few of the ways I will be working our meal planning in the Summer.
- Have a set snack allowance for each kid. – Homeschooled or not, these kids will eat me out of house and home in the Summer. I have found that if I tell them they get a certain number of snacks each day or have free range of the vegetables after eating a certain amount of other snacks, things last longer.
- Cook for multiple days. – Things like my crock pot mojo pork can prep for more than one meal. I will cook enough for a few days and freeze the extra. I am starting to cook ahead like this so that it will save time on busier days.
- Take advantage of the crock pot. – My crock pot is my best friend! I love that thing! Who said busy days out had to end in fast food? If I have the crock pot cooking all day than we will still enjoy a hot dinner when we get home.
What are you doing with your Summer? What will you be working to reset?
Looking for more?