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I used to have a few weeks off during the summer when I worked at a middle school and Jake was a baby. The first few summers being home with him were H-A-R-D. But 2017 turned a corner and it was glorious. The main reasons being that Jake was getting older and we could do more stuff, but I also realized that my summers had to be dedicated to the boys, and not my personal projects. Once I jumped on board, I realized I could PLAN my summer out and have something, no matter how small, planned for each day. So that was great for 2017, and then 2018 came and I started a new job that was year-round, so that was my last summer of adventure with the boys.

The years in between we’ve been lucky enough to have them spend time with grandparents, but this year they get to spend it with daddy! I realized that Jeff would also need to have some stuff planned to get him out of the house with THREE boys, or he might very well leave and never come back, haha

And, obviously, I jumped at the opportunity to research, plan, calendar, and color code things.

So, here’s our summer plan, generally:

  • Monday’s are for exploring new trails/hikes
  • Tuesday’s are for crafts
  • Wednesday’s are for exploring a new park/playground near by
  • Thursday’s are for science experiments
  • Friday’s are for the beach or…doing nothing after a busy week!

First I printed out a blank google calendar for the summer months, then marked it up with the things we already had planned (camping trip, chess and golf camp, etc.). Then I researched a bunch of family friends trails/hikes, new playgrounds, and reviewed my Pinterest kid activity board for crafts and science experiments. I assigned them to available dates, and then I added each of the planned activities on the Google calendar I share with Jeff. I know it seems redundant to write it out on a paper copy and then transfer to a digital one, but I love the visual of the paper copy when I’m starting things out, and the usefulness of sharing the digital one. I included the Pinterest link and the list of supplies for each activity on the Google calendar so Jeff could easily locate what was needed for that activity and how to do it. I also included links for locations for trail and park days.

The super fun part once activities were decided on: making a list of supplies to buy, heeeeyoooooo! I tried to support our local school supply store, but they really didn’t have as many of the items as I hoped, so we ended up resorting to Amazon and our local grocery store for most stuff. This may be showing my OCD too much, but here is the list I created in case it’s helpful. And yes, I DO sort it by date, or activity, or supply location…and yes, it makes me so so happy. And yes, I do have various versions printed…Anywho, purchased the supplies and placed them all in a big plastic bin in the garage so they’re all in one location, but also out of the way.

Here’s what I came up with:


  • Aliso Summit Trail
  • Buck Gully Trail
  • Thomas Riley Wilderness
  • Santiago Oaks Regional
  • Peters Canyon
  • Fullerton Panorama Trail




While at the teacher supply store I also purchased a couple different achievement certificates. We’ve decided when they earn five of them, they get the prize they convinced me to get them when I took them shopping for supplies…

What does your summer with kids typically look like? Any wonderful links to share with ideas?