If you have ever moved, chances are your move occurred during the summer. Summer is the pinnacle of the busy moving season for obvious reasons. A school year begins in August and ends May. The months in between are the perfect time to move to a new place, especially if your kids will be changing schools. While summer may seem like the ideal time for a move, it doesn’t mean that a summer move is any less stressful than a move during the other nine months of the year. With no school, kids have way more free time, but that doesn’t mean adults do. In all likelihood you still have to work forty hours a week in addition to finding extra entertainment or childcare for your footloose and fancy free little ones. A summer move on top of a summer vacation, family members or friends visiting and coordinating summer camps can seem stressful. The packing, unpacking, organizing, hanging pictures on the wall, heck even just getting clean sheets on the bed for that first night can seem daunting. How do you survive a summer move while keeping the kiddos entertained? Listed below in increasing levels of desperation are our calf-wrangling ideas.
- Level 1 “Get a Job” – Not you, you probably already have a job. Give your kid a job! At Level 1 you are still hopeful and optimistic, why shouldn’t the kids be helpful? Depending on the age of your youngin’ assign an appropriate task. You may start with something simple, like asking your child to help pack their own room. If you experience success, keep going! As time wears on, your kid may be growing tired of “helping”. Giving your child a job is now less about your child actually being useful and more about simply occupying them! Less strenuous tasks are called for. Keeping track of the family pet is a great low-effort way to make Jr. feel important, while also making sure Fido, confused by his new surroundings, doesn’t wander off.
- Level 2 “Bubble Wrap” – At this stage you have started to face reality and are beginning to come to terms with the fact that if everyone makes it out alive, you will consider the move a success. While you are picking up some moving supplies, why not buy some extra bubble wrap. The effect that bubble wrap has on children of all ages is fascinating. Although there is nothing too amazing about bubble wrap, it is just a regular object that is just enough out of the ordinary to capture the attention of almost anyone. Bubble wrap is magnetizing, it’s as if the little bubbles sing a siren song to all children within a 400 meter radius to come and squish the bubbles. At the very least, bubble wrap should buy you 33 uninterrupted, kid-free minutes.
- Level 3 “Screen Time” – You know that the situation is getting desperate when you would give anything for just 15% more battery power on your iPhone. Entertaining or occupying the kids is now the least of your worries, as you desperately search for anything with a screen. The refrigerator isn’t cold yet (no cold snacks or drinks), you can’t remember where you packed the chargers, and Thing 2 wants whatever Thing 1 has. Desperate times call for desperate measures. If you are one of those lucky/fancy people that has a DVD player and screens, go for it! Now is the time to pull out all the stops. Whatever gas you have to use to start the car and keep it going so the kids have a/c, access to an iPhone charger, or their favorite Sponge Bob episode is well worth it.
Congratulations you made it through a summer move! Now where is that juice box and when can we have dinner?