Family, Kids

Fun Summer Activities for Kids that won’t zap your energy

Fun Summer Activities for kids!

That don’t use up a lot of the parent’s energy!

        I have mixed feeling about summer break! I love that I have my daughter home all day and can spend time with her.

       She is going into third grade and I don’t know where the time went! I still remember when she was crying every morning as I was dropping her off at her Japanese preschool.

       Nowadays, I still count my blessings because she gave me a kiss and an “I love you mom” every day during the school year before goinginto the school building.

       However, she is extremely active and always wants to do something. On the other hand, I am unable to be active. I would love to be active but that’s not in the cards for me. So I am always on the        lookout for activities to do that don’t require me to be standing or walking. I have many limitations but I won’t go into that here since I wrote more about them in my first post .

I came up with a few fun ideas to keep her occupied and having fun

  •    Library

I love the library. There is something so soothing about walking the aisles. Yet it is also exciting because you can find all kinds of adventure within the pages of the books there. I am extremely happy that my daughter has inherited her love of books from me and her dad. I am also proud that she is an advanced reader and she likes to challenge herself by picking up higher grade level books. That means, there is no shortage of books for her 🙂

Our local library, besides offering a vast array of books as libraries are wont to do, also has an awesome summer program for the kids. They have weekly events around different themes. For example, our library this month  has a Rainforest habitat event and a reptile event (one I will not be taking my daughter to as snakes and I do NOT mix, like ever!) just to name a few.

Bottom line, the library is an almost endless source of entertainment. And it’s free fun!

The library is great for discovering things and what better way to do that than the old fashioned Scavenger Hunt.

I created a printable and you can download the PDF file here:

Library Scavenger Hunt . Click on picture to Download PDF file.

I know my daughter will have tons of fun doing this Scavenger hunt.

And I will have fun watching her from the comfort of a comfy library chair. 🙂

And even sip my decaf coffee because our library is so awesome they have a coffee kiosk at the entrance to the children’s area!

  • Backyard fun

The backyard may seem like such a mundane place but it can be an abundant source of fun! I have been asking my daughter to water our plants ( we have a small vegetable patch, which will hopefully yield veggies). The watering chore is one she will do with great enthusiasm. She comes back after 30 minutes or so, soaking wet! And there I am , hoping the plants got at least a bit of water. 🙂 She loves playing with the hose. She calls it “Watering herself and the plants!” Water play in the backyard is one of her favorite things to do!

She also loves looking for animals. We have bunnies, squirrels and a chipmunk that are regular visitors. She gave me the idea of a backyard scavenger hunt. By this point, you are probably thinking I have a passion for scavenger hunts? I like them because the kids can do them independently and completing them gives them a sense of accomplishment.

As for me?  I can just sit on the porch (or in that library chair) and watch.

I came up with a backyard scavenger hunt printable with the help of my daughter.

Backyard scavenger hunt. Click on photo to download PDF.

She already asked if she could do it and I know she will have fun looking for all the creatures.

It’s gloomy and rain is looming on the horizon today so we will have to postpone it for now.

I wonder if she will pick up any worms she finds?

I accidentally touched one when I was planting my hanging basket flowers and shrieked in response. 🙂

  •   Playground

My daughter loves going to the playground. We have this awesome playground, called Imagination Station, about 5 minute drive from our house. It is a wooden playground that has lots of climbing spaces, zip line, monkey bars, tire swing, and even a miniature wooden castle. I can sit on a bench in the shade and sip my water while she runs around, expending all the energy I wish I had. And if I arrange a playdate beforehand, she is even happier to have a friend to play with. Not that she doesn’t end up making new friends ( she always does) but it’s so much more fun playing with someone she already knows.

This is a different playground but she was very happy to have her best friend, Ella there with her.

The playground hits all the sweet spots- she has fun, uses up a lot of energy and I try not to use any.

  •         Pool

I have a love/hate relationship with the pool. I love just sitting on the poolside under an umbrella and watching everyone else get baked under the sun. But I hate being under direct sunlight. It zaps my energy and makes me feel as energized as a wet dish towel. But, my daughter loves swimming and the pool is the number one thing she wants to do in the summer. So I have to find a compromise. I am willing to go on cloudy days. On those days, I will even sit on the edge of the pool while my daughter splashes me. I will even go as far as going into the water and lounge next to the wall, letting the water lift up my legs. I find that so relaxing.

  •          Games

Games are my absolute favorite activity! I get very competitive when playing games. Haha. My daughter has to remind me :”Mom, calm down, it’s just a game!” 🙂 We have a coffee table that opens up and has a fairly large storage compartment.

Our Korean coffee table. 🙂
This table has a lot of storage

This houses all our games. We have played them so many times so I always look for something new. But preferably without having to buy a new game. So, I came up with a Beach Bingo game. This game will give you the beachy feel without the sand between your toes. 🙂 But of course, you can also play it on the beach to get that really authentic experience! I would suggest laminating the pages so they can be reused and won’t get torn or otherwise  mangled.

Here is a link to the PDF (Just click on the picture- this has different 5 bingo cards)

Summer Bingo – we used Swedish fish and hard candy for the bingo pieces…Fun and yummy 🙂


What are some of your ideas for low parent energy activities that the kids love? How do you keep them occupied during the summer?



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