In most homes, school is over, and summertime has begun. On the one hand, most moms feel grateful that warm weather is here, family fun has begun, and the stress of the school year is on hold for the next three months. The kids are ecstatic because they get to run through the yard shooting water guns at their friends, sleep in and stay up later, and take a break from dreaded homework. But it doesn’t take too long before another set of emotions creep in.

“I’m bored!” “Why do I have to mow the lawn? I’m on break!” “Will you two stop fighting?” “Shut off the video games; you have been playing for two hours!” Mixed in with all that perceived fun you were going to have is a big dose of reality. It’s not so easy having everyone under the same roof day and night, not to mention the half dozen neighborhood children that have joined your family. The house is falling apart as wet feet drag in the outside dirt. You’re getting worn down by the almost constant requests for drinks, snacks, attention and chauffeuring. And your kids have suddenly realized that you had not planned on entertaining them all summer long.

Sound familiar? Having an amazing summer with your children, that also includes you enjoying your own “adult” summer, requires you to be more intentional. It might not seem possible to get any of your own down time, or put together the structure that is necessary to start working and playing together as a team. But here are 10 quick tips you can put to use immediately:

1. Find the perfect balance between structured activities and free time for the family.
2. Create a snack basket filled with healthy treats, and a small pitcher of kool-aid or juice in the refrigerator so they can help themselves.
3. Have the whole family join the local library summer reading club, and declare a family reading time where everyone is forced to relax and have some quiet time.
4. Make a list of the family fun “must haves” and schedule these events into the calendar.
5. Help your children learn to solve their own problems so you can substitute refereeing with something you enjoy doing.
6. Keep a secret box filled with surprise arts and crafts activities for rainy days.
7. Create a daily schedule and routine for your kids so you can maintain some structure.
8. Make this summer a time of learning for the whole family – what would make the new school year smoother for everyone? Work on implementing these new skills now.
9. Teach your older kids how to make some new, summertime lunches and dinners for the family.
10. Foster entrepreneurship in your children by helping them set up a little summer business.

For more great ideas to help you minimize family stress and put the joy back into parenting, consider a Quick Family Makeover. The ideas you learn here will help you make immediate and significant changes in your family.

Author's Bio: 

Lori Radun is a certified life and parent coach, and the author of The Quick Family Makeover. To learn more visit