School is out for the summer which means our normal routines are all out of wack! Changes in sleeping, eating, and physical activity habits are likely to be altered in the summer months when days aren’t structured with school and after school activities. Kids often turn to television and other electronics and even mindless eating due to boredom. Sound familiar? Read on for tips on how to beat the summer blues and keep your kiddos happy and healthy this summer!
- Keep a routine as much as possible. Kids thrive on routine so while your normal routine may not be in effect, work to develop a summertime routine that fits your family. Take into consideration sleep, meals, snacks, physical activity, and summer activities.
- Get enough sleep. Kids are likely to stay up late during the summer months. Set a reasonable bedtime which will not only help keep a nightly routine but also keep them from sleeping in too late.
- Meal plan! This is something that in general makes life less hectic, more organized, and more likely to stay on track with healthy eating. Take the extra time to plan out breakfasts, lunches, suppers, and snacks for your family and stick to it as much as possible. Incorporate healthy summer foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables including berries, melons, greens, tomatoes, and avocados. Utilize local farmer’s markets, produce co-ops, or your own backyard garden for fresh produce! Click here for more information on local farmer’s markets.
- Stay active– since recess and afterschool extracurricular activities are no longer keeping the kids running, jumping, and playing during the summer, we must make our own fun! Take the kids to a local playground, park, reservoir, lake, or swimming pool. At home, encourage kids to get outside and play ball, ride bikes, skateboard, run, etc.
- Enroll in a summer camp! There are numerous summer camps available throughout the Sandhills such as vacation bible schools, adventure, sports, and educational camps. Click here for a list of local summer camps. Also, check out local team and individual sports leagues to get your kids involved in!
Directions: Scoop out the watermelon flesh and add to blender or food processor along with lime juice, and honey. Blend until smooth. Pour the mixture through a sieve to remove any seeds or watermelon chunks. Carefully pour into popsicle molds and freeze until solid. You may need to run water over popsicle in order to easily remove from mold. Enjoy!