Remember when a vacation or a day out of the house was fun and spontaneous?
It seems like there was a time when we weren’t always so busy. When we didn’t have 5 sports practices or games a week and when we wanted to just go out for a drive (with a crazy commute for dad, taking a long drive is the last thing we want to do!). There’s a constant battle in our house to pull away from the screens; get outside for summer fun, see something or someone new, and just play. Many days the only thing we want to say yes to is our couch and not many memories are made from that view.
There’s so many places to go, as our readers know. BUT, sometimes the planning makes it less fun. Keeping the kids on schedule to be somewhere right at opening? Too much stress. Doing research on fun outdoor activities leads to unrealistic Pinterest activities? Too-high expectations. It’s easier said than done, but let this be the summer when if you’re lucky enough to have days off or the summer off, you’ll enjoy the lazy and less crazy days of summer. With our easy tips below you’ll be ready to say YES to those last minute ideas.
5 Ways to Prepare Now for Impromptu Summer Fun
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- Pack a bag of supplies to leave in the car. (Don’t forget to replenish as you use these items.)
- Sunscreen ~ Most kids like the sunscreen spray like this. Mineral based sunscreen, which also works well as an insect repellant, is great for babies.
- Insect Repellent ~ This one has natural sunscreen and insect repellent together. This insect repellant is bug spray with Deet.
- Two Complete Outfits (Shorts, T-shirt, Socks, Undies) (Long Pants, Long Sleeve T-shirt, Socks, Undies)
- Extra Play Sneakers
- Emergency Potty
- Swimsuits, Beach Towels, and Sun Hats
- Keep a stash of snacks handy (or in the car) (Don’t forget to replenish as you use these items.)
- Continue (or start) packing lunch every night and put it in the refrigerator. If you decide to go somewhere at the last minute, it’s already packed. If not – you don’t have to prep it while kids are hanging on your leg. Or make them come inside early while you get lunch together. Win Win.
- Throw out the “schedule” and follow your kids natural rhythms. Where do you need to be anyway? If you have toddlers, let them sleep in the car or stroller on a long walk. Change up your routine and do something a little differently. Visit a NJ beach that doesn’t require beach tags. Leave the stroller in the car and meander while holding your kids hands or teaching them to walk near you. Go to the ice cream stand AFTER dinner. Catch a free NJ concert or one of these free and cheap kids movies in New Jersey.
- Visit our Calendar of New Jersey Events so you always have available options for free and low cost summer fun at your fingertips. Better yet sign up for our 100 Days of Summer Family Fun newsletter by texting Jerseyfun to 66866 and every day we’ll email you a listing of the next day’s events. We also have newsletter options for North Jersey, Central Jersey, and South Jersey or statewide. Click over to find the option that’s right for you.
What are you waiting for? Get out there and explore!
Once you’ve given this a try, let us know how it went, or if you have anything to add about having spontaneous summer fun with your kids. We’d love to hear all about your impromptu summer adventures in New Jersey.