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Kate Motaung grew up on the shores of Lake Michigan before spending ten years in Cape Town, South Africa. She is married to a South African and together they have three children. Kate is the author of the e-book, Letters to Grief, hosts the Five Minute Friday blog link-up, and has contributed to several other online publications. She blogs at Heading Home and can be found on Twitter @k8motaung.

13 Summer Staycation Ideas for Families with Kids

Kate Motaung
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Kate Motaung grew up on the shores of Lake Michigan before spending ten years in Cape Town, South Africa. She is married to a South African and together they have three children. Kate is the author of the e-book, Letters to Grief, hosts the Five Minute Friday blog link-up, and has contributed to several other online publications. She blogs at Heading Home and can be found on Twitter @k8motaung.

#parenting #Summer

Many kids count down to the end of the school year, but once summer break begins, some parents begin counting the days until it’s over. Kids love having more free time, but often it helps to have some planned activities to add a bit of structure to their days.

Here are some fun suggestions to make this summer staycation the best one yet. When boredom threatens to settle in, be ready with this arsenal of ideas.

• Create your own board game based on a favorite chapter book or movie — or maybe you could base your game on a book or section of the Bible, such as the ten plagues, the life of Joseph, or the book of Esther. Grab a posterboard and brainstorm some of the main action points in the story, then include them in your game.

• Play your own version of The Amazing Race, or create a scavenger hunt around your town. At the end, talk about how your family overcame the challenges and twists in the road.

• Pretend like you are researchers or historians. Research the history of the churches in your town. Try to find out which one is the oldest, and how it started. See if you can interview the pastor or some of the older congregation members. Write what you learn, and think about God’s faithfulness in preserving His church. Design a timeline or poster illustrating key events and interesting facts you discover.

• Make handmade greeting cards with words of encouragement or Bible verses, then deliver them to a nursing home in your area. See what a joy it can be to be a blessing and bring a smile to an elderly person’s face.

• Organize a neighborhood bake sale. Collect donated baked goods, sell them, and give the proceeds to a local charity or mission organization.

• Write letters or send a care package to someone serving in the military or on the mission field. For other ideas on how to encourage missionaries, click here.

• Hold your own Master Chef competition. Using only five or six ingredients, have a contest to see which family member can prepare the most appetizing dish.

• Check out some audio books from your nearest library. Go home, make some lemonade and popcorn, and enjoy the story!

• Make a list of five different countries around the world. Find a recipe for a traditional dish that represents a culture from each country. Block off a week on your calendar as Around the World Week, and plan to eat from a new region each evening.

• Plan a talent show. Invite friends or neighbors, and perform your favorite skits, songs, or poems for each other.

• Gather a few other families and meet at the park for a fun-filled track and field evening. Plan potato sack races, water balloon tosses, three-legged races, long jumps, and softball throws.

• Map out a frisbee golf course, grab some discs, and start a new hobby!

• Set up an obstacle course in your backyard, or in your driveway. Use sticks or sidewalk chalk to construct a course, find a stopwatch, and let the fun begin!

What are some unique activities your family enjoys doing together during summer break?

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