Monday, May 17, 2010

Make this a Summer to Remember!

Make this a Summer to Remember!

It is quite evident summer is just around the corner by all the countdowns on Facebook. The STUDENTS are READY for summer, which means no more homework, sleeping in and lazy days! The MOMS are READY for summer, too – no more homework, sleeping in and lazy days! We all anticipate the lifestyle summer brings and most of us have very happy memories of our summers gone by. As moms, many times we look up on August 15th and think to ourselves, “Wow, another summer gone by…where did it go? I wish we had done the things we talked about doing as a family, the things we wanted to work on and work through, so many ideas, just not enough time to make them happen!” Yes, we want to keep summer relaxed, heaven knows our kids are under immense pressure to perform all year long. But we can accomplish some strategic goals this summer while our children enjoy themselves and chill.

Luke 2:52 tells us “Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” So, let’s look at summer through that lens and make plans accordingly.

Wisdom – Most kids need to touch up on some subject through the summer. Our youngest daughter struggles with math. When she was younger, I would buy an age appropriate math workbook at Mardel and have her work in it 15-20 minutes a day. This would keep her thinking about math, and anybody can do 15 minutes. Most kids have summer reading due the first week of school – encourage that book to be read early on, so they can read some fun stuff, too. Readers ARE Leaders! High School students might need to take an ACT/SAT Prep class during the summer. is just one of many prep class websites to check out.

Stature – Most younger children don’t need encouragement to play outside during summer, but with the invention of video games, we might need to limit inside fun and dust off the bike or scooter! Also, summer can be a great time to try some new healthy recipes with the wonderful assortment of veggies and fruits to choose from. My friend, Richi, has put a new rule in place at her home – “Water only during meals!” Her high school boys can’t believe she is so harsh. Go Richi!

Favor with God – Spiritual growth can take place more so in the summertime than any other time of the year. The relaxed pace lends itself to devotions, worship and prayer. Making sure our kids have age appropriate bibles is key to their desire to grow. Devotionals are written for boys, girls, teens, tweens, families – check out your local bible bookstore. Moms can share with their children what God is doing in their lives as well. I love to text my kids with scripture and thoughts God has laid on my heart. The “ABC Scriptures” is an awesome way to grow and hide God’s word in our hearts. You can put together your own ABC Scriptures (a verse for every letter of the alphabet) or find a book with scripture already available. Take a couple of scriptures a week and they will have A-Z memorized by the time they go back to school!

Favor with Man – There are LOTS of opportunities to make an impact in our communities and in our homes during summer. I love to ask my kids, “How can I serve you today?” It has stuck and now they ask me that, occasionally. Service is key to Christian growth. Remember Mary and Martha? We want that balance for our families, as well. Service can start within the family and move outward. Your church home is a great place to inquire about service opportunities for your family. A few summers ago, I bought a “Southern Living Desserts” magazine and my daughters and I started cooking the desserts in the magazine. We would admire our work for a few minutes, then take the dessert to someone whom we felt would benefit from the (hopefully) delicious treat. We took desserts to neighbors, friends in the hospital, bible studies and my husband’s work associates. My girls not only learned to cook some amazing desserts, they saw that giving is truly greater than receiving. We logged in the magazine where each dessert went. It was special. Mowing a neighbor’s lawn who is ill, taking care of a friend’s kids while she takes a much needed nap or playing bingo at your neighborhood nursing home, are all ways to be the hands and feet of Christ.

Let’s make Summer 2010 a “Summer to Remember!!!” Stay cool!

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