- Catch fireflies (aka lightening bugs). This one elicited more of a parent memory than a childhood one. My girls will probably remember how the fireflies could blink in time to the Blue Danube Waltz. Da-da-da-da blink-blink blink-blink. . .
- Read a book under, or in, a tree. I spent many hours reading in a treehouse during elementary school summer vacations. I never once thought to invite my mom to join me but I would have been thrilled if she had. . .
- Go on a family bike ride. Last week a kindergarten child arrived at Vacation Bible School on his bike. Mom was just behind, pulling a toddler trailer. Everyone was all smiles!
- Have a picnic. These days we have such elegant facilities at home that we don't often pack up the food and go to the park but we should, even if it's just doing the rest area instead of McD's on the family vacation. Great people-watching and interesting conversations happen when we leave the backyard. . .
- Go stargazing. Take a blanket and some bug repellent and look up at the sky. Wonder together about God and heaven and all of creation. Nothing inspires those conversations like stars. . .
- Skip stones at a creek or pond. Help your child learn to be still by bringing his or her focus to a single activity. Let the breeze and the water and your child's concentration speak to you and quiet your own soul. . .
There are 14 more ideas on the list but the point here isn't to keep you busy all summer. It is point you toward some core parenting and faith ideas:
- Good parenting isn't an accident - it requires planning, participation, and practice.
- Passing on the faith is done in those regular, small, moments where you speak from your heart.
Summer will lend itself to strengthening your parenting if you allow yourself to grab some sabbath rest with your children. They are paying attention to you all the time, and never more attentively than when you are out of your routine. Take advantage, and have a great summer!