Spring is finally here and that means summer is just around the corner. What a time for making memories! I don’t know about you, but I had the best childhood, and any chance I get, I am sharing those experiences with my children. Catching tadpoles and crayfish, skinning knees, and drinking from the hose were all part of it. Here are my top picks for the memories that all parents should be reliving with their kids today.
When we were kids, we rode our bikes everywhere! Riding down hills (without a helmet, thank you very much!) and letting the wind blow through our hair, taking our feet off the pedals and putting them on the handlebars—these added that extra bit of thrill we all sought after. Take your kids on bike rides so they develop a love for it like we did.
2. Catching Lightning Bugs
What family back in the day didn’t have a “Ball” mason jar handy with holes poked in the lid to catch lightening bugs? We would go to a remote field at dusk. All of a sudden it became a twinkling wonderland of fairies and sprites with the sound of crickets singing! Magical indeed!
3. Lying in the Fresh-Cut Grass and Finding Shapes in the Clouds
The lazy days of summer spent lying in the cool grass and picking out the shapes the clouds made were staples of our summer vacation. Take time out and share these activities with your kids. They will calm their minds and teach them attention to detail! Can you make out Japan in this picture?
4. Flying a Kite
As a kid, I can’t tell you how many kites we got tangled in a tree or telephone wire! The thrill of the wind being just right and trying about 50 times, then finally—on the 51st try—success! Buy your children a kite and teach them how to soar high!
5. Looking for Good Lucky Four-Leaf Clovers
It’s the little things in life that make it so great, and finding a Four-leaf clover as a kid was like hitting the jackpot! We would spend what seemed like hours looking for the tiny green treasures! Press them in your favorite book to keep the memories alive. Simple, but joyous.
6. Chasing Down the Ice Cream Man
So many neighborhoods don’t have this piece of Americana circling their hood during the summer months, but luckily our city still has the ice cream man! This year he came early, and the music has gotten louder and the ice cream selections more vast. My children have radar ears now and I swear they can hear him from 10 miles away! The best!
Running after our ice cream man!
7. Going to a Drive-In Movie
I remember the first movie our family saw as a kid at the drive-in—”Jaws.” It scared my sister so badly her pizza flew up in the air and stuck to the ceiling of my grandparents’ car! Who remembers tuning in your stereo to hear the movie? Sadly, not many of these exist anymore, but luckily I am able to share this memory with my children with one nearby. If you get a chance to go, make sure you sit on the hood or the roof of the car!
8. Camping Out in the Backyard
What kid doesn’t love camping? Camping under the stars in your backyard with your parents telling ghost stories and making s’mores is the bomb! You may regret the mosquito bites, but definitely not the memories that you’ll make with your kids.
9. Star Gazing
Lying in the backyard at night and staring up at the sky to see who would be the lucky one to spot a shooting star was one of my favorite childhood memories. My kids love this activity, too, as it’s a great chance to learn about the different constellations. It’s cool to see them get excited when they spot the Big Dipper!
10. Playing Tag at Dusk
There was something about summer evenings that always warranted a game of tag just as the sun was setting. Trying to squeeze every last drop of time out of the day before you had to come inside, take a bath, and watch an episode of “The Muppets” before bed! My kids still beg us for “5 more minutes” of neighborhood games. A sound that is music to my ears!
What kinds of old school activities do you share with your kids? Let me know by leaving a comment!