Lazy Days of Summer: My Kids Have Grown into my Helpers!

As summer is winding down, it really does make sense to consider why we started calling these days the “Lazy Days of Summer.”

I find that my kids are getting bored. That they’re actually ready to start back to school. To be honest, I don’t want summer to end. I love the long, hot days. Late family dinners and not having a tight schedule. It’s actually sad to me when summer ends.

But, on a more domestic note, I am finding jobs for my kids. Outside chores are essential (water the plants, clean the pool, mow the lawns, weed the beds). But inside jobs, other than Kitchen Duty, bathrooms and picking up their rooms, I have to think up ideas for them.

One job for my daughter is to iron my cloth dinner napkins! Easy and quick.

The other thing is for them to help me out by making jam. The recipe that I posted here is a cinch! Even kids can make it!

I ask my kids to pick the berries, wash and stem them, and then follow through with the recipe.

To make it easier, I’ve taped this Kraft Foods recipe inside my kitchen cupboard door. Easy access!

One job that I really dislike, and I agreed to pay $5 for, was to clean the fridge in the garage. Sparkling clean! I remember in past years paying a teen friend of ours to help with chores (like the fridge). Now my kids have grown into my helpers!

Are your kids getting bored with summer and ready for school? What jobs are on your list?

(Yes, we still have a bumper crop of strawberries, which came on very late this year! My hands are dirty and wet as I type … just picking a beautiful bowl of berries.)

13 comments on “Lazy Days of Summer: My Kids Have Grown into my Helpers!”

  1. I know my parents weren’t against child labor, and now that I’m off on my own, I appreciate knowing how to take care of a home: inside and out.

    Hope you’re surviving while everyone is back at school!

  2. Same here, Sandy. Can’t wait until school starts … one more week of “finding” more chores.

    Last week:
    Vac/handwash all the cars
    Bicycle to the hardware, store, grocery, for me instead of me driving
    Helping a young mom with 3 boys who is MORE ready than I am for school to start!
    weeding/compost turning
    scrubbing the garbage cans
    scrubbing lawn furniture
    organizing home videos of their baby days (watching them on the old VCR, too )
    archiving books in dad’s library
    ironing dad’s business shirts

    and if we run out of stuff next week? WE’LL START GOING THROUGH CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS and ski clothes! Toss the yuk, test the lights, etc : )

    deb meyers

  3. Hi Sandy,

    I wanted to let you know that I went over to friends house and she made your luscious zucchini pasta recipe. The same friend (Karen H) made your strawberry bruchetta for my birthday party. With all this love going around I guess it time for me to buy your book! Hope to see you soon. Cheers!

  4. My kids have been counting the days to the start of school for the last two weeks. They have spent a lot of time together this summer and they are ready for a break. As for chores, they have been my official “vegetable pickers” in our vegetable garden.

  5. Love your book. So many great recipes to try. Tonight is the black bean and sweet potato!! I miss having the children around to help with the chores but as you get older and they leave home, it seems there are a lot less of them!! It’s all good!!

  6. I love it. Our kids have standard chores they are required to do.

    But beyond that — the bigger, specialty jobs… I’ll post a list of items (for which I’ll actually pay) on the ‘fridge on a Saturday. It’s surprising how motivated the kids get when the see the $$$ signs. :)

  7. My oldest daughter has started high school, so my middle schooler is helping me do a ton of things…like paint the deck! Love it!

  8. I just wanted to let you know your book came in the mail from Barnes and Noble yesterday and I love it…..

  9. I have, just this week, given my 16 yr old son the job of folding clothes and unloading the dishwasher. I know…I know…he should have aleady been doing this!

  10. Thank God for teenagers! They can do a lot, can’t they?

    I’m ready for back-to-school. . . I think we all do better when we’re on more of a schedule. I hate to see the end of our lazy days, but for the most part I’m ready to roll. :)

    Will moves back into the dorm next Wednesday. Go Duke!

  11. My youngest son start school this week. Best chore for him now that he’s driving is car maintenance…especially washing, drying, windows, interiors, vacuuming, etc. Next best chore is organizing his closet and drawers, getting ready for school. He procrastinated on that one most of the summer, but finally finished last week. My fav chore is to have him fill my car with gas then stop at the “water store” and fill up our big 3-gallon jugs of water then bring them home and fill our 1-gallon jugs with water. Nice to have big strong boys for that job!

  12. I totally believe in child labor! :) My children are much smaller, so their chores include sweeping under the table, helping with laundry, setting the table, and dusting. We have accumulated a lot of bananas in the freezer, so we’ll be making banana bread here and they love to help with that!

  13. What great ideas to include your kids!

    Btw, I just received my copy of your book, “The Reluctant Entertainer”. It’s beautiful and I can’t wait to try some of the recipes. It’s such an easy read too with lots of suggestions. Great job Sandy!

    I’ll spread the word since I really love it.

    Blessings and love,

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