It can be hard managing work and kids as a single parent. During the summer, this can get even trickier. Here are some ideas to help you to schedule an interesting but stress-free summer.
Single parents are a growing breed. They manage to work and spend time with their children. Just when they think they have everything figured out, summer comes. Now, the script is changed.
Just the thought can lead to anxiety and stress. How will you pay for childcare? Can you plan a vacation? What about the other parent? Keep reading to see how to deal with these issues.
Single Parent Tips for Summer
* Plan ahead – Take a weekend or two in the early spring and begin making plans for the summer months. Waiting until the last minute increases stress and also the probability that plans will fall through. Create a list of what to include: time off from work, time spent with the other parent and time away.
* Talk to the other parent – If your child has their other parent in their lives, check with them to see about the summer visitation schedule. They may plan a vacation for your child. Coordinate it with your vacation plans so there is no overlap.
* Make plans for childcare – Full-time day care can cost a pretty penny. If you are used to after-school care, check with the school to see about summer programs they may offer or know of that are low cost and convenient for single parents. If you do use childcare services, be sure to get on the list early. Also know that you will have to pay for weeks even when you are away for vacation to hold your child’s spot.
* Investigate summer camps – Day camps give kids time away from home but they are more task-oriented than many day care centers. Kids can meet new friends, go on field trips and learn new skills. Some even provide lunch and snacks for your children. Sign up early because spots go fast.
* Plan a vacation for you and your children – There are websites that offer deals on cruises, all-inclusive resorts, outdoor adventure tours and plenty more. The key is to book early. Also, if you can go in with a friend who also has kids, this can reduce the rate per family. Sharing costs is a great way to vacation and not break the bank.
* Schedule time alone – Single parenting can take its toll. While your child is spending time with their other parent, plan a few activities for yourself. Pamper yourself at the spa or sit at home and do nothing at all. Take a mental break to regroup and rejuvenate your life.
Being a single parent can be hard but the summer doesn’t have to be a bust. Plan time alone, vacations and fun for your kids.