Four F’s of Summer Parenting


As you read this I am driving 700 miles round trip (in one day!) to bring my daughter home from college!  WOOT!  I am really excited to have her back at home.  It has been a year of growth for both of us and I think our relationship will never be the same….in a good way!

Which had me thinking that summer is just around the corner.  In our neck of the woods school does not get out until late June, but I know in other areas of the country the count down is nearly into single digits!  You are either excited as a mom, or dreading it.

Things tend to change in the summer, less structure and routine can cause frustration – unless you have some set principles in mind. Just because it is summer doesn’t mean you are off duty as a parent or should your kids expect to backslide.

Here are my four F’s of parenting for a  summer full of fun and less frustration, and yes, they are good all during the year too!

Be Firm

Clearly state expectations and consequences and adhere to them when your child acts inappropriately.  It can be easy to allow behavior to escalate or get out of control in the summer when you do not clearly state expectations and also remain consistent.  We tend to slack off a bit when things are more relaxed, but we all know the end result – not necessarily good.  Make sure you keep consistent and your kids will have a much better idea of how much they can trust what you say and if you mean it.


Consequences should fit the crime.  Have a few consequences that are in your back pocket so that you can easily respond to situations rather than allowing things to slide by.  In the case of recurring behavior, consequences should be stated in advance so the child knows what to expect and your consistent follow through is key to your child making better choices.


Even though summer can often lead to more work for us moms, find your own groove to create a routine that will allow you to be the “fun mom” and enjoy making those great memories instead of always being stressed over wet kids running through the house or eating s’mores for dinner!


Learn to go with the flow – you will provide a great example to your children when they see things not going as planned and you are willing to quickly change gears.  If you have an outside activity planned and you wake up to rain, make sure you  have a back up plan you can quickly engage without a lot of drama!

Summer is a time to enjoy a change of pace from the school year. It’s an opportunity to focus on different interests or activities that you don’t have as much time for during the rest of the year.  Be sure to watch for the release of my Summer Survival Calendar filled with over 100 ideas to bust boredom and keep everyone sane this summer!

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