Lazy Mom’s End of Summer Survival Guide

So it’s the last few weeks of summer, and you’ve been to every park and zoo and playground and bookstore and library with a play area, and you’ve worn out your welcome at every yard in a ten-mile vicinity.  You’ve even watched your living room become a massive fort/castle/pirate ship. (See example –>)

Perhaps you’ve given in to the boob tube a few times, and maybe (just maybe) you’ve let your kids watch Toy Story 2 and Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure a few times.  But now you’re sure that the glazed over looks and references to Hamm and Iridessa in their sleep are becoming a problem.  How does a parent manage to stay sane while saving the children from atrophy of the brain?

Sure, there are flashcards and more books and coloring books and projects and more playdates, but what if summer vacation has sucked all the joy out of those things by the middle of August?  Yes, indeed.  What if?

Here’s what this well-meaning, but sometimes kind of lazy, mom of pre-schoolers turns to on occasion:

Poisson Rouge – Talk about guilt-free computer time.  Between the music, various languages to learn, puzzles, and math games, this site will make you feel just dandy about letting your kid steal your computer time.  It’s free, but if you can manage it, throw them a few Euros or buy some products at their shop.  I donated ages ago, but I really want one of their t-shirts for myself.

Brave Dave – This is a super-cute, interactive book about a brave mouse named Dave. Simple enough for your four-year-old to show to his two-year-old sister, it’s by animator Dave Palmer (Blue’s Clues, Backyardigans).  The narration is provided by Kathy Najimy.  The end of the story includes a monster creating game that my kids love to play and giggle at.

The Sesame Street Game Player site has some cute games too.  My son loves the Dig for Dinosaurs game.  I think Dress Grover is fun, but you can check out other games here.

For a locally created diversion, check out a silly kids song – Jollity Farm – from a local dad.  And don’t forget the eBook app from another local dad – My Daddy.  It’s an interactive book that your child can read alone or with you.

Nick Jr. also has one of the easier to use Free Draw sites.  It’s true that you have to steel yourself against the onslaught of cute cartoon characters beckoning your children back to the television.  Stand firm: tell them Diego is on a business trip and Wubbzy has a cold.

Much more can be found, so let us know your favorite games for the pre-school (and elementary grades) set in the comments.

And then, after a little while enjoying the super-educational games, lead them back outside into the squint-inducing sunlight to play with truly 3-D toys and live in the absolutely real world.

Or at least the kinda real-world of make-believe Super-Hero Peace Pirates.


About That Unique* Weblog

Adjusting to car culture, dealing with leaving a career I loved, and spouting off along the way. Do The Most Good.
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6 Responses to Lazy Mom’s End of Summer Survival Guide

  1. georgettegilmore says:

    Love this! Poisson Rouge has been a favorite of ours since our oldest was 2.
    Would you be up for me running this on BK?

  2. you are the nicest mom ever – love the fort/pirate ship! and i will have to check out those computer sites, my kids have never really done anything but moshi monsters.

    my best idea is to get different colored marbles and hide them around the yard (dif. colors necessary so kids know whose are whose – mine aren’t so in to cooperative team efforts)

  3. Okay – I have no idea what a moshi monster is. It sounds vaguely like a green tea ice cream – which I love!

    Love the marble idea. Especially since I plan on starting a “good behavior” marble bank soon. My kids already have a hide-and-seek addiction. And marbles don’t get sticky like hiding raisins or M&Ms around. Gotta try something before the cold weather strikes!

    (To be honest, I thought you might vomit at the idea of all those characters beckoning…like Dora!)

  4. i may talk a good game in principle on my blog, but the end of summer is the end of summer and let’s face it mom fatigue is totally upon us. and if you don’t know what moshi monsters are stay away – they are all kinds of not good.

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