How was your July 4th weekend? I don’t know about you but I’m a big fan of the holidays landing on a Tuesday. It makes it feel like the longest weekend ever!
Our family jam-packed events and parties into the weekend — starting with the US Museum of the USAF in Dayton on Saturday, church and pool time on Sunday, BBQ with friends on Monday and a parade and another BBQ on Tuesday. I’m a little tired just recapping all that — but we did all the summertime things and loved every minute of it.
All that said, I’ve noticed on the long weekends that negative behaviors can start creeping up more than normal. While I expect “normal” toddler/preschooler behavior at any given point, a combo of heat + not enough sleep + a super busy weekend & tired parents means it’s breeding ground for fighting, yelling, not sharing and temper tantrums.
While I address truly bad behavior when/if it happens, I also know that it’s going to be up to me to help them recalibrate and recenter after a big weekend like that (same goes for Christmas and Easter time). Keeping them running on our normal go-go-go schedule isn’t what’s right for them or for me, so I like to make some adjustments to the first day out of a long weekend.
Here’s what I do to help my kids find balance and rest after a busy holiday weekend:
- Keep water bottles filled. Skip the juice and make water fun. Put stickers outside of it (Contigo water bottles are our current favorites). Encourage them to take sips between activities.
- Plan for a “boring” day at home. I’m all about adventures and staying busy during the day with the boys, but sometimes what we all need more than anything is to do nothing. Rest. Get bored. I’m not even that fanatical about screen time on these days. We all need to lounge around sometimes.
- Slater on the sunscreen. Just like any other day, but keep it coming if you are outside. Sunburns can make a tired toddler plain miserable (and adults too for that matter). Lately I’ve been liking the Babyganics sunscreen. It blends easily and has a solid list of ingredients.
- Make fresh fruit accessible. I like to cut up a bunch of unexpected fruits we don’t always keep on hand so it’s fun and keep in a big bowl in the fridge. When they are hungry, I’m bringing that out first since fruit can help give them both vitamins, natural sugar and help with hydration.
- Look back on pictures from the weekend. My kids love looking at pictures on the phone and telling me what they enjoyed. We keep flipping back to our weekend pictures and talking about how much we loved seeing friends and family!
- Get back to a normal bedtime and early naps. On days like this I make our naptimes and bedtimes a priority and even inch them up about 15 minutes. The boys were up really late two nights in a row, so they have some catching up to do. I’ve noticed sometimes they even sleep longer when they go down earlier.
On to the linkup!