IMG_1349Sitting oceanside, watching the kids running in and out of the water’s edge, feeling the sun’s rays on my legs and the sand between my toes. Listening to the waves lap upon the shore as I delve into the books saved on my Goodread’s list. Ahhh…spring break 2015.

SCREEECH…..wake up mama! The kids are hungry, the laundry is calling your name, your husband is late for work and the downstairs toilet is overflowing. Welcome to the REAL Spring Break 2015. While many of our friends are enjoying warmth of the Florida coastline, we are staying put in Indiana. Thankfully, the weather for this coming week calls for a warmer temps and a break from the rain. For the second year in a row, we have decided to forgo a spring break in order to save our vacation budget for a larger trip in the fall. This year we will voyage to Disney World for the first time. Deep breaths. We are more of a beach vacation than amusement park family but I’m hoping our first trip to Disney will be epic. But first we must survive Spring Break 2015.

Last year I decided to have a laid back spring break “staycation”. We would take the day as it comes, fly by the seat of our pants, sleep late and enjoy the break from school and extracurricular activities. That lasted all of 2 hours. The remaining 166 hours of that week were filled with sibling fights, cries of boredom, missing our friends, and desperate trips to McDonald’s to play in the germ infested Playland. But this year…Mama Lee has a plan. My kids (and myself!) thrive on structure, routine, and wholesome food. So I am planning our Spring Break just like I hope to plan our trip to Disney. A good mix of planned activities, downtime, good eats, rest and fun.

Survival Step #1- Stock the house!

IMG_4893When the kids are home from school, my grocery budget goes out the window. At school they are able to survive from breakfast until lunch without snacking. At home, I have barely loaded the dishwasher with breakfast dishes before everyone is starving for a morning snack. So in preparation for our week at home, I loaded up at Traders Joe’s and Costco- nuts, fruits, seeds, veggies, deli meat, healthy snacks. I have meals and snacks planned for every day over break. We plan on using some coupons we earned at an egg hunt this weekend for a pizza lunch and we will vote on one dinner out this week. Fueling our bodies with whole foods is crucial for everyone this week!

Survival Step #2- Plan, plan, plan!

In reality, my kids do best when I serve as our family’s activity director. Thanks to Pinterest and amazing blogs like Pink and Green Mama, finding ways to fill our days can be fun. Several summers ago, I started planning theme weeks- water week, nature week, science week- to keep the kids’ minds busy over the long summer break. For Spring Break we are going to a couple of theme days-

BOOK DAY

Trip to the library and Barnes and Noble, crafts themed around different books,

book based meals and snacks, watching a movie that was once a book.

GARDEN DAY

Work outside in our garden, plant our potted herbs, create a compost container,

garden crafts,  trip to the garden store and Whole Foods

SPORTS DAY

Swimming at the YMCA, Bike rides, Family bowling night out, watch a sports themed movie, back yard relay

Survival Step #3- Enlist the help of others!

in the month leading up to spring break my inbox was bombarded with offers from various local places about activities they were hosting over break. My children could have spent the week playing soccer, attending gymnastics, or trying their hand at art. Ultimately, we decided on a fun filled day of gymnastics mid week. The kids will be able to tumble, swing, bounce under the careful guidance of gymnastics instructors while mommy finds some quiet. We will also venture the local nature center for some free programming along with visiting an indoor play land or two…without the McDonald’s!

If you are interested in any of the ideas I mentioned above I created a Spring Break 2015 Pinterest board. Also follow me on either Twitter or Instagram where I’ll be sharing our adventures using the hashtag #staycation2015

If you are another mama who has enjoyed or will be enjoying spring break at home, share your ideas!

I would love to hear from you!!