Be intentional with your planning and goal setting this summer by using this Printable Summer Planner! It’s a great way to get organized and create some structure and routine for your family this summer.
I can hardly believe it, but it’s almost summer! And even though school doesn’t let out around here until the middle of June, I’ve already been signing the kids up for summer camps and swim lessons, planning vacations and day trips, and trying to set some goals for my summer at home with both kids. Since we’re expecting baby #3 in October, I’m trying to be more focused and intentional about this summer – partly because I want to spend quality time with our kids before becoming a family of 5, and partly because I know advance planning now will be helpful for my very-pregnant-summer-self!
I was amazed at how quickly last summer got away from me. We spent many lazy days at home – not that there’s anything wrong with that – but before I knew it school was about to start and we’d missed out on lots of the summer things I wanted to do with the kids. For example…we only went to the pool one time, failed at completing the library’s summer reading program, didn’t make it to a theme park the kids had been asking for, and only visited a few different parks out of the 40+ in our region. It certainly wasn’t a *bad* summer by any means! But there had been a lot of things floating around in my head that I’d wanted to do as a family that we just didn’t get around to.
This summer will be different! Two and a half months of summer break really isn’t that much time…and once we add in our family vacation and some other things that are already on the schedule, we’ve got precious little summertime together before my oldest goes back to 1st grade, my youngest starts preschool, and we add a newborn to the mix. So, as part of my “organized summer” goal, I created my own printable summer planner binder!
I’ve purchased and tried to use planners before, but I have a hard time sticking to it. We have a big wall calendar in our command center that serves as our master schedule-keeper, and it works pretty well for us. But when it comes to planning out our summer, I found I needed something a little bit more detailed than the wall calendar, but not as big and involved as a yearly planner. That’s how this Printable Summer Planner was born.
I started with a simple one-page At a Glance Calendar to sketch out our major summer events – a week at the beach, summer camps, weekends away, etc. Then I created monthly calendars for the months of May through August to write down more detailed plans and events – mostly to keep track of events happening around town like farmer’s markets, craft fairs, outdoor concerts, free movies, etc. Finally, I created a Weekly Planner Page so I can sit down on Sunday night and make a more detailed plan for our week, including errands, a to-do list, and a place to jot down other odds and ends.
The calendars and weekly planner page will help me keep track of our schedule and appointments, but I was also looking for ways to be more intentional about our “unplanned” days, too. That’s why I put together a Weekly Summer Activity Plan. Each day of the week will have a “theme” to help us structure our days a little bit…but with enough flexibility that it won’t be stressful or busy. I can’t take credit for coming up with this myself – there are loads of variations on this idea on Pinterest. I put together a plan that will work well for us, and I think it will help me to be proactive with our summer days rather than spending most of our days at home. (I’ve got a whole post about this daily theme thing and how we’re planning to use it, plus a free printable version of this page for you to use – see that here!)
To go along with our theme days and also as a way to just write down all the ideas floating around in my head, I created a bunch of different checklists and worksheets to keep in our Printable Summer Planner. Here’s what you’ll find inside:
Parks to Visit – we’re going to try to go to a different park each week, and there are more than 40 different parks in our region! This will help me plan out the parks we’d like to get to – both our well-loved favorites and some new ones to explore.
Books to Read – I’ll likely print out multiple copies of this and fill out one for my daughter (who is reading at a third grade level!) and one for me. Our local library has an amazing summer reading program, so I’ll be able to track the books she’s completed on their online portal as well.
Daily Chore List – I’m not great at requiring my littles to do chores…mostly because it takes them twice as long to do it as it would just take me to do it in the first place, and then I have to do it over anyway. But I want them to get used to helping out around here, so I’m making a list of jobs for them. If your kiddos are older, this would be even more helpful to write out clear expectations.
Random Acts of Kindness – I believe it’s vitally important to teach our kids to do kind things for others…not just for the sake of helping other people, but because it shows them that it feels GOOD and can be really FUN to do nice things for others! I think we’ll spend time brainstorming what kinds of ROAKs we can do over the summer, and then try to get to at least one new one each week.
Summer Bucket List – this has been helpful for me in planning out and prioritizing the things I’d really like to do this summer – individually, during the day with the kids, and as a family on the weekends. There’s no way we’ll get to everything we all want to do, but writing it all down means we can pull out the top 5 or 10 things off our list and make them a priority.
I also spent some time browsing various blogs to compile a list of 100 Activities for Summer. I figured having a “master list” to go to whenever the kids get bored would be a great resource…plus it will be fun to cross them off one-by-one and see how many we can do!
Finally, I put together a Summer Goal Planning Worksheet. I wrote out 5 simple questions that I believe will help both my kids and myself thing through some individual goals for the summer.
If you’d like to see the pages in more detail, I made a little “video tour” of the binder along with how I’m planning to use each page myself. Here’s the video:
Even though I began with the goal of just creating a little printable summer calendar for myself, it evolved into something much bigger…as you can see ;-) So I decided to package it all up together as this 16 page Printable Summer Activity Binder and offer it for sale in my Etsy shop. If you, like me, are looking for ways to be a little more proactive with your summer this year, I think you’ll find it very useful!
But if you’re looking for just a simple free printable summer calendar to help get your summer sketched out, you’re in luck! I’ve included the monthly calendars for May, June, July, and August here for free. (If you’re looking for the “At a Glance” one page 2018 calendar, you can find that in the full package here.)
Whew! Writing all that out for you makes it sound like I’m going to be a task-master this summer…but really, I think that by being more organized and proactive about our plans on the front-end, I’m setting up our family to be able to spend some true quality time together. I’m not micro-managing our calendar by any means, and just about everything is flexible, so we’ll have plenty of opportunities to be spontaneous. I’m just excited to soak up some sun, relax, and have a beautiful and fun summer together with my loved ones. I wish the same to you!
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