Tag Archive: VBS


Summertime, Summertime

It is summer time.

The kids are home and driving the husband crazy.

This is when working at home can suck. You have deadlines to live by but the kids want all of your attention. And a big fight is the best way to get it.

So what do you do as a work-at-home parent when the other parent works out of the house?

We have come up with a three-prong plan.

Image by Sanguglen

First of all, plan a chore list everyday or most days depending on your schedule. Our lists comprise of things that have to be taken care of everyday such as pet care, music practice time and reading.  I also throw things on to keep the house picked up. They do jobs around the house as well as keep their rooms cleaned up.

This year I told the kids that if their jobs are not done when I get home from work, there will be consequences. Dad should not have to stand over them every moment of the day to make sure the chores are done. I will take away devices, turn off the tv, and ban friends from the house. They also know I will follow through on this.

No one wants to lose screen time.

Image by Phaewilk

Secondly, we utilize every Vacation Bible School (VBS) program we can find. For one week during the morning or the evening, kids get to learn a little about Jesus while making crafts and singing songs. Many of their friends are there and a good time is had by all.

One of the churches is doing a one day VBS on a Saturday. Yep, the kids are going to that one as well. Luckily, most of the VBS programs at various churches are well spaced out so just when staying at home all of the time gets a little boring, they are off to another church.

My personal jar of boredom buster ideas

Lastly, I have the “I’m Bored”  jar. Other people have posted blog entries about their jar. I loved one post that listed 150 different ideas to break the curse of boredom.

Of course, this was from a stay-at-home mom who was trying to come up with ideas for winter/Christmas break. And I applaud her creativity from which I completely stole as I worked on my “I’m Bored” jar.  The slips of ideas I put in were more relative to the interests of my kids but I did write out about 150 different ideas.

I have things that involve raspberry picking, going to the Farmer’s Market or writing a letter to Grandma. I ask that they go with whatever hits the hand first but the kids have been known to sift through the slips until they find one they like.

It doesn’t hurt that we have the County Fair near the end of the summer which means there will be things to get ready. And the end of fair always seem to signal the end of summer, especially when band camp starts the next day.

But for now, it is time to enjoy hotter than hot days that end with cool breezes in the evening. There are fruits to be picked, books to read, and water sprinklers to dance under.

Bring it on!!!!

How do you deal with  Summer Boredom Syndrome at your house?

Picture by Mensatic

 

When summer hits, the one thing I can depend on is vacation bible school or VBS to the uninitiated.  

I may not be able to afford summer camp but my kids can go to one church for a week and have a boatload of fun. They make crafts, sing songs about Jesus, and have fun snacks.  

Some of my friends might think I am a little loony on this. After all, my kids will hit four VBS programs this summer. That can be a lot of schlepping around but it is totally worth it.  

They have been to programs with space themes, heroes, heroes and space, and, this week, a cowboy ranch. In years past VBS themes have hit the beach, gone camping and did a VBS in a neighbor’s backyard.  

Last week, the kids talked about how they had chicken nuggets at the church down the street from our house. There were cookies and other  

Picture by Xandert

 

goodies. Plus there were crafts and picture frames. One VBS made a door-hanger that had white board-like paper to leave notes.  

At our church, we put star sprinkles on small ice cream cups one night. Another night they had trail mix. There was a cheese stick combined with fruit. That was a mixed bag but for the most part, the kids loved it.  

Here is what I like. Many of these programs have a mission component. They are collecting money or canned goods or special items to give to people in our country or far away who need basic items we take for granted. Our church collects pop tabs for the Ronald McDonald Houses. It is important that my kids learn from me, and from others, that giving is the best thing that you can do.  

 Here is another thought. Who knew you could have fun at church? Many of us grew up being yelled for making noise or fidgeting or running in the church. But during VBS we encourage the kids to sing loudly, which they do and seldom on key. We encourage them to yell bible verses. Then they go outside to run, scream and yell a little more. Suddenly, being a Christian is not some solemn duty. You have real joy in your heart that is reflected in your actions.  

Furthermore, a church that has VBS tells me they are open to families. VBS may be a marketing ploy to get those families in the door. But you know if a church is right for you when you just listen and feel. That was one of the reasons we picked our church that we now attend. And it has nothing to do with other churches being bad because the other churches in our area have great pastors and good congregations. This one just struck our hearts in some way.  

Picture by Anita Patterson

 

One of those ways was welcoming our children who are rambunctious, to say the least. Many kids I know are that way. But by giving them the space to do that and teach them how to reflect of Jesus and their faith in him are two lessons churches should give. All of that can happen in VBS.  

So this week, as I send my kids to their fourth VBS program of the summer at the Baptist church, I know that they are having fun as well as learning lessons about faith.  

I wonder what crafts they will bring home this week…