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I Absolutely Cannot Let My Kids have a Schedule-Free Summer

Summer is upon us, and if you listen closely, you can hear the collective groan of working parents everywhere. Sure, we enjoy the longer days, warmer weather, and bare feet on the sand as much as anyone else, but the summer months also mean juggling work responsibilities on top of kids who want to eat popsicles for infinity and play at the pool until their fingers are pruney.

It can be tricky, finding the balance that allows your kids to not only enjoy summer but also ensures that Mommy isn’t tearing her hair out because she can’t make her deadlines.

Some parents are able to roll with the punches when the days become hot and humid. I know plenty of parents who go with the flow and deal with their work life as it happens, amidst screeches of delight from waterslides and "Hey, Mommy, watch me!" coming from the swings. When I see a mom working on her laptop at the park while her kids frolic, I'm envious because I have a really hard time multitasking in the summertime. In fact, I downright suck at being the work-at-home mom who goes with the flow.

As my kids got older, I felt guilty about not being the mom who was always taking her kids on fantastic excursions and giving my kids the most magical summer of all time. There just weren’t enough hours in the day to complete my work assignments, and I was pretty sure my kids’ brains were going to rot out of their heads from too much screen time. I was short-tempered, and my kids were perpetually crabby because summer days are long when no one knows what to do next.

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