Celebrating June: How to Enjoy Your Children’s End-of-Year Events
Do I have a magic solution? Short of my football stadium fantasy, probably not. But here are some ideas that might make June more manageable.
- Planning helps. Since these events are rarely coordinated, it’s up to us to do the coordinating. Announcements start coming home in March. Get out that calendar and start building a picture of your month so you’ll know what to expect. Try not to schedule important work deadlines or other family events during the weeks that are overly full.
- Speak up. Get in on the planning when you can. If you already know that there is an event happening on a given Saturday that involves a number of kids, inform leaders of other programs. Unless they have kids in the other event, they probably won’t be aware of the potential conflict.
- Remember that most of your friends are in the same boat. My experience has been that people are only grateful if someone takes the lead and organizes carpools for rehearsals and practices.
- When events call for baking, switch off with a friend. I’ll make twice as many cookies for the Sunday School Bake Sale. You make twice as many brownies for the School Field Day. It’s much easier to bake once in quantity than to mess up the kitchen twice.
- Is a potluck attached to any events? Think about bringing pizzas from your local pizza shop. If you are a working parent, it’s just too hard either to put together a dish the night before the event, when you are exhausted, or just prior to an evening event, when you are too rushed and harried. Remember that this event is for your kids. It isn’t a cooking contest. The kids, frankly, will like the pizza better than most of the homemade specialties that wow adults.
- Is a modest gift for the teacher or leader of your child’s activity expected? Stock up throughout the year on little gifts for the people in your child’s life. Keep in mind that gift certificates to the local ice cream shop are often more appreciated than yet another doodad. This spreads out the expense and saves you time and money come June.
- Save some vacation time from work to use for the day or two that look like scheduling nightmares. Arrange with your employer to leave for home a couple of hours early. The simple fact of having time reduces stress considerably. Part of the pleasure of these events is helping your child into her or his costume, fixing hair, or making sure that everyone gets a good meal before a long evening out. When the rituals that surround getting ready can be slowed down, your child will feel like his or her special night is really important to you. It can mean a lot.
It’s June. This year, my four children are involved in a high school graduation, a dance recital, a violin recital, a Girl Scout awards ceremony, an elementary school picnic, a children’s theatre performance, and a high school dance production. These events speak to the stage of life we are in and how we are choosing to do it. No matter how hectic it sometimes feels, I remind myself that this is the good stuff.
Hartwell-Walker, M. (2020). Celebrating June: How to Enjoy Your Children’s End-of-Year Events. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 22, 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/lib/celebrating-june-how-to-enjoy-your-childrens-end-of-year-events/