All the Fun Things to Do with Your Kids Before School Starts

How many of you are looking for a few fun things to do with your kids before school starts? Call me crazy, but I swear you can already feel fall in the air. There's a certain undercurrent to the air that hints of that crisp, cool weather that is on its way. I can breathe it in in the mornings when I sneak downstairs to drink my first cup of coffee without my children. (Except, is it just me or do the kids always have a way of waking up early just when you're wanting some alone time?)

Even though I can feel fall in the air and I know it's coming, I'm still living in denial. Truthfully, I love fall and my kids have even mentioned a few times that they are more than ready to go back to school–they've actually asked me to go back-to-school shopping on several occasions already, which I found a little strange, but hey, I remember when it was fun to buy folders too. 

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But despite all the signs that summer is coming to a close and my kids clamoring for backpacks, I'm keeping us in a bubble of summer for just a little longer. And if you're anything like me, that summer bucket list of fun things to do with your kids hasn't exactly been fully checked off yet. So let's embrace the last waning days of summer and pack in all the fun we can. Here are a few ideas for fun things to do before school starts! 

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Ask for teacher discounts. Many areas are running special discounts for teachers before they head back to school and into the craziness of school. Today, our local aquarium and Legoland are both running free admission for teachers to get in and they can bring some friends too for discounted admission. Call up your local attractions and ask if they offer discounts for teachers–then round up your teacher friends for a day of fun!

Bonfires. With the nights getting cooler, it's a perfect time to set up that bonfire you've been meaning to host all summer. One genius tip for S'mores that I've been wanting to try is to swap out those chocolate bars for peanut butter cups. Sounds delicious!

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Backyard camping. This is definitely on my bucket list to do before we go back to school. It's cheap and easy entertainment for the kids, plus I remember how fun it was to wake up and see the world as a child going camping myself. And bonus? I get easily get my own coffee in the morning if I'm just camping in the backyard because #priorities. 

Water park. Confession: I have not taken my children to a single water park this summer. At all. I meant to, I had great intentions to, and we had more than enough hot days to do it, but um, it never actually happened. So consider this my official vow to make it happen before BTS!

One more beach day. I don't care if it's cool out, I just want one last beach trip!

Local festivals. End of summer means all kinds of local festivals, harvest celebrations, and more. There are blueberry festivals and local fairs and all kinds of fun to be had right around you–and most of the entertainment is totally free too. We have several free events coming up in our small town, including a farm festival, hot air balloon festival, and even a traveling fair. (Although to be clear, I'm a little nervous about letting my kids ride those rides, anyone else??)

Ninja warrior course. Tell me you are all as obsessed with this show as our family is? We absolutely love and I love how my kids are getting to see some kick-butt role models in the athletes, especially the females like Jessie Graff. It's so fun and inspiring to watch and we found a local gym that has a Ninja warrior course set up for the whole family to try. I went home with more than a few blisters, we'll just say that much. If you don't have a gym, consider setting up your own course at home!

Late nights. The thing I am going to miss the most about summer is our leisurely mornings with nowhere to go. I have a terrible (or awesome, depending on your view) habit of letting the kids stay up late watching movies or letting myself get sweet-talked into a late-night ice cream run. It's my favorite part of summer and I intend on living it up until the last minute.  

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So that's my plan for the rest of the summer–I know other moms have different theories about the best way to prepare for BTS. Sometimes it's best to get in a routine now and start those early bedtimes. But I'm all about soaking up summer while we can. Which camp are you in?

What are your favorite things to do with your kids before school starts?

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All the Fun Things to Do with Your Kids Before School Starts

Chaunie Brusie is a coffee mug addict, a labor and delivery nurse turned freelance writer, and a young(ish) mom of four. She is the author of "Tiny Blue Lines: Preparing For Your Baby, Moving Forward In Faith, & Reclaiming Your Life In An Unplanned Pregnancy" and "The Moments That Made You A Mother". She also runs Passion Meets Practicality, a community of tips + inspiration for work-at-home mothers. ... More

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