Tonawanda News


September 17, 2012

Falling into a new season with kids -- from movies to spooks

Tonawanda News — Well, summer is over. Despite a number of educational changes for my children this year, they have successfully, and very happily, started school. My husband and I joined parents everywhere in breathing an immense sigh of relief.

Now what?

After the non-stop bustle that was our summer ... and then preparing for the school year ... what’s next? Even if we were so inclined to sit still for a while, there’s no way that would work well with two extremely active little boys. But still, there’s this sort of hiatus, a sense of taking a deep breath between the start of school and the next phase in our year.

Once we exhale, I’ve already started considering ways to fill in those days and occupy the kids. And I’m starting to remember why autumn is really one of my favorite times of the year.

Everyday fun

All those everyday sorts of activities that were eclipsed by the summer hubbub and near-constant outdoor play? We’re bringing them back. The weather tends to be fairly beautiful during Western New York fall, but soon enough those nights will start getting chilly and sunset times will start getting even earlier. (My 4-year-old is already a little confused by this, leading to an impromptu lesson in basic astronomy one evening.)

We’re creating a family movie night once a week. I want my kids to see some of those Disney classics that I grew up with, and when we finally do make it to Disney World (a family goal), they’ll have a good background for all those beloved characters and their stories. Add popcorn and pull out the couch and voila ... a true home theater.

Our family reading times will return as well. Books are a major part of our lives anyway, but a chosen story before bedtime and frequent games with flashcards to help back up school lessons are always a good idea. The chapter-a-night book of the moment is “The Wind in the Willows,” one of my favorites.

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