A Little Structure is OK During the Lazy Days of Summer

For most students, the “lazy days of summer” are sacred. They are filled with happy memories, and there are no papers that need to be written, no going to bed or getting up early, and no teachers spouting rules and expectations.

But that doesn’t mean that all day, every day should be spent swinging lazily in the hammock or lounging by the pool. In other words, your future happiness isn’t dependent on every summer day of your childhood being free and unstructured. In fact, it might even be a good idea partake in a useful activity each and every day. As Chaucer said, (perhaps someone else said it first, but Chaucer definitely said it too), “Idle hands are the devil’s tools.” While perhaps extreme, but you get the idea.

No one is suggesting that you clean on Monday, polish the silver on Tuesday, and refinish the floors on Wednesday. Valuable tasks can be easy, fun, and relatively quick. Here are some ideas:

  • Volunteer at a nursing care facility on bingo day (it’s really kind of fun!)
  • Volunteer at vacation bible school (cute kids!)
  • Swim or bike (also known as exercise)
  • Take a drawing class
  • Read a book or two
  • Write a letter to a relative
  • Learn to cook scrambled eggs
  • Attend your church’s youth group

There are also less popular, but still worthwhile options:

  • Pull weeds
  • Clean out a drawer
  • Complete a few math practice sheets

Assuming the condition of the drawer and the degree of weed invasion in the yard aren’t unreasonable, none of these should take much longer than an hour. And the remaining 23 hours of your day can still be lazy.

That said, these are merely summertime suggestions. There are, and always will be, days that are meant to be 100% unproductive. And summers aren’t just for kids; parents are also entitled to summer fun and relaxation. There will be no judgement from us – because there’s only one whose judgement matters. Anyone else’s is simply unproductive.