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Posted: May 23, 2013 8:00 a.m.

Quality Time

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Chances are someone you know is graduating from high school this weekend. It’s a bittersweet time for everyone, from parents to kids – well, maybe not everyone. Teachers are probably pretty stoked to be getting rid of some of your precious angel babies. But I digress. And with graduation comes the end of school for kids from kindergarten through college, but what to do with the little buggers when they aren’t in school for the better part of the day?

Well, for your graduates, practice letting go, but try to get a little family time in there as well. It will be nice to have some recent memories to take with them, and for you to keep with you, when they are away at school. At least for a while until they run out of money and start calling, pretending to miss you in a desperate ploy to get cash.

For the little ones – or the younger ones – it can be tricky. It’s hot, so you don’t really want to spend a lot of time outside, but it’s summer, so you hate to be stuck inside the house. It’s a sticky, sweaty Catch 22, I know. This makes places like White Water and all of the rivers and lakes around this area perfect. I was just told about the Porterdale YAK Club, and how for pretty cheap, you can rent a kayak and take a paddle down the Yellow River. Bonus: You don’t have to know what you’re doing because it’s an easy ride. Perfect for the kids, and if they get hot, they can jump in the river.

But how about having an at-home day? Take a day off, or use a weekend if you need to, and get on Pinterest. There are crafts to make – even for the woefully uncrafty like me, treats to bake, ideas that you can share with your kids to spend the day together and all done with the AC running! End the evening with popcorn and a movie in bed. It’s quality time AND you get to actually do something as well.

Most of all, remember that even though it’s sticky and gross outside, you can still enjoy your time together. For the parents of those kids graduating and heading off to start the next chapter of their lives, don’t you wish you’d had popcorn in bed just one more time with your kids before they got too cool to hang out with you? Don’t miss out while they’re little, and don’t ever think they are too old to have fun with mom and dad. And if they think they are, well…they still live under your roof and YOU make the rules. At least for the next couple of months!

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