Ahhh, summer break; it is just around the corner.
For most, it's a time of relaxation, vacations, and fruity drinks with little umbrellas. Sleeping in late, soaking up the sun, and parking a lounge chair on the beach or lake are some activities that our summer dreams are made of.
Dreams...that’s exactly what they are for coaching families.
To coaching families, the “break” in summer break is taken with a grain, nay a tablespoon full of salt because, let’s be real, “break” isn’t really in our vocabulary.
But Coach Wives are superheroes and we are pros at making dreamy summertime memories for our families. So, how do we do it? Here are some truths about living with Coach through summer “break” and tips on how to make the most of it.
Truth 1: The number of hours doesn’t change. It just shifts.
It’s no secret that coaching hours in-season are ridiculous. Well, summertime is no different.
Workouts, practices, meetings, camps, clinics ... all the things are still going strong. The only difference is that times shift. However, this shift means that morning practices/workouts & early afternoon meetings lead to Coach being home before dark. WOO HOO!!
Tip 1: Take advantage of summer daylight hours and nights with Coach.
Days in summer are long and that gives us more time to soak up summer with Coach. Pool/river/lake/beach time, whichever you have access to, can easily be shifted to an afternoon experience. Bring tiki torches, a to-go, outside dinner, a cooler, and have at it. Add sparklers, jars to catch lightning bugs, and a blanket to look at the stars and let that dreamy summer afternoon melt into a storybook summer night!
Truth 2: For SAHMs and teachers there is lots of free time—with just you and your school-aged kids.
School may be on a break, but Coach is still grinding. This means school-aged kids are at home all the time with no school work to keep them occupied. At first, it’s nice, but we all know it won’t take long for those jokers to start bickering, get bored, eat you out of house and home, and make you want to pull your hair out.
Tip 2: Keep some structure & do your research.
School provides kids with structure and they are used to functioning within a structured environment. Mimic that structure with a loose schedule for the summer. This can look many different ways based on kids’ ages, activities, interests, and needs. It can be an hourly schedule, or just a checkoff of things to do throughout the day (personal hygiene, chores, reading, devotion, outside time, etc). It may even be helpful to make a visual schedule/list and post it somewhere in your house.
Also, get to googlin’, sis! Look up local festivals, VBS, deals on water parks, summer camps . . . whatever suits your kiddos. The best part is that all of these activities can be done before Coach is home.
Truth 3: We only get 1, maybe 2, weeks of guaranteed no football a year—and those are sacred days.
Dead week! It’s like a holy week to coaching families. No workouts, practices, meetings. Nothing. We can generally count on Coach to be 100% available to our family on these most sacred days. A large percentage of us are even celebrating anniversaries because this is the only time throughout the year we can marry and honeymoon without scheduling issues.
Honestly, heaven help the parent, booster, admin, player, or anyone that calls or emails Coach during this time. And if it does happen the dang field house better be burning down.
Tip 3: Breathe and just be
Resist the urge to fill every moment of dead week with picture-perfect memories. Yes, these are the days that we cherish with Coach, but over planning can make dead week a chore. Some of us plan ahead and make reservations and that is great, but rest assured that it is 100% ok to stay home and just be with Coach. Beach houses, cruises, and Disney trips are great experiences, but early morning cuddles with your Coach in your own bed, catching up on your shows, and playing in the sprinkler with the kids are all just as valuable.
Truth 4: Summer = Time to move
A truth that we all know too well is that summertime is often when we must pack and move. Coaching families are nomads and moving is a part of our life. It brings new adventures and experiences and can be some of the most exciting times in our journey. However, packing boxes, loading a truck, and hauling your entire life to Timbuktu is...well...it sucks.
Tip 4: Joy through thankfulness
Moving time can be one of the most trying times for coaching families. There are always so many emotions involved, on top of the actual act of moving which is a chore to say the least. For the range of emotions, find joy through thankfulness.
Thank God for the little things, the big things, and everything in between.
Thank you Lord for this opportunity.
Thank you God for the financial ability to move.
Thank you Jesus that we found a new home.
Thank you Lord that we will be closer to family.
Finding joy through thankfulness can help to regulate the mixed emotions that come with, yet another, move. As far as the moving itself goes—I got nothing, ladies. Hire some movers, and be done with it. Then, thank the good Lord above that moving companies are a thing.
Coach Wife, you are a Summertime Superhero! No doubt that summer 2021 will be the best one yet.