This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Snapple®. The opinions and text are all mine.
Ask any parent with kids in school and they’ll confirm that weekdays between the hours of 3:00PM and 5:00PM are notorious for being difficult. Why?
- Your children have been in a controlled, structured environment all day and are ready to let loose
- Your spouse likely isn’t home from work yet to help out
- If you’re in the south, like me, it’s approaching the triple digits outside
- You’re probably trying to get dinner on the table during it all
No wonder it’s nicknamed “witching hour!”
Here are a few of my favorite tips for surviving the afternoon madness.
Consider nixing weekday extracurricular activities – This is especially true for younger elementary-aged kids. We tried doing karate twice per week, but had to give it a break until this summer. After being in a structured environment most of the day, my preschooler and 1st grader just can’t handle more of the same.
Encourage physical activity – For you if you feel up to it, but most importantly for the kids! Let them loose in the backyard to run about to their heart’s content, get some energy out, and engage in pretend play. At Sweet T’s school, everything but recess (including gym time) is structured. Kids need that free play as much as you need a small time-out every day. If your backyard isn’t an option check out a local park, botanical garden, a friend’s house, or take a walk around the block together. If the weather isn’t nice consider stopping at a fast food establishment that has a play place.
Allow quiet time – Sometimes Sweet T just absolutely melts down after school and isn’t feeling up to running wild outdoors. I’m not sure if it’s due to her introversion, social anxiety, or a little of both but sometimes she needs a good 30 minutes in her room after school where she can be absolutely alone. She has plenty of toys and books in there, and I make sure her little brother leaves her alone. This usually does more for her than trying to reason with or console her.
Provide snacks – I don’t know about your kids, but mine always come home from school starving. It doesn’t matter how much or little they eat for lunch, they want to tear into the kitchen cabinets as soon as their backpacks hit the floor. Try to have something ready for them that won’t spoil their dinner. Better yet, find something that can be taken outdoors. My kids love to eat on the porch or their little picnic table and go back and forth from their playset in between bites.
Moms, don’t leave yourselves out! You’re in need of an afternoon reset too. I’ve been enjoying Snapple® Takes 2 to Mango™ Tea after school (ok, sometimes on the way to pickup) for a refreshing afternoon boost. This new flavor is available at Walmart just in time for the warm days ahead!
Band together with other moms – One of my friends is fond of saying, “Two moms can conquer the world.” It certainly lightens the load to have other mothers around! About once per week, weather permitting, a group of us will meet up at a park near the school to let our kids play together. One mom is officially in charge of snacks for the kids since she brings the best ones according to them! I’ll be bringing the Snapple Mango Tea next time so it’s not just the kids who get to recharge their batteries. After all, we’ve all got to head home after the playdate and figure out what to make for dinner (Why do they want to eat every single night? *sigh*)
How do you reset during the afternoon? How can #Takes2ToMangoTea help? #Walmart