“June is Busting Out All Over” is a song from an old movie but is also appropriate for my article’s title. After months of being told to stay in and distance ourselves when going out for essentials, I am going to assume – and I know the saying about when you assume and what it makes me – that we have started to open up our state. If not, the title still works in that we are getting outdoors more with the warm, beautiful weather that June brings.
Social distancing with family and friends is much easier with the amount of space there is outside. There are games we can play without getting close to one another. Consider setting up corn hole boards, croquet, badminton, ring toss, bocce and any other games that can be set up where players can play without being close to each other. Children will love having games to play, getting exercise and enjoying the warm, sunny days.
Although there are many benefits to spending time in the sun, there are items to make sure we have on hand to protect our precious grands. It is easy to forget to put on sunscreen. Children run outside and start playing and, after an hour or more, it suddenly occurs to you that the sunscreen was never put on. There are many types of sunscreen, but one specifically for children is what to have. You can find them in spray or lotion form. This is one product where you want to buy a name brand. There have been incidents of children getting severe burns after being out in the sun with an off-brand sunscreen on. So, just a word of warning.
Along with the warmth of the summer season comes insects. Mosquitoes, bees, wasps, no-see-ums, and fire ants, to name a few, can put a damper on outside activities. Keeping insect repellent on hand will make outdoor playtime much more successful. Companies that spray for mosquitoes may be a good consideration if you plan to spend a lot of time in your yard.
If your grandchildren will be spending much of the summer with you, you may go on outings to a pool or lake. If they have not already had them, consider signing them up for a swim program. Even babies can benefit by taking lessons with a specially trained instructor. There is a reason pools are considered an attractive nuisance and require having fences around them. Children just see the fun of splashing around in the water. They don’t realize the dangers, especially if they can’t swim. It is a heartbreaking statistic of the number of drownings that occur. Research shows that contrary to opinion, a drowning person does not thrash around and call out. This is a reason that those around may not realize the person is in trouble. For extra caution, life jackets are a good option.
Now, with all the protection in place, it is time to think of all the fun summer brings. June is a wonderful month. Usually, the children are just getting out of school for the summer and are ready to go and do. This year, they have been home since March, not spending time with friends, not going on field trips. If areas are opening, this will be opportunities to visit places that the grandchildren will enjoy.
Whatever your plans, hopefully it will be able to include family. For many, quarantining from children and grandchildren has been the most difficult. May this summer be one of safety, health, and the happiness of family gatherings.