Or, if you’re a freelance writer with children at home: three desperate months of intermittent work while one child screams from a headlock by his brother. Cue the circuit of summer camps and playdates.
In addition to community events, here are three favorite places that satisfy both me and my kids:
While my friends flock to Chick-fil-a, we head instead to McDonald’s. My kids eat pancakes and enjoy a large play area that includes two computers with video games and a television streaming cartoons. Meanwhile, I sip $1 coffee and work with free Wi-Fi. The best part is that the kids, parents, and all entertainment are in one room. Call or scope out locations before you go, though, because not all locations have these features.
2. The library.
After picking out books, my kids scramble to sit by each other at a table of computers so they can play free online games together: pbskids.org, abcya.com, and funbrain.com top their list of favorites. The best part is that our library offers a weekly summer activity program during which parents are encouraged to stay in the lobby.
3. Inflatable places.
Monkey Joe’s is my go-to place when I need to meet a deadline. The kids happily eat pizza and jump with friends all day while I work with free Wi-Fi. The only downside is the cost: The entry fee and snack bar are a bit expensive, so I reserve this spot for a long day of work.
And there’s my signal to end this post — my children are tangled in a battle over a video game controller. Stay tuned for a blog post on how not to parent. In the meantime, what are the places around town that are preserving your sanity this summer?
Ella Hearrean of Stellar Communications is a Houston-based freelance editor and writer for business leaders, publishers, and other writers. Connect with her on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/ellaritchie.