We're heading into the middle of Summer and it's getting hot, hot, hot out there! The heat is on and there's no escaping it. And for those who are stuck staycation-ing, it can be a little challenging especially when the kids are home with you 24-7 and for the entire Summer. I can assure you, you'll lose your sanity pretty quick - guaranteed. But, before you lose your cool - I know how that is - do as I do. It will even save you some money. Though I can't guarantee your sanity remaining intact, you at least have some great options for your staycation challenge here besides going to your neighborhood pool or staying at home all day.
Here are places and ways to make your Summer creatively bearable and enjoyable with the rest of the family (that meant the kids of course) and saving you some money as well:
1. Mall - Think of the mall as not only for shopping anymore. If you have younger children, you can take advantage of their play area for non-stop fun. You can also take advantage of their free wifi if you must need to catch up on some work. Most play areas have table and chairs adjacent to them. If you've got older kids, you can go shop-hopping - though I can't guarantee you won't end up buying anything at all. Or you can chill at a Starbucks cafe or lounge at the mall's lounging area, preferably with your favorite coffee drink in hand. If not, then people-watch. Trust me, it can be fun! I'm watching you!
Four Malls worth visiting in Charlotte: Charlotte Malls
|North Lake Mall Fountain by main entrance / Photo: Yelp|
An here's an added fun if you're looking to get fit? Try mall walking. Simply take a couple of laps around the whole interior of the mall and that's it. Get the whole family to do it with you to make it more fun. Like I say, the family that walks together, gets fit together!
Not up for the mall? Try...
2. Shopping Centers - They're worth adding to your ensemble. Even if it's only for cooling down yourselves at an ice cream, smoothies or frozen yogurt shop, these shopping centers have more to offer. Get out there on Saturdays. They usually have free live music to entertain the whole family.
|Birkdale Village fountain/ Photo: City Beautiful 21|
Highly recommended Shopping Centers in Charlotte: Charlotte Shopping Centers
3. Bookstore - Summer reading is on and most bookstores have Summer reading program that offers rewards. Now, that's a plus to motivate your kids to read and at the same time, doubles as a great place to chill the heat away. You and your child/children can both get holed in there for hours and it's like heaven on earth. Except that you're surrounded by books and not angels. A bonus? Most of these bookstores have in-house cafe. A perk for when you just gotta have your coffee!
Mall and shopping centers with Bookstores in Charlotte:
- Carolina Place Mall - Barnes and Noble
- Birkdale Village - Barnes and Noble
- SouthPark Mall - Books-A-Million
- Rivergate Shopping Center - Books-A-Million
- North Lake Mall - LifeWay Christian Book Store
However, when mall-ing gets too "boring" for that easily-bored child of yours, simply hop on over to the theater near you.
4. Movie Theater - Did anyone say popcorn?! Oh yes please! Nothing beats being indoors and watching a movie with popcorn galore! And with Summer, most theaters offer perks that are FREE, dirt cheap or almost free to its young patrons and their budget-conscious parents.
The full list of Movie Theaters in Charlotte with Summer deals can be found here: Charlotte Movie Theaters.
5. Library - Other than the bookstore, your local library is a good alternative. I should know this since I've been perusing our local library since the start of Summer vacation. It doesn't cost me anything except my time and gas (for the car, not the one that comes out of me) but it keeps my bookworm happy and they have endless anime books to keep her distracted all Summer long. Best of all, I get to do some work. Free wifi and free aircondition? Divine!
Check your local library for their Summer reading program and events. Our local library got some cool events going on for the kids and we're so doing it.
6. Museums - You probably didn't know museums have Free Admission days, but they do. Now you know. And as you already know, FREE is always good when you have more than one kid to entertain the whole Summer.
Check the list of Museums in Charlotte with Free Admission Days or Always Free here: Charlotte Museums.
Now last but not the least...
7. Coffee Shops - This is for you Mom or Dad. You deserve it. Send the kids away to a friend for a playdate or to their grandparents even for a full day so you can recharge and catch up on some online work. As a blogger, I know that having my own uninterrupted space and time is very crucial to what I do. So, go ahead and make your escape to your favorite coffee shop. Free wifi and free air conditioning can't be beat. And all you need to do is spend a little money on a cup of coffee in exchange for hours of peace. I say that's a big, big win!
If you can't send the kids away somewhere and they need to go with you, no sweat. Go to Barnes and Noble.
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More Ways to make your Summer Awesome: