What Moms (And Kids) Want To Do — And Not Do — This Summer 

What Moms (And Kids) Want To Do — And Not Do — This Summer 

Happy Asian toddler girl with sunglasses smiling joyfully and enjoying family bonding time with mother having fun in the swimming pool in summer
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As I was driving down the road this morning, there was a discussion on the radio about how moms should take a kid-free vacation every year. I think we can all agree that after this year, we need it more than ever.

This got me thinking about vacations and how last year at this time, when things were so dark, I swore I was going to take my kids to the ocean for a long weekend or week-long vacation this summer.

Well, it’s officially this summer and because things have been so unsettled I have made zero plans — and I’m asking myself if it’s even safe for us to travel yet.

However, my three teenagers have different plans. As in, they don’t want to spend any more time with me than they have to since for over a year they have been learning from home while I was working from home and we hardly went anywhere. 

My family isn’t alone. Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts recently took a survey of 800 mothers with kids ages 6-12 and found kids wanted some breathing room. 

Almost 75% of moms said they wanted to have a family vacation with the whole family despite the past year we’ve had with all the togetherness, as long as it was safe. But the kids have something else in mind: Only half of those surveyed said they’d like to spend time with their parents. 

As far as they are concerned, car rides together are a horrible idea and they’d rather hit the amusement park, swimming pool, or water park. 

So, what kind of vacations are the moms interested in? 90% of them were up for a camping trip, as they feel it’s a great family bonding experience and it’s something safe the whole family can do together.

I am not a camper at all and will take a hotel over tenting any day. I’m not the only one: staying in a hotel, going to the movies, eating out, and visiting friends and family were rated among the other top things moms and kids wanted to do this summer. 

Scary Mommy asked their audience about potential summer plans and here’s what they had to say.

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Katie S., mother of two said, “My annual Momcation will be modified but will happen.”

Katie C. says, “We are driving to see my mom in NJ. We can be together within CDC guidelines since my kids are the only unvaccinated people, and they are all from one household.”

Ashley A. Says she will be staying home as she isn’t quite ready to do any traveling, while Whiten F. says going to the beach a lot is fine with her family.

But what is safe to do during the summer of 2021 and what isn’t?

Dr. Tara Narula spoke with CBS about having a safe, healthy summer and said the first thing families need to do is take note of  your “level of risk tolerance or aversion.” 

Are you or your kids at high risk for getting COVID-19? Are you vaccinated?

Since we know contracting COVID increases indoors without distancing, Dr. Narula says outdoor activities with small groups while social distancing are fine for kids and adults, even if they aren’t vaccinated. 

Water parks like Six Flags are also a safe option as they are taking the necessary precautions like enforcing people to wear masks, taking temperatures at the door, and sanitizing every fifteen minutes. 

As far as travel goes, Narula says road trips in a car are safest. She also mentions how, as parents, we need to talk to our kids about this summer and what they’d like to do. They’ve been through a lot and chances are they are feeling anxious and isolated.

Six experts talked with Good Morning America about the safety of traveling this summer. They all agreed that if you are vaccinated, and wear a mask, you are safe to travel by plane.

Regardless of where you are going, CBS recommends you look into the area’s policies and see how many precautions they are taking, as each state has different guidelines. 

CBS News chief medical correspondent Dr. Jon LaPook said we all must use our common sense.  “Figure out what the risk is in certain areas,” he says. “”The potential Achilles heel of the CDC guidelines is, you’re in an indoor setting, the ventilation isn’t great, it’s crowded, and there are some people there who are not wearing masks. Now, if that person is not wearing a mask, potentially they could be infected, not vaccinated, and a potential danger to infect other people. So, in that setting – I think especially if you’re immunocompromised, if you’re at increased risk – you should either try to stay away from those settings, or get the best possible masks you can.”

It’s summertime, and we all want to get out there and make up for some lost time. Outdoor activities like the pool, park, or zoo while social distancing sounds are safe bets and great ways for the family to spend time together (whether they still want to or not).