I am all about structured freedom these days, for myself and for the children. Menu planning and my grocery shopping system have totally changed my life, and more order in other areas has been very liberating. I will have lots to say in the coming weeks about the new way that we are structuring household chores, but in the meantime, what about a little structure for summer? I know that summer is the best time for my kids to have lots of free time, but I also want them to use that time pretty well, and stay out of my hair for some part of each day. Our main summer activity is neighborhood swim team, which just has one hour of practice a day. Two of my children have a teeny-tiny bit of school work that still has to be finished, one could use practice in a particular area, and another needs to write an essay for CCD. Over the years, I’ve learned that the simplest way to structure my summers, and still have plenty of freedom, is to give each child a list of 5 Things which they must do every day before they are free to choose their own adventures. Read more here, please.