Summer fun is family fun

Local families tell their best summer stories

It's 6pm and the end of another hot summer day. Post dinner is my favorite time when things are winding down and the heat of the afternoon has past. My kids are too worn-out to take another dip in the pool and are sitting on the deck, eating ice cream. They are sun-kissed and happy. Everything is right with the world.

Summer is full of memories

Many people measure the passage of time with each September, and the beginning of each new school year. Since I was a little girl, I've had an affinity for summer and the misty memories made there. Celebrations,  barbeques and family get-togethers, are some of the wonderful times stored in the very basic part of our memories of childhood that make us who we are.

Our family has spent so much time outdoors looking for frogs and fireflies late into the evenings. Hotdogs and sleeping bags under the stars are stories embedded deep in the hearts of my family.

Last summer, my husband and I put in a pool and deck. It was a long-awaited dream for me because I grew up with one in my yard. My husband teased that I would enjoy it more than the kids. And, I have to admit, it brought back a lot of memories of my parents and brother, old friends and summers gone by. 

4 tips for summer fun without breaking the bank

Between the pool and play dates at the lakes or parks with buddies, these last few summers have flown too quickly. My children are growing like the wildflowers we pass as we drive along the country roads. Just when did they get so tall? Was it the magic of the summer wind that bleached their hair and changed them so?

Summer welcomes milestone moments

Just recently, my middle son realized his feet could touch the bottom of the pool, a rite of summer passage I remember all too well. It seems he grew a whole foot from last year. My baby boy now has loose teeth and my oldest son has become a man. I used to go to Long Beach Island as a child every summer and now I really enjoy taking my children there. This year we decided to create new memories in Hawaii.

8 ideas for family fun

Local families share their love for summer

"Each year our family takes a special vacation together,” says Tori Labrenz, a mother of three from Montgomery. “My twins are getting older and I know one day they may not want to travel as a family, so we make it a point to create our special memories now while they are still young. We make sure to take a lot of pictures.”

"Every first week of June, we make our list of all the things we want to do over the summer,” says Kathy D'Amato, a mother of two from New Windsor. “The first thing is always a trip to Lawrence Farm for strawberries and peas.” D’Amato says the trip to the farm is her family’s official kick-off to summer.  "We always have a new goal in mind. Last year we tried to learn to ride bikes. This year we are going to learn to swim in our new pool," says D’Amato. 

Who doesn't love ice cream. Find 11 stops that offer tasty treats!!!

Make time for the family

Kids will remember the smallest things forever and summer is a great opportunity to spend time with them.