This post is brought to you by Outshine®

This post is for all the parents out there who long for the end of the school year and look forward to the summer break, and then two days later remember how challenging it is to balance work and home life over summer vacation. Can we talk about the realities of parenting + working over summer vacation?

As you know, I work at home, and in my case, the hard stuff essentially comes down to 3 things:


1) Our family schedule is inconsistent (to put it mildly) over the summer break, especially compared to the school year. So trying to schedule calls, and make meeting appointments becomes much trickier. The calendar looks open when I say yes to that Skype call, and then someone gets invited to the pool and we’re having to juggle the dropoff or pickup. The Skype call ends up getting pushed back 30 minutes, or maybe rescheduled altogether.

Even when the kids have a camp or class to attend, it’s not the same as school. It doesn’t last all summer. It’s usually not full day. And it doesn’t involve all the kids.


2) When my kids are on summer break, naturally they want me to be on summer break too. They can see me at home, and I look so accessible. So it’s no surprise when they see 90 degree weather forecasted and suggest a beach day.

Of course, I’m craving family time too, and I know I won’t be able to get much of it once they’re back in school. Which makes it tempting to delay work tasks, thinking: let’s go enjoy the day as a family and I’ll take care of work after the kids are in bed. It seems so sensible when I think it, but rarely works out in reality. Hah!


3) When the weather warms up, I lose much of my interest in the kitchen. Everyone is home, and everyone needs to eat, but it seems like no one wants to spend their time preparing food. It’s like my work time is extra-precious during the summer vacation. If the kids are occupied, I need to take advantage of the quiet house to concentrate on work tasks, because I can’t predict when the next disruption is going to happen.

That’s where Outshine comes in. Outshine Fruit Bars are the official work from home snack. Whether I’m need something refreshing while working on the next Alt Summit newsletter, or I need a fruity burst in-between conference calls with the site designer (did I tell you I’m working on a site redesign for Design Mom?), Outshine Fruit Bars are a fast, easy, delicious option to satisfy my cravings on busy summer days.


The very first ingredient in most Outshine Fruit Bars is either fruit or fruit juice, and if you worry about GMO ingredients, you should know they use zero in their Fruit Bars. Plus, continuing its mission to help everyone shine brighter from the inside out, Outshine has made improvements to eight of its most popular flavors — Grape, Strawberry, Pineapple, Mango, Peach, Pomegranate, Raspberry, and Tangerine. By improvements, I mean Outshine has added an average of 77% more real fruit or fruit juice and has reduced sugar by an average of 11%.

If your day brings meetings, and deadlines or you’re simply trying to balance work and family activities, Outshine wants you to live your life bright, and to snack brighter.


What about you, Friends? Am I the only one, or do you also find summer a particularly challenging time to try and balance work and family? Do any of you take advantage of sleepaway camps to help manage the summer schedule? They aren’t widely done in the West, but I can imagine their appeal. And how are you feeling at this point in the summer? Do you wish the summer break could last forever? Or have you had your fill of “I’m bored” complaints, now you’re counting down the days until school starts?


Photos by Amy Christie for Design Mom.