Busy homeschool dads don't have to wait until the annual summer family vacation to have fun with their children. Every day can be filled with laughter and exciting adventures with these inexpensive, easy-to-do summertime activities that your children will love doing with you!

Make a wave " Grab your trunks and a towel and head for the water to cool off on a hot summer's day. Whether it's the family wading pool, the city swimming facilities, or a local lake or pond, splash away and enjoy the good, clean fun of playing in the water.

Build a family fire
" Roast hotdogs and marshmallows in a outdoor fire pit and capture the heart of your child with a silly story from your childhood. You can even start a story and let each child add the next sentence or paragraph. You'll be tickled by your children's creativity and laughter by the time you reach the end.

Read the classics " Pick an exciting adventure book, such as Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne, and read a chapter each night before bed. The bonds that form while reading good literature with your children will last a lifetime.

Sleep under the stars " Pitch a tent outside or just roll out the sleeping bags and blankets on a warm summer night. Add a study of the night time sky and help your child locate the big dipper, the northern star, and other constellations. Introduce your child to the craters on the moon with an ordinary pair of binoculars. You may even want to add more fun by catching lightning bugs in a jar for a night light.

Use your tools " Put your carpentry skills to work and help your child create a bird feeder for the back yard or a new shelf for their room. Children love to work on home furnishing projects and will treasure their masterpiece once it's completed.

Create a collection " Join forces with your child to collect and preserve his favorite things in an attractive display. Whether its coins, stamps, seashells, or some other item of interest, a child's esteem will increase as you show an interest in his hobbies.

Enjoy a workout " Shut off the TV and video games and let your child pick his favorite activity to enjoy some healthy exercise. Walk or bike the city trail; play a game of soccer, baseball, volleyball, or tennis; or simply have fun at the city park on the swings and teeter-totter.

Paint a picture " Find the sidewalk chalk and create a mural on your driveway with your children. Raining outside? Draw and paint indoors using the I Can Draw Elementary Art Books or Art Ideas from Alpha Omega Publications® (AOP).

Study a bug " Go on a great hunt with your children for spiders, ants, and other insects. Armed with baby food jars and lids, you should find abundant varieties during hot summer days. Check out library books for additional informative facts as you observe these creatures with your children. You can even enjoy watching the miracle of a butterfly's metamorphosis with AOP's best-selling Live Butterfly Garden® kit.

Set an ambush " This game is just a good old-fashioned water fight on a hot summer day. Each team (kids against the adults is the most fun) attempt to soak the other using water balloons, squirt bottles, buckets, or anything else that will hold water. Make sure you set boundaries outside and other limits before you start so that no one gets hurt " only wet!

After working 10 or more hours a day and coming home to a list of honey-do chores, it's easy to forget the joys of playing with your children. Don't let the busyness of your day steal the wonderful moments and memories waiting to be made with your family. Let the Lord lead and watch as the family fun is rekindled in your home tonight!