I Won’t Lie: I’m Sort of Missing School

I know: it’s been forever. I’ve written several posts that have been rejected right before I hit “publish” because I realized that they would annoy or embarrass my children. This was much easier when they were teensy. Ever since the kids have started school, I realize at the beginning of summer that summer is challenging. I am not one of those mothers who yearns for the cuddly, cozy infant-and-toddler days. I appreciate the space. This is especially true because I work from home, and losing that school time makes this more challenging. So here’s how the month of July has been:

Weeks 1 & 2: enormous vacation. And yes, I will post more about it, but I’d like to do it when I can also link over to my various review articles to give the basics. I’m hoping for later this week.

Week 3: no plans and a lot of recovery. I was laundering and writing review articles like a crazy person while my kids were watching too much tv.

Week 4: M was away at overnight soccer camp, J was mostly consumed with making me nuts in her own special J way. Mostly, she’s been bored, and with M away, lonely.  And this makes me crazy, because I would like her to be happy. In fact, I was thinking to myself that part of my problem is that I feel responsible for her happiness in the summertime in a way that (I don’t think) my parents ever did. Which was funny, because my psychic husband, Cute W, happened to send me a link to a TED Talk about this very issue.

Yeah, it’s a freakin’ high bar. At one point I made J a list of the many, many things that she could do with all of her free time this summer, and she seemed to like it, but then she set it aside and tried to go back to the tv before I wrangled her away from it. Sigh.

Now M’s returned, and even though the two of them were delightfully companions over vacation and they both missed each other, they’ve been bickering like crazy.

Basically, I’ve had altogether too much time with my beloved children. Yesterday, I drove off to Hannaford in a huff so that I could stockpile naan in our freezer because it makes me nuts to see my entirely privileged children fight over bread as if they were starving. In fact, if they were starving, they would probably be better at sharing. Or at least they would bicker more quietly. I also exited the car to walk home during the 5-minute wait outside of our local grocery store as Cute W picked up provisions. I need some space.

Luckily, I think next week will be better. M has a morning soccer camp with good friends, and I’m hoping that she’ll spend most afternoons continuing the fun with them. She is 13, and nothing is better than hanging out with her girlfriends. Meanwhile, I’ve found something to keep J happily occupied next week: Circus Theatricks Camp. She loves this–she’s done it at the Ciccotti Center for two years, and this is her first time at Sage Theatre Institute, but I’m just relieved, because I know it’s pure fun for her. I found out that there is still space at the camp, too, if anyone else is interested. They do an adorable show at the end of the week, too.

So I’m hoping that I will replenish my patience store next week and be a more chill mama for the following week, when we don’t have a dang thing scheduled. We’ll see how it goes.


  1. Colleen

    I think our parents didn’t worry about it because we were all always outside playing with neighbors! That’s all I remember doing. And yet this generation has so many 2-parent-working families that I know my neighborhood has been DEAD from 9-5 and very depressing. I was excited that my kids didn’t really want a bunch of camps because it’s a low cost summer. But if they are at each other, if I don’t want to be the source of entertainment or do a major outing I have to hit the pool. That was my very long way of saying can J come over the week she has nothing? :p

  2. Claire

    I totally agree, Colleen. Because there are so many dual-income families, most kids are in camps, so those who are home for the summer require more parental entertainment than we did a generation ago when there were plenty of neighborhood kids to play with. I love having the extra time with my son, and I enjoy the break from dealing with school, but the constant driving around in pursuit of social opportunities for my son is exhausting, and means I have to save my errands and cleaning for the weekends. That is one thing I won’t miss when school starts up again.

  3. I do wish that we had more kids just hanging around. . . there are fun kids in the neighborhood who are tucked away into daycare all day, then spend the weekends at lake houses, and we barely ever see them. It’s funny, though: when I was very little I was always playing with the neighborhood kids, but for late elementary/middle school, my house was much more isolated, but I still occupied myself for the most part.

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