Thursday, June 18, 2009

First Day of Vacation!

It is the day every mom can't wait for. The first day of summer vacation! Freedom. No having to get 3 kids dressed in the morning. No lunches hastily made before we head out the door. Nothingness. Beautiful Nothingness. A false sense that I am in control. I can choose my daily activities.

But can I? But do I?

First of all, I seem to recollect that this wonderful, beautiful sense of wonder, freedom and joy lasts about a week. Then I find myself contemplating why I thought this was something to be anticipated. Now I wish they'd go back to the routine of school!

I'm kidding. Or maybe I am. Not sure. Ask me in a week. As for right now, I'm happy to have not constraints. My kids are behaving quite well at the moment and its a beautiful, sunny day.

Today I have no plans. This is unusual for me. Its the first day of vacation! A time to be celebrated. A time for something special, but instead I'm cleaning house and my kids are outside in the yard with A, their neighbor friend I blogged about a few days ago. (Can You See It?) My kids are having a great time. Possibly a better time than any other "special" place I would have taken them. (for some reason "special" places are all places most moms really don't like, in example, the dreaded Chuck E. Cheese)

It is a good reminder to me that my kids need unstructured playtime. I am a planner. I can be spontaneous but I prefer things on a calendar, probably because if its not on the calendar, it won't get accomplished.

So, I tend to have something planned out nearly every day of the week! Really! Its all good and wonderful stuff: Swim team practice, book clubs that meet at the park or a friends house, swimming at a friends house, a weekly trip to an amusement park, etc. All great stuff. Stuff other kids would be thrilled to do, right?

My kids are thrilled to do stuff. But they seem to really appreciate the simple things like having a neighbor friend come over. Their highlight of the day so far? Laying out a picnic tablecloth and picnicking with their friend on the grass, sharing their sandwiches, juice, cheese, carrrots and goldfish crackers. (yes; it was a predominantly orange meal; I need to go buy more fruit)

How simple. A backyard picnic. My 9 year old hugged me, told me I was the best mommy in the world. For making him a sandwich he could eat outside with a friend!

When I was a little girl, (or gurl as my little K says) I thought it was the greatest thing to go to Marine World. I thought it was so far away and such a treat to go. I loved it. My kids have season passes to a local amusement park, and we've been going for over 5 years, and now they groan. They'd prefer a backyard picnic. I plan all this "stuff" trying to be a great mom, no boring summers for my kids, and yet I think they need the unstructured. Perhaps boring and unstructured is better.

Its definitely cheaper.


  1. I must agree, unstructured time with a neighbor is "the Best". I like the "orange picnic", I may borrow that idea over here. I miss the neighborhood time as well. I guess we need to find more kids the age of S around here...School will help! Enjoy and thanks for the read!

  2. Thanks Maxine! Love hearing your little margo stories as well.

    :-) Funny how we started blogging at the same time without even knowing it.