Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Summer Programs

Summer is definitely here. It's hot. It's humid. My house is even darker than normal as I try to keep out the hot sun and avoid installing the air conditioner as long as possible.

I was looking at the calendar yesterday as we prepared for our first official Summer library activity.

For someone who has successfully avoided the seasonal "What Are The Kids Registered For This Summer?" Mom-Chat Trap, I have somehow contrived an involved summer of activities.

You see, every year the kids have been in organized programming, I begin to dread the late Spring session conversations. Talk always seems to gravitate to what the kids are doing for the summer. I used to feel as though I had to register the kids for summer programming. That it was a necessary endeavour in order to have properly socialized kids who have had the experiences necessary for a normal childhood. Silly me.

I'm past that now. However, there are still the irksome conversations that imply that I'm lax in my parenting since I don't feel the need to register my kids for structured, daily summer programming. It's annoying. There is the implication that I can't afford to send the kids to these summer camps. It has been suggested to me that I make use of the Y Campership so the kids can experience the joys of day camp. That's assuming a lot. What is most bothersome is how the underlying issues of this programming is DAYCARE is totally skirted. YOU may need daycare for your children over the summer. I don't. Programming that runs from 8am to 5 pm, that offers early drop-off and late pick-up, a rest period and daily crafts in a program titled 'Learn Gymnastics' (for example) is daycare.

My kids don't need daycare. Kori wants to continue her swimming lessons over the summer. She is signed up for weekly lessons. A half hour, once a week, mid-morning time-slot. We decided against the 8am - 4pm Summer Adventure Camp with Daily Pool Time.

The kids are having leisurely mornings of tv and video games. We're listening to the Half-Blood Prince on audiobook while lying around the living room carpet. We're walking the dog and watching the new subdivision being built on our street. We're BBQing and trying to keep the house cool. Kori is sleeping late and Raiden is playing board games outside with a buddy.

The kids decided to look through the library calendar of events and sign up for a some of the programs that interested them. They want to do the Summer Reading Club because of the free book draws, the possibility of winning the jellybean draw and the ever-attractive pizza party.

Raiden chose to continue with his summer soccer activities. There's a game and a practice a week. He wants to swim this summer, but not do swimming lessons. So we'll take him to the weekly sponsored swim at the pool.

The summer programming I love the best is keeping our Fridays clear. Brian's off and we never know what the weather will bring. Sometimes fishing, sometimes visiting, sometimes a day trip, sometimes nothing.

So yes, the calendar looks full. It's hourly programs here and there that the kids have chosen for themselves. My job is to keep things running so we're able to make our various appointments. I'm happy with our Summer Programming. The kids are happy with their activities. It's a relaxed, yet organized, feeling around here lately. At this rate, I may even schedule myself in for some Summer Kayaking With My Dad.

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