Now that we're midway through the summer, I'm looking back over what I envisioned, compared to what it has been. The weeks have been packed with camps and visits (us going, family coming), and we've only had one week of 'free time' which was then packed with a playdate almost every day, until Bunny got sick. Whew! So much for having a carefree summer of lounging around and relaxing!
It's a nice change of pace and there's good and bad to it. I love that the kids are getting to do some things they normally don't get to do at their camps(ice skating, cooking, robotics), spending time with lots of other kids, and I am finally getting a long stretch of the day ALONE! After being with them almost 24x7 most of the year, I'm really enjoying some quiet time. However, it comes with a LOT of chauffeuring them to different camps for drop-off and pick-up! The driving itself is exhausting! I'm spending up to 2 hours per day in the car, since they have had camps that are almost 30 minutes away and they attending separate camps due to their differing interests. It also comes with packing lunches and snacks (which is one of the things I DON'T miss about school), and then unpacking their stuff at the end of the day, and just filling up most of the day so there's very little free time left.
Today, they are in the same camp, in town, and I have a HUGE stretch of time to myself since I don't have multiple dropoff/pickup locations/times. I was so tempted to just take a day off of work and have a day to myself! Woo hoo!! But I eventually talked myself out of it, because 1) I couldn't figure out what I'd do for fun anyway 2) my to-do list was gigantic, between planning for VBS, random errands, and work stuff that I couldn't really *enjoy* a day off, although a day to get a lot of stuff done probably would have been productive, just not worth using up my vacation days 3) I use up too much of my paid time off during the year for co-ops, mid-day church activities, and trips.
Thankfully, it's quiet at work today, so hopefully I can still knock out most of my to-do list, while still logged on to work.
We've been slowly doing the World Geography reading over the summer, but it's mostly been me reading aloud to them and sampling foods from the various regions. They are reading maybe 1-2 books from the region each week, mostly short picture books, but even though they are older, I still think there is value to a well-done picture book.
So, sadly, there hasn't been much time for just "Summer Freedom". I'm certainly enjoying the freedom from lesson planning and teaching, and they are enjoying the break from formal schoolwork, but they haven't had time to just spend hours with unstructured playtime, or even a chance to get bored. I think when we are at the point where they can get bored, then that would be the point at which I can say, "This is what a carefree summer is all about!"