My kids don't like summer camp. To be fair, they don't like school either, but I make them go to that. But I can't bring myself to do it in the summer. I like summer just the way it is. Three glorious months when I don't have to worry about lunch boxes and which day is gym and did you remember your sneakers. I don't have to pick out clothes for them, I don't have to rush, rush, rush to get out the door. It's a long relaxing period of time, filled with day trips to the beach, visits to family members we don't see that often, and long, lazy days of just.... being. Picking dandelions and learning to ride a bike and roller skate. Climbing Mt. Monadnock and Mt. Wachusett. Strawberry picking, hiking, swimming.
My kids don't particularly like a lot of structure. They like to wing it. They like to hang out at home, or to visit friends. They both begged to be able to stay home this summer, and I'm counting down the weeks to summer.
They won't be this age again. My oldest is nine, we're flirting ever closer to the years where she'd rather hang with her friends than me. My son is still at the gorgeous age where he adores me, and is happiest when he's at my side. And Julianna - my little love bug is two, is there anything cuter than a two year old who worships her older siblings? I need to take advantage of this time, I want to relish every single minute of their childhood.
So we're not doing camp this summer. We're going to go swimming in the ocean, we're going to visit the White Mountains, and explore the woods around our house. We're going to make nature journals, and take up bird watching. My oldest is planning on writing a book, my son is planning on trying to tame one of the squirrels outside. We're going to blow bubbles and take the bus (just for the fun of it). We're going to make weekly treks to the library, and we're going to visit and explore and sleep late and stay up even later. We're going to soak up every last bit of this summer, and I can't wait.