School is out as of last Friday, and the summer vacation stretches before us. As I listen to my children argue in the next room, one thing comes to mind:
It's going to be a very, very long summer.
Normally I am working several days a week, which gives me a bit of a break and gives my kids a chance to develop a little bit of independence. As the house has always been standing when I got home and both kids were unscathed, I assume everything went well. I even suspect they get along better when I am not there to play referee.
This summer, however, I am facing the prospect of being home all of the time. It has only been four days since school ended and my patience is already being tested.
But all is not lost. Sean will be attending scout camp and Shannon taking an astronomy class at Michigan Tech University, both during the last week of July. We also have two long weekends planned, one with my family in Pennsylvania to attend my sister's wedding and another at a local campground for Cliff's family reunion.
Sean is also playing on a summer baseball league, and Shannon will likely be attending a weekly cheer camp later in the summer. I am also planning to expand their list of daily chores, which will go a long way in alleviating boredom and will be expanded even further if I get any complaints.
And I am researching inexpensive options to keep them off the sofa and away from the television, computer and video games. For some reason, the more time they spend in front of media, the more cranky they seem to be with each other. Outings to local beaches, free classes put on by a local nature center, trips to the library and free concerts and movies in our local parks should help. Also, we are lucky enough to have a drive-in movie theater, minature golf course, and other cheap forms of entertainment at our disposal.
Hopefully, these strategies will keep some semblance of peace and order in our house. If it doesn't, perhaps I can find a summer camps for mothers about to lose their marbles to send myself to for a week.