Everyone (including me) has been talking about getting through the end of the summer without going insane, and counting down the days until the kids are back to school. I feel this way sometimes – but honestly it is fleeting. I am enjoying my laid-back summer mode. We are in a groove here at the beach where we have been staying for most of the summer. This lifestyle is so laid-back that even on our very worst day, everyone is still pretty happy.
It could be the daily ice creams from the ice cream man, or the sunshine and fresh air, or maybe because we are all tan (that always puts me in a good mood)….but everyone is friendly and pleasant here.
Every kid that rides by on their bike will say “Hi Michael!” “Hi Sam!” My kids say hello to everyone they see too…no matter who they are. Meanwhile, at home, if we walk into the libarary or park and my kids see a child that they know and say hello, there is a very good chance that said child will either not respond at all or hide behind his or her’s mother’s leg until they are forced to say hello. It’s annoying and weird and all too common.
When did children become rude and socially inept? Because by nature – children will play and interact and be friendly. Wouldn’t it be so wonderful if I could transfer this energy where children play harmoniously and don’t bully each other and act like whiney brats back to my hometown (specifically my bus-stop) for the fall?
Aside from the endless “Toasted Almonds” and my very dark skin-tone, a major contributing factor to our summer happiness is a little something called “beach camp.”
The kids go to camp everyday. This camp is a far cry from anything fancy that kids might be experiencing in other stuffy Connecticut towns. It is not horseback riding camp, or rock-climbing and ROPES course camp, or UCONN Huskies camp….it’s not hanging out at a camp in Martha’s Vineyard while the Obamas are in town.
It is old-school, make a potholder, play Wonderball, hang from the monkey bars by your ankles, camp….and in my eyes it is absolute perfection. Kids come and go each week from all over, and within minutes on Monday morning they are part of the camp. Anytime I go by when I am on my way to the beach or going for a run(do you see why I love camp?) – the kids are always running around, having a blast, engaged in whatever the activity is. There is no bullying, no tears, no drama.
Why can’t it be like this at home?
Last week was the last camp session and they ended the year with a huge party and passed out awards. Mind you - all summer long I saw people post on their facebook pages the awards that their kids got at camp. I kid you not – grown-ass adults would actually post something like this:
“So proud of Johnny! He got camper of the day for the second time!! He is so precious and such a perfect reflection of my perfect parenting!! Thanks Johnny for being the best little camper in the whole world!”
Alright – maybe I made up the last part….but definitely saw several posts about people’s children getting “Camper of the Day” and “Camper of the Week” (all people from my hometown of course.)
How about “Camper of the who gives a shit?”
What makes anyone think that we care about this eart-shattering news? What does it even mean? Did Johnny not have any time-outs at camp all day? Did he do a super good job sharing the beads during necklace making? Did he do really good rowing of his kayak? Did the horse he was riding do an awesome jump? Did he hold the door for the Obamas when they were leaving the book store?
Even if he did any of those things…guess what? NOBODY CARES.
This is why I love our beach camp. There is no pretense. There is no worry of hurt feelings if one kid gets an award that another kid might have wanted. Nobody worries that insecure creepy weird kids need a badge that says they are super awesome to bring home to show their mommy.
So that’s why – only at beach camp would they announce Sam’s name and call him up to award him this:
Nobody felt slighted – everyone cheered and laughed.
And then they really outdid themselves and called up Michael to award him this:
And instead of crying because his brother was the “cutest” and he wasn’t – he fist-pumped and laughed like a nice Italian boy.
I am going to cherish and savor these last days of freedom and joy before heading back to the wretched bus stop and the land of whining children.
NOW THAT MY KIDS BOTH GOT AN AWARD -NOW I NEED ONE! PLEASE VOTE FOR ME SO I CAN BE ONE OF THE TOP MOMMY BLOGS!! ONE CLICK ON THE BANNER BELOW IS A VOTE FOR LADY GOO GOO GAGA!!!
Linking to POUR YOUR HEART OUT WITH SHELL!!