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Summer Vacation 2019 – Day 1

The kids are home. All day. Too young to throw outside for the day. Too old to give random art activities.

Summer school…is in session.

First, get up early and get work done. Let them sleep, the sleep of angels. Until 10 am when I realize, getting off a phone call, that the lazy little bastards are still asleep!

Upstairs. Turn on lights. Open curtains. Start beating small butts with stuffed animals.
“OUT lazy children! Shoo!” teeth brushed, breakfast “sort of” eaten, the girl child out the door to play with friends and a promise of home by noon. The boy child at my shoulder.

“Whatcha doin.”

“This is what I do while you’re at school, buddy.”

“It’s summer. Don’t you get summer off?”

I start to weep. Not openly, but inside where I realize that no, I’m a grown-up and I don’t get summers off.

“Want to go outside and play?”


“What will you do if I pick you up and toss you outside?”

“Beat on the door until you’re annoyed and you let me back in.”

At this moment the phone rings. I realize that I could outlast his attention span at door knocking, but clients might be wondering why a small child was beating on a door and demanding something in a tiny voice. Rather than have the police show up, I decide that it is, in fact summer, and he should be allowed to have a few hours of screen time.

“Until 12, when your sister is back. Lunch then an hour of work!”

At 12:15 I look up from what I’m working on to realize that girl child is not back yet. I round up boy child and toss him outside with the mission to bring back girl child. If he does, great. If not, he got time outside. 30 minutes later both reappear at my side.

“What?” demands girl child.

“Lunch. Work.” I mutter, trying to make 700 be 1500. It is stubbornly refusing and remains 700.

“I’m not hungry.”

“Either am I, but eat we must!” I’m notorious for working an 8 hour day straight and then realizing I have not eaten at all. It’s a train my children have picked up and we have to be practically forced to eat for our own survival.

What follows is the typical parent nightmare of feeding a child. Nothing is good, nothing sounds appetizing, nothing will sate the demons. It’s like having the worst combination of pregnant and woman in one setting – culinarily unsatisfyable. We finally settle on toast and “dippy egg” for girl child and chicken nuggets for boy child.

“What are you eating?” girl child asks.

“I’m not hungry,” I respond, getting eggs out of the refrigerator. Where’s the Pam?

Death stare.

“Tuna salad on toast.”

“I want tuna salad on toast!” she cries out. The egg is already cracked and in the pan. Of course.

Lunch dishes are cleared for laptops. Today is a dry run to make sure we have everything. Pencils? No? HOW DO WE NOT HAVE A SINGLE PENCIL IN THE HOUSE? Paper, no lined paper. Work books, check. Boy child? BOY CHILD? not…yet. Actually, please go ahead and start the math book.

We reconvene to discuss summer learning goals. Girl child will research New York for our New York trip, Bermuda for the Bermuda trip, and Germany for the trip in the fall. She will do presentations before each trip to inform the family. I silently curse. For her Massachusetts report – we learned the proper pronunciation of Dr. Seuss, what famous celebrities came from the state, and about several murder suicides, but no mention of anything like Boston, or Cape Cod where her grandfather lives and she visits frequently. Or the Revolution. She does know the Patriots play there, but hates them, so there was no mention on purpose.

Boy child will work on math and reading as related to Pokemon. I counted that as a win. Especially since he was already working on the math book. He figures if he gets through it as fast as possible I won’t have anything else for him to do.

Ha ha ha ha..

With one day a week spent in D.C. and another day at the city pool, the summer is now laid out and organized. What could possibly go wrong?