He’s Doing His Job…And I’m Doing Mine

Aug 22, 2014 by

I thought that after the toddler stages, parenting would get easier – less “hands-on.” And it did…for awhile.  But parenting an adolescent is tough work. Although I don’t have to remind him not to run in a parking lot, I still need to be aware of what’s happening in his world and be there to listen, offer suggestions (not always solutions), and empathize.

This summer we had our share of growing pains.  We’re working on drawing that fine line between nagging and reminding. To which I usually receive an exasperated, “I know!!” (Enter logic: If you knew, why didn’t you do it?). We bicker more. He talks back.  He has an attitude.  It’s not even conscious. It’s almost like there’s an internal energy that’s pushing back – rebelling.  I remind him that it’s not acceptable to speak to me disrespectfully.  He apologizes.

Hooray for Sleep Away Camp!!

Jul 25, 2014 by

2014-07-20 13.20.32He’s baaaack! We dropped my son off at sleep away camp last Sunday.  This is his second year at this camp and despite a few butterflies on Saturday night, he was completely thrilled to be there.  As we drove up the mountain road that leads to the camp, he pointed out every landmark that he remembered from last year – the pizza joint that they stopped at on the way home from an outing, the gas station where we filled up before heading home last year, the carved wooden totem pole, the scenic outlook…he remembered it all.

When we arrived I was amazed at the ease in which he settled in, showing us around the campus with so much pride and authority and affably introducing himself to his counselor and bunk mates.  The first year, I felt some trepidation in leaving my “baby” behind – this year, none whatsoever. This was his place, he was 100% comfortable being there and he was ready to soak up every moment.  After a quick sandwich at the mess hall, he was ready for us to go – so we did.

Middle School Survival Skills My Son Is Learning At Camp

Jul 11, 2014 by

diarywimpy kid

We’re a few weeks into the summer and my son has already learned a few important things at camp.  No, he hasn’t tied any sailing knots, or learned how to carve a bear out of a block of wood, but he is learning to navigate the sometimes treacherous waters of middle school a few months early.  The town-run camp that he’s attending is aimed at kids entering grade six through grade eight – so he’s being exposed to lots of new  things and older kids and it’s been somewhat eye-opening for him.  Here’s what he’s learned so far:

1. Keep track of your belongings. Campers are required to bring a backpack with their swimming gear, water bottle, and a book for mandatory reading time.  On the first day of camp, he put his knapsack down “somewhere” while he had lunch and, when he retrieved his belongings, he found that his book was missing.

My 11th Summer Vs. My Son’s

Jun 27, 2014 by

So it’s the first official week of summer and the internet is jammed up with statistics promoting the benefits of giving kids a free-range summer (as opposed to structured camp sessions – another guilt trip for working parents) and nostalgic remembrances of lazy 70’s summer days filled with catching frogs in the creek and pick-up baseball games.

I’m a child of the 70’s…and despite my advanced age, I remember those summers well – and I don’t remember them quite the same way.  The first week of freedom was GREAT! But by the end of the 3rd week we were hot, bored, and everyone was fighting.  Not exactly the idyllic stuff of these articles.

Take a Hike

Jun 24, 2014 by

I’ve always loved being in the woods. My dad likes to say that’s because he started bringing me on hikes when I was a little baby, and he continued to do so through adulthood. I feel alive in the woods. I feel comfortable in the woods. I feel peaceful in the woods. My favorite way to exercise is by hitting the trails for a trail run. My husband feels the same way.

We started hiking with our daughter when she was a baby too. We bought one of those hiking backpacks and we’d set her in it and head off. Talk about super cute! To my surprise, the movement of the backpack would actually sway her to sleep.

Recently we went on our first family hike without the backpack. And it.was.awesome.

As we approached the entrance to the trail she kept saying “I LOVE hiking!”

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