Posts Tagged "camp"

Helping Kids Pack for Camp

Dear Kid,

Oh, the joy of helping children pack for camp.

Actually, I really enjoy spending time with you guys. And I’m fine with helping you choose and organize the 7 thousand things you will need to successfully negotiate the next two months.

The headache from writing your name on everything in permanent markers, not so much.

Time discussing what you should take with you? Fabulous. The pain behind me eyes when Pi wails, “Can you just make the decision for me? No, not THAT!”

Helping Kids Pack for Camp. DearKidLoveMom.comThe time we spend distracted and chatting about nothing at all? Wonderful. Trying to figure out how to get the silver permanent marker to write on your black socks? Sigh.

Discussing the number of pairs of underwear one needs? I have absolutely no words. Mostly because I can’t count that high.

Overall, enjoyable time well spent.

You guys are well past the age where I can do all the packing for you. And well past the age where I read the list and you fetch the clothes and it goes just that smoothly (I wonder if it ever really was that smooth or if I’m employing selective memory). You’re also well past the age where your clothes are small enough to fit easily into one large bag. And you have diverse interests which come with specialized gear.

Amazingly, we fit everything in one car. Including people.

Have a wonderful summer, kiddo. Keep us posted.

Love, Mom

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Countdown to College–7 Days | Sending You to College Might Not Be as Easy as I Thought

good bye might not be as easy as i thoughtDear Kid,

Today I need to start with a story. I know it’s a story you’ve heard before. Hang with me (and please don’t roll your eyes).

At your elementary school, each class put on a show every year. When you were in second grade, you sang your first solo. I sat in the audience next to Dad with Pi on my lap and tears rolling down my cheeks as you sang. I cried silently because Pi was too young for me to want to try to explain to her why I was crying.

A few weeks later, she was in her first dance recital. Each time she performed, I cried. Somewhat less silently.

That summer was your first adventure at sleep away camp. I called Grandma as I was driving home after dropping you off. “How are you doing?” she asked in a voice that was clearly trying to figure out how to put me back together over several state lines. “I’m fine,” I answered, “Apparently, I can’t watch my children on stage without completely losing it, but leaving them with complete strangers—not a problem.”

True story. But you knew that.

And it has been like that ever since. Sending you out of state or out of the country has not been traumatic for me. I miss you, but I don’t cry. On the other hand, I have learned to wear waterproof mascara whenever you’re going to be singing.

I thought sending you to college was going to fall into the same “sending you off” category. But I am slowly coming to the realization that I might have been mistaken in that assumption.

When I left you with Grandma and Grandpa, I knew you were ready. I left you in the care of my parents, and I knew I’d see you in a few days.

When I sent you off to visit friends out of state, I knew you were ready to go. I put you into the care of a family I trusted, and I knew you’d come back to me at the end of the weekend.

When I sent you off to camp, I knew you were ready to go. I put you into the care of wonderful people, and I knew you’d come back to me in a few weeks.

When I sent you off to travel internationally, I knew you were ready to go. I put you into the care of a program I trusted, and I knew you’d come back to me in a month or two.

countdown to college move inNow I’m sending you off to college. I know you’re ready to go. I know I’m putting you into the care of one of the best people I know—you. But this time I’m a little less sure I’m ready to let go.

Maybe it’s that this is the start of the process of you not coming home to me. Maybe it’s that I know this will shape and change you in ways I can’t even begin to imagine.

Maybe it’s that this is the start of saying good-bye in a bigger way. Of watching you make bigger and more independent decisions. Which is a good thing. Mostly.

I miss that little boy who came home from camp full of stories and hugs. But I can’t wait to see the You you will become.

In the meantime, I’m trying to decide if I need waterproof mascara to take you to college move-in…

Love, Mom

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Lord Love a Duck and Other Ducky Facts

Lord love a duck mallardDear Kid,

It has been a delight having Pi back from camp. In between 17 hour stretches of sleeping, we’re hearing all about her adventures.

My favorite story (so far):

One evening, all the girls were on their beds and one of the counselors was talking. She said, “Lord!” and Pi immediately replied, “love a duck!” All her bunkmates turned to look at her like she’d grown another head. Thoroughly confused, Pi said, “Wait, don’t your mother’s all say ‘Lord love a duck’?” She truly thought all moms say that on a regular basis. It was quite an eye opener for her to find out it was just her own wacky mom who is partial to the phrase.

A group of ducks is called a badelynge, bunch, brace, flock, paddling, raft, or team. Unless you’re in Boston, in which case it’s called Make Way for Ducklings. Or if you’re in a hotel, in which case it’s called a Peabody of ducks.

If the ducks are made of rubber, it’s called a fundraiser. Or a wonderful song from Sesame Street (link provided for your viewing pleasure).

Baby ducks can walk and leave the nest just a few hours after hatching which does odd things to duck property values.

Very few ducks actually quack (true) but they make all sorts of other noises. Males are generally silent, but when they do talk it is often with a wet lisp.

Rubber duck fundraiserA quack is also a term for a fraud, generally of the medical variety. For example, a self-styled “doctor” whose patients generally have a better chance of survival if they don’t get treatment. Also, someone who sells ridiculous lotions and potions with even more ridiculous claims (love potions produced without the help of a magic wand and so forth).

The term quack in this context is from the Dutch “quacksalver”, literally meaning “hawker of salve.”

In the Middle Ages the word quack meant “shouting”. The quacksalvers sold their wares on the market shouting in a loud voice.


Love, Mom

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