Summer is in full swing. I really enjoy the fact that our schedule is much less structured, although I like the fact that we have some events planned on a daily basis, even if it’s just camp drop-off for Sonja. It gets us breakfasted and out of the house for at least part of the morning each day. But my days are not filled with wiling away…for one thing, that boy of mine is around. He wasn’t interested in joining a camp this year and I’m on the fence whether I should look for something to put him in, even if it’s just an hourly lesson each day.

Tennis lessons was on the books for him, but his coach isn’t available regularly, so that didn’t work out. He wants to play competitive soccer but we’re in competitive hockey for 10 months out of the year so that wasn’t appealing to me or his dad. And to continue with hockey over the summer….no. As much as I like hockey, I for one need a break from the rink.

It is surprisingly difficult to find a specific activity for a kid like Ben that is affordable, conveniently located, and age appropriate. He mentioned he likes sculpting but the only courses I can find, whether they are weekly classes or summer camps, are a combination of art mediums. He’d have to do some painting, some sculpting, some drawing, and all he wants to do is sculpt. So…what to do? My idea was to maybe put him in a half day camp, so that it wouldn’t be too much for him, but for his age group only full-day camps are available. If there is a sculpting class he could take someplace in Toronto, the location was too far away and would add stress and cost too much in gas, so we didn’t pursue that avenue, either.

He wants to play Minecraft. And NHL 14 on the Xbox. Or watch hockey videos on youtube. All day long. He’s be perfectly happy with that kind of a summer. Parenting the pre-teen boy during summer vacation has been an interesting journey so far, is what I’m saying.


Other things that are happening and keeping me occupied:

Blueprints for the house renovation are due at the end of July. We decided to forgo the second story addition and instead redesign the bungalow’s interior to increase functionality. Maybe add a small addition in the back. They’re going to come up with a few different options for us to consider and we’ll go from there.

I need to find more steady work. I feel less than motivated to pursue something now since I have to be around for the non-camp kid, but when someone offers me proofreading or editing, I take it. It’s not much income but it pays for food. And ice cream.

The hockey tournament we did last weekend was a fantastic, amazing success and I am somewhat surprised I feel this way. I wasn’t thrilled about summer hockey but the resort we stayed at had great family-oriented amenities and I felt like it was somewhat of a vacation for me. Ben was thrilled with the games he played, won awards, and although his final goal was counted as a no-goal (the refs didn’t see it go in, even though we all did) he managed to focus on the entire tourney and not just on that final disappointment. Well, most of the time. There have been some processing meltdowns but we’re working on it…

And speaking of hockey, the schedules for September to December are starting to come in. I spend at least an hour a week, if not more, updating the September calendar with all the new practice times, games, and tournaments.

By August, DH will be off for a month-long vacation. This is a relative term….he will have to spend some of the time, probably later in August, to prepare for the fall courses he will have to teach. But we have some plans to leave the house and go places, visit some family at their cottages or camp sites, do some local touring. Ben expressed interest in exploring some caves and we have a few in the not too far off places between here and the Ottawa valley…I also hope to spend some more time in hotels so I don’t have to do as much maintenance or cooking. Stay-at-home moms do this so often and so regularly, it doesn’t really feel like a break unless I don’t have to do, or delegate, jobs like washing dishes or prepping food.

I’m also trying to get Ben more involved in housework. This has been about as challenging as it sounds. He’s always had to help with certain chores, but now that he’s around a lot more I don’t see why I should have to do all the dishes all the time, especially since the dishwasher broke. (Also, the fridge broke. Why can’t these appliances wait until the reno is in full swing to break down? WHY?) I’m a little concerned with his lackluster contribution and the poorly executed jobs. I hate being the bad guy here but really, the time has come to shape up. Yesterday for example, I made him refold all the towels. He wasn’t impressed.

And since we’re on the topic of kids…the two siblings have started a phase I’m not too happy to be entering. The relentless teasing, especially if one is grumpy or pissed off about something, is making me mental. I try to leave it, ignore it, but he gets physical and then she bites, so that requires intervention. The short-term solution has been to go for a bike ride or swim. They burn off all that excess energy they use in fighting or teasing with each other, but frankly, I’m not always up for such an energy-burning activity, and they’re too young to be sent out on bikes alone. I realize that teasing is part of the sibling equation but….well, wine helps.


Speaking of wine. I need to drop about 10 pounds. I’m not fat, I don’t consider myself fat, but I have felt some fluctuations in my weight over the past few years, and this past winter and into summer has been a hormonally and emotionally challenging time for me. Wine, and snacks that go well with wine (cheese… yum!), they add to the waist line, and I’m not comfortable in my skin. So, instead of dropping wine all together, I decided to go back to my idea of wine only on weekends (I tried that and failed during the school week, mostly because of homework), and increased my consumption of lemon water. With the lack of wine comes a lack of snacking and cheese, so I’m hoping to feel better sooner rather than later.

And that takes us to the end of my ramble. My mom is taking Ben and I to Costco today, a place I do not own a membership for but don’t mind frequenting once or twice a year just to stock up on a few items, and it’ll be our event for the day.

Now, I must go check email to see if more hockey schedules have arrived…



One thought on “

  1. Man, I could have written this post. SO much I identify with! Our oldest son is just like yours – sounds like it’s the age. He doesn’t want to do much, but can’t just sit around playing video games all day, so it’s a constant push-pull of trying to get him out of the house. He thinks he’s too old for camps and things but too young to just go off on his own (and most of his friends are in camps, anyway, because their parents work). And plus: THE BICKERING. Oh my heavens – I don’t remember it ever being so bad. Maybe it was the Super Moon? Or the dawn of preteen behaviour? I don’t know, but their favourite pasttime seems to be pestering their siblings until someone cries (known as “winning the bickering game”). GAH. We are, actually, having a pretty nice summer and it’s always, always better than school time and winter time, but just a WEE BIT less bickering would be nice, no?

    And also: chores, YES. My oldest is 11 now and we are starting to worry about him still living at home at age 30 while I continue to cook and clean around his lumpy butt on our couch. So we’re also trying to drag him, kicking and screaming, into helping out a bit more, and learning some basic feed-yourself clean-yourself life skills. It’s worse than toilet training, so help me.

    And ALSO: hotel stays. YES. We are planning a little trip at the end of August and I (in theory) will not be cooking for THREE WHOLE DAYS and it may be the most heavenly time of my past 10 years. I cannot wait!

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