Summer is my jam. I’m meant to live in places with temperatures that never dip below 75. I hate snow. I hate cold. I hate hail, wind, ice, sweaters, and especially pants. I like to be free in flowy dresses or loose tanks. I like being able to float in the water like the fluorescent buoy I am. My skin may not agree, but my heart says yes.
Some moms have plans, activities, crafts, scheduled outdoor play time, play dates, group play dates, day trips, camps. I don’t have those things. That’s mostly my fault, maybe my lack of disorganization and motivation, but I honestly don’t have the time. The kids might be home, and I might be home with them, but it doesn’t mean I am good enough, multi-task mastery enough to drop everything to dedicate to them. I’ll fully admit that my summer-enthusiast self fails in that arena, but that doesn’t mean we DON’T have activities. That doesn’t mean we do NOTHING every day all day. Our days are chocked FULL of fun!
I want to share with you how we spend our summer days as maybe an inspiration for those of you out there who may be bored, or looking for things for your kids to do. I know I’m always looking for ideas that don’t involve destroying my house with Pinterest fails, or spending a ton of money I don’t really have just to kill a few hours.
Outside of special trips & activities, here is what a typical summer day looks like around here:
6am: Kids wake up. Consider making shitloads of noise, but realize they’ve done this so many times and ruined so many sleeps that they aren’t allowed to leave their rooms in the morning until an adult comes and gets them. Quietly read or plays with toys instead.
7am: Breakfast! Weekdays get to choose between cereal, oatmeal, or waffles, and a variety of fruit. Complain about there not being enough selection.
8am: Inside play time. Find something stupid to argue over and end up getting sent to separate rooms.
10am: Creative morning snack time! As in, get creative with what we’ve got in the pantry because I’m not going to let my coffee get cold just to make you something when we have a perfectly decent selection of ready-to-eat stuff.
11am: Random chores that are apparently more painful to complete than being waterboarded.
12pm: Lunch! Get to pick a type of sandwich, or leftovers. Chooses to complain we’re not going out for lunch, instead.
1pm: Whine about already being hungry again.
1:15pm: Harass the animals
1:30pm: Act out what must be deleted scenes from The Hunger Games over the last granola bar
2pm: Impromptu trip to the park, because mom is going to snap if she’s stuck in this house any longer
2:30pm: Even with 45 other kids at the park, find a way to fight with each other over some weird version of hide & seek they’ve made up.
3pm: Impromptu reward trip to Starbucks! … for mom. For not snapping in public. Get the kids something small just to avoid hearing them complain.
4pm: 30-minute battle over Hot Wheels car found under chair
4:30pm: The “Can we sneak a snack upstairs without mom noticing?” game
5pm: Commence daily whining about being hungry and how long it is until dinner, even though dinner is only an hour away.
5:30pm: Harass the animals again
6pm: DINNER! You’d think they’d be happy. Nope. They have a competition to see who can find the more ridiculous thing to complain about
7pm: Family TV time. Aka Time to fight over what to watch time
7:45pm: Kiddie shower time. Spend 15 minutes fighting over who’s turn it is to wash their ass.
8pm: Bed time. Battle royale over tooth brushing until they each collapse into bed.
My love of the months closest to the sun is the one thing in my life that never changed, never faltered. I swore I’d never eat avocados, and now I put that shit on everything. Said I hated dresses and would never wear them unless I had to, and now half of my closet is full of breezy frocks. Insisted I would never have kids, and, well, now look at me. With those kids came the death of my Grease-level Summer Lovin’.
I never want to be one of those moms who does nothing but talk about how “it’s all fun and games until you have kids” but we’re less than two weeks into summer break and I already hate it. Summer is no longer my warm, loving friend. I don’t recognize her at all.
You might think I’m just being dramatic. Surely over 30 years of dedication to summer couldn’t possibly be ruined in less than 14 days, but if you don’t think that is a distinct possibility, you don’t have children.
Is it time for Back to School shopping yet?
When I sat down to write both my first book, and Kids Are Turds, what I wanted to do was to be so honest, so real, that the parents reading would sit back and say to themselves “Holy shit! That’s me!”
In fact, I wanted them to relate to it SO HARD that they then sat forward and said “Is this bitch watching me from outside my window?”
THAT is the level of real-ness I aim for, not just in writing, but in the memes I choose to share with all of you.
It’s not that we’re not ALWAYS real here, but we’re getting real with the parenting memes. Here are the most honest, “OMG THAT’S ME” memes on the internet right now. Enjoy!
More our speed
We’d all be filthy stinkin’ rich
I’ve also used it as a reward system for when the kids do extra chores, and as a way to get them to vacate the frickin’ room.
“Sorry kids, this isn’t appropriate, go play with your toys”
Yes, it actually works. It’s a miracle worker.
Now, with the school year over, Netflix has a new way of keeping the people in this house sane: Decompression.
There’s no summer school here, and no summer camp they’re interested in to send them to, so my boys — who honestly don’t really get along — spend most of their time with one another. We all know that spending that much time with anyone is likely to make you nuts, and make them the most annoying person in the world, even if you love them and typically enjoy their company. Think about that, and then imagine siblings, who even on a good day, can’t stand each other, being stuck together. At least when school is in session, they get enough time apart to at least make each other tolerable, but summers are very trying, especially this year when their sibling rivalry has been at an all-time high.
It’s only the beginning of summer, but I’ve found that the best way to get my kids to decompress from fighting all day long, if all the chores have been done (because I have absolutely been known to send them to clean if they don’t quit arguing over nonsense), is to divide and conquer. Typically, I don’t let either of them in my room without an adult, but the only two TVs in the house are in the living room, and my bedroom, so when they just need some alone time (don’t we all?) I’ll send one up to the bedroom to watch something they love and everyone else can’t stand.
Of course, I should have known, Parker started watching movies we all wanted to watch together (Secret Life of Pets & Trolls, to name a few) but it’s a small price to pay for relaxed minds, kids that get along, and days that don’t end in screaming matches. I’ll take it!
New on Netflix this summer!
On the last day of every school year, we have a tradition: GO GET ICE CREAM! It’s pretty simple. We’ve lived in the same area since the kids started going to elementary school, so we always go to the same ice cream shop on the corner.
This year, I decided to mix things up. WHY THE HELL NOT, RIGHT?
Since early dismissal had me all screwy (still mad about it) on the last three days, serving lunch when they shouldn’t have been, I told the boys if they just skipped lunch and didn’t eat, I’d take them out for a celebratory meal after school and THEN we’d get ice cream, too! Score, right? Nice mommy, right here. Above and beyond the call of parenthood! Celebrate small victories! Or… just celebrate to celebrate, because the end of the school year means 2.5 months of parental hell, YAY!
And what a perfect time to also teach my children something they can really perfect over the course of the summer. Someone has to teach while the teachers recoup for the summer, right? It’s my job, right? To enrich, enlighten, and keep them on track so they begin the school year in the fall with sharp minds ready to learn!
For lunch & ice cream, I decided to kill two birds with one stone. WAWA. My kids are obsessed with making their own sandwiches, so while it isn’t exactly a meal fit for celebrating, it’s something they love, and we can grab some cheap ice cream bars at the same place.
I pick them up, announce our Wawa trip to a chorus of “YAY!”s, and we’re on our way. All is right with the world as they punch in their orders (we all get paninis ’cause we’re fancy), pick out some tips, and they both grab a good old fashioned Choco Taco. Yeah, they still make those damn things!
My only qualm is that Wawa is way more expensive than I thought it’d be. $30 for three paninis, 2 choco tacos, and 2 bags of chips? This is highway robbery! I only fume for a few seconds about how we should have gone somewhere else before our sammies are ready and we’re back in the car and on our way home. I’ve learned a lesson for next time. Hey, everyone learns this summer!
Everything is PERFECT, we’re all happy, the smell of hot delicious over-priced paninis has filled the vehicle, and I attempt to get out of the parking lot. I’m stopped by basically a wall of cars. They just don’t stop. They keep going, and going, and going, and I’m confused until one of the kids yells “WHY IS THERE A LIMO?” and I come to the realization that this is a funeral procession. The longest funeral procession I’ve ever seen in my entire life. A king’s funeral procession. The entire damn city has come out for this thing, and they’re all driving down the only road I can exit this Wawa from. I can’t even go the other way, because I’m being blocked by a minivan. I can’t back out and try a different exit, because now there’s someone behind me. I’m stuck behind this stupid minivan with it’s stupid stick figure family stuck to the rear window until this 5,000 car long funeral procession has passed.
It takes a solid 10 minutes.
When I finally manage to get the hell out of the parking lot and pull onto the main road, I find myself stuck in more congestion because OF COURSE the funeral procession is headed the same way I am, and all trying to turn right onto a tiny dirt road with no stop sign or light to help the flow of traffic.
I’ve lived in this area my entire life. I know all the back roads, so the first thing I do is pull off the main road and onto a back road to get away from the traffic and get our food home so that we can feast and rejoice the fact that my children are going to cause 74 more wrinkles to appear on my face this summer. WHAT JOY!
Three miles from my house and I see blinking lights. Many blinking lights. It’s construction equipment, going 10 mph down a two lane road, and zero ability to pass.
It’s at this time I should mention that my car has no air-conditioning. It’s been about 30 minutes we’ve been stuck in the car with choco tacos.
To make a long story short, my kids drank their choco tacos, and when they go back to school calling the slow walking kids who block them in the hallways “Shitass Dickwhistles!”- you have me to thank. It’s all a part of their summer educational program! Road Rage 101.
They’re going to learn soooooo much this summer!
THREE days. THREE days until the end of the school year here. I figured… the school system has fucked with me enough, the teachers are almost free, we should be in the clear! They should be relieved, just ready to get it over with. Get out clean. Get out relatively unscathed. Just pop on a movie and give the kids some popcorn and ride these last few days out.
For me, it means I’m at the days of no more fuckery! No more minivan mafia trying to run me over, or judgy grandparents making condescending comments about how I look.
No more PTA meetings disguised as “concerts”. No more calls from the teacher telling me that my kid hasn’t turned in his homework for two damn weeks. No more waking up at 7 in the damn morning to drag my kids to school. No more picking them up in the afternoon when there are NO spots left, and some turd with a brand new car decided to take up the final 2 that remain.
Yes, it means 3 months of my kids bitching, whining, complaining, and fighting, and I probably won’t get to sleep in any later, but it’s at least a relief not to deal with school shenanigans.
The first red flag that these last three days were not going to go as swimmingly as I’d hoped should have been when I heard that they were half days. This means release at 11:30am. This means no lunch served, and crapping all over my day to stop and go and get them at an awkward time, only to come home and have to feed them both. I spent a lot of time bitching about this to pretty much everyone I know. What’s even the point of going? There’s zero time for learning, not that any learning gets done in the last week of school. There’s not really even enough time to sit down and let the kids zonk out to a movie. So WHY? What purpose do these half days serve other than to make the parents adjust their entire days around them? (and I’m sure there is a logical reason according to teachers and administration, but let’s not muddy my rant with logic!)
I don’t have a problem with the school system. I think they do a fine job for the most part, but I’m gonna bitch about shit that disrupts life for seemingly no reason. I’m gonna bitch a lot, because it makes me feel better, and makes me less likely to play bumper cars in the school parking lot. I’m gonna bitch as much as humanly possible… but I’m still gonna do it, because what choice do I have?
My whole day rearranged around pickup. I did a shorter workout, a faster shower, I drank my coffee while I put on my makeup and dry shampooed the fuck out of my hair. Pretty sure I drank some of that. I didn’t even get to watch some of my favorite Netflix shows while I write (brain food!) Instead, I sat in silence, trying to get a little work done before having to rush out the door.
Red flag #2 should have been when I got to school and didn’t see any of the other parents walking in like I usually do. I didn’t have to fight for a parking spot, or curse about the twat taking up two spaces. It was completely unsettling.
Red flag #3 should have been when I got to the lunch room and kids were eating lunch. When they shouldn’t have been eating lunch. And when a little boy said to me “Parker’s right in there!”
The only thing in this damn hallway other than me and random crotchfruit is a pile of peas and carrots I legitimately can’t tell whether have been thrown angrily or puked up.
After waiting for a few minutes and still seeing no other parents, I walk back toward the office, all while Googling what the hell time kids get out during half days. Wouldn’t you know it, I can’t find a single. damn. thing. Just that these 3 days are shortened. The hell?
If you ask me why all of these red flags didn’t add up to something being wrong, I have no idea other than to blame having to cram my entire day into 3.5 hours. It wasn’t until I walked into the office and ASKED what time dismissal was, and was told “It’s at 1:20” that it finally clicked. I’d arrived two stupid hours early. BUT HOW?
Oh. Right. Because the school was getting in one last throat punch, and today wasn’t a “half day”, it was an “early dismissal”, and they never thought to really specify between those two things, they just expected us tired, end of the year, already exhausted parents to know this somehow.
Back home, only to wait two hours, nearly forget what time “early dismissal” was, rush out the door, fight the minivan mafia, and wait 20 minutes just to get out of the parking lot because NO ONE EVER LETS YOU BACK OUT.
I always thought the best part of the school year was the beginning. FINALLY summer is over. FINALLY I get my house back. FINALLY I don’t have an audience when I pee, or people bothering me as soon as I sit down, or picking apart the lunch I make them as soon as I give it to them. School usually means I get my house back. But school also means I have to deal with school, and all the BS that comes along with it.
Which is better? The peace and quiet of having an empty house? Of your kids spending the day bugging someone else? Or, is it the day you don’t have to deal with drop off, pick up, homework hell, PTA Pirates, Minivan Mafias, and parent teacher conferences?
No… I’m seriously asking… because I have no damn idea anymore.
The fact that the wine section of Wal-Mart is directly next to the baby section cannot be an accident.
My Family’s Summer Schedule Full of FUN! (Yes, that’s Sarcasm) goo.gl/fb/wBR1Un
Actions speak louder than words! pic.twitter.com/O2r8sDIBuT
I'm Gordon pretty much all the time, to be honest. pic.twitter.com/29KrYzv6Ei
2017 has been a total wash thus far pic.twitter.com/N2J7qp2PxW
17 of the Most REAL, Honest, & HILARIOUS Parenting Memes on the Internet goo.gl/fb/gPZWNy
I've never had a near death experience, but I DID find 2 spiders in my house this morning, and that's pretty much the same thing.
If you like to be constantly criticized over your peanut butter to jelly ratio on sandwiches, being a parent is definitely for you.