Thursday, May 21, 2009

Don't Blink

I missed May.

I mean, wow. I missed a whole month!

I didn't miss my brother-in-law's birthday, my Dad's birthday, my FIL's birthday. I did laundry, cleaned house, got my car back, paid bills - and yet the time went by without me noticing. Granted, I was unconscious for about a week of May, but still... that was just one week. I'm talking about a MONTH.

The weather here has been very strange. Normally, we've got highs in the mid- to upper-80s and sometimes the 90s. The lows are in the seventies and it's the beginning of the hot and humid season where you wonder if you will ever stop sweating. But the last couple of days have had highs in the 60s, with rain and blustery, non-stop wind. I have loved it!

So I turned on the weather channel, wondering if ZBoy's last baseball game might be cancelled, and they were talking about Florida and rain and showed a satellite shot of the storm system hovering over the state. A big upper level low. With tropical storm speed winds, beach erosion, and comparable rain to a tropical storm.

Tropical storm?

Then I realized - hurricane season starts June 1. And here we are at the 21st of May. School is out at the end of next week.

I am totally unprepared. For hurricane season. For summer vacation.

Hurrican season is relatively easy. Stock up on the basics and be prepared to camp out in our own house for a week or so if necessary. But summer vacation? Another story.

We can't afford camps this summer. Z has gotten to an age when the cost goes up rather dramatically. We might be able to do one, maybe two. But that leaves another 8 weeks to take care of. We might be able to do the tag-team parenting thing. Work is fairly flexible in terms of hours - as long as I show face everyday, I can do much of it at home and put in two or three face hours a day. Darling Man can go in early, I can do afternoons.

That takes care of supervision, but what will we do with him?

1) Let him sleep in as long as he wants. I can do work early in the mornings while he's still sleeping. I can probably get three hours in during that time alone.

2) Feed him a healthy breakfast in preparation for some kind of intense activity. Bike riding, running, dog walking, yard work. Something to get him outside and moving around. We may be resurrecting the pool for one more season, so he can jump in after our activity to cool off.

3) Life lessons. This summer, he will learn to be more self-sufficient. He will learn how to really clean his room so that the dust is controlled, his sheets get changed and washed by him, he can wash his own clothes, cook one meal a week for all of us, and he can learn to clean the bathroom. My future daughter-in-law will thank me for starting his training early so that it's engrained by the time he marries her.

4) Afternoons, when it's stifilingly hot, he can pull the shades and lie down with a good book. Nap if he feels the need. Maybe play video/computer games a few days a week. And of course, there's always swimming if he wants to be active.

That would be HIS summer. How his father and I deal with splitting up the time, getting our work done and the hours put in will be the real challenge. We've done this before and we never saw each other. This year, I want it to be different.

And I've got a little less than two weeks to figure it all out.


Anonymous said...

Hi Sayre,

I came over from Ari's blog. Saw your comment on portulaca/moss rose. I'm in the Orange Park area and they grow very well here. They do like lots of sun. They faded at the end of the summer and died off in the winter. I was very surprised to find a couple that came back! I couldn't grow them at all in Gainesville where I had mostly shade.

Here is a website if you are interested:

I use a lot to choose my plants.


Liane Michel said...

Dang, I think Z would be less busy at camp!

I can relate to camp fees being higher. My challenge is finding a camp that would interest the kids that includes their age group. Seems like most cap it around age 14.

You should check out our city parks program. It's much cheaper than the "specialty" camps, the kids are active all day with sports, crafts, music, etc., they make friends, they have cookouts, some parks have a pool.... and I think you can pay per day or for a couple days a week so you don't have to enroll for the entire summer. (That may not be the case now, you would have to check).

Anyway, the parks program wasa great solution for my situation.

Hoosier Girl said...

I know how you feel - I realized today that I haven't even signed Aaron up for swimming lessons! I usually do that in the first week of May! Help!!


Beckie said...

I've been trying to get my son to be more self sufficient - if you figure out any secrets on that one let me know. It seems like an impossible task at times.

Island Rider said...

I remember how hard it can be, but cherish it. In a blink, he will be sixteen and driving himself to work and in another blink, he will be off to college.

min said...

Patti, portulacas were just about the only thing I was able to grow in Gainesville...but my record for plants is lousy.

As for ZBoy...just get him a PlayStation!
Problem solved.

margaret (the misanthrope) said...

Yay for teaching those life skills early! I guess summer "vacation" won't be much of a vacation for you and DM. I heard about the "early" tropical-type rain in FL too! Stay dry, and I hope you are feeling better!

Floridacracker said...

That has been one of the side benefits of teaching. Summers were a time of adventure and fun rather than wondering how to cover both work and kid coverage with school out.

I hope it works out smoothly for you.

Janis said...

Your at that in between age with Zboy, he still needs supervision. Hang in there, you will figure something out. Summer break can be a real problem for parents who work. I agree with teaching him to be responsible and have chores to do during the day. He will thank you one day.