Candy-Coated Summertime Lies…

It’s almost here! Here’s a little gem I wrote back when all 4 kids were still at home. Guess what? ALL 4 kids will be home this summer, and history will repeat itself…Yay!!! (Mostly)

Summer vacation is a time to relax and unwind. It is during these months that we decompress and refuel our body, mind and soul… Is anyone else scoffing? Do you know WHY you scoff at that rose-colored description? Because it’s a LIE, that’s why. A big fat lie that does NOT deliver on its candy-coated promises. Thanks to the summer, I have more gray hair, more of a grocery bill and less sanity. I will initiate a grass-roots movement to have mandatory labor camps for school-aged children so that the following does not occur:

Me (In middle of an intense meeting, my phone rings. It’s from one of my children, so I answered, fearing a catastrophe): “Hello?”

Ayden: “Mom, what do you want me to mow?”

Me (Trying not to yell because I’m being stared at, so I whisper psychotically): “The grass.”

Ayden (Oblivious to my deteriorating sanity): “Ok! Love you. Bye!”

That is just one example of many. One time I got a call from Aubrey telling me that Ayden kicked her. Well, it was more like a tap, but it hurt her feelings. Then I got a call 5 minutes later that she couldn’t find her iPod, and then she texted me to say hi and ask when I would be home. I told her 30 minutes. When I got home 37 minutes later, she was angry. I asked her why and she told me I was late.  Let me explain that I’m gone 3 hours at the most and I live across the street from my grandmother and have 2 teenagers and an 11-year-old that are more than capable of holding down the fort for that period of time. One day it took me an extra hour, an HOUR, people, to do what I needed to do because it’s the law that EVERY time your child calls or texts you MUST respond. When I got home that day I was almost certifiably insane; I had to stop shopping and respond, then I had to pull the car over and respond, 3 times. When I walked in the door I had grown horns. I said very calmly and slowly, “Unless you are bleeding or dying or otherwise mortally wounded or desperately ill, DO NOT CALL ME.” I later modified that directive to a more reasonable, “Only send me a text or call me if you need to.” That was stupid, just so you know.

And the food bill! Good grief, these people eat a lot of cereal, and fruit snacks, and grapes, and and and. I feel entitled to a reserved parking spot at the grocery store. I sometimes have the urge to walk up to an employee and remind them that I’m the reason they have a job. Me, the lady you see every other day buying milk and eggs and bread and frozen pizza and Capri Sun and Gatorade and reduced-for-quick sale meats. You’re welcome, employee. Hope you’re enjoying your summer.

I say all this to say that in spite of the chaos, I’m kind of sad that school begins. We live in such a busy culture that there’s no room for a season of calm. So we have to make it intentionally. I’m not sure how to do that, exactly, but it starts with give-me-your-phones-at-9 every night and we-cancelled-cable. It’s something. I may add mandatory-board-game-night, but that may get me excommunicated. Wait, maybe that’s the answer. My next blog will be written from the blissful silence of my shed. 

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