Monday, August 12, 2013

Past Deadline: Which Way to the Beath?

Here is Past Deadline from the June 20/13 issue of The Perth Courier.
Which way to the beach?
 As I write this, there are 10 more sleeps until the kids’ last day of school.
I mean, “Yaaaay!”
(No…I really mean gulp.)
There are lots of things to love about summer, such as the warm days (or, in our case, the memory of such things because spring certainly hasn’t set the stage), the ability to sleep in a few minutes later (for those people who aren’t waging a hideous war with their alarm clocks in some ridiculous effort to trick their brains into thinking they should get up earlier and exercise) and…hmm. What was I talking about?
Oh, yes. I am desperately seeking the silver lining for the kids being home for the summer. Er…I mean…I am listing the top-of-mind happy reasons why I am totally psyched, as a work-at-home mom, for the kids to be around me 24-7 for a couple of months.
Right. So I think I left off at the part where I don’t have to make bagged lunches every night. Yesssssss! Seems like a simple thing but, man, I get tired of that job, and I know the kids get tired of eating what I pack as my imagination wanes for lunch ideas in the dying days of the school year.
And, of course, there’s vacation to look forward to – that week or two when the whole family traipses off on some sort of awesome adventure and Mom gets a total break from domestic drudgery. I mean, except for the packing. And, if a cottage is involved, the meal prep. Oh, and the avalanche of laundry when it’s all over.
But it’s totally worth it!
What else…what else…. Oh, yes! The promises! Each summer I make a mental note – and even sometimes commit it to paper – about all the cool little things I’ll do to make summer vacation more fun for the kids. You know, such as trips to the beach at Murphys Point or to actually take our canoe out on the Tay or go fishing or hiking or walking or biking. We’ll play more games and fly kites.
Murphys Point Provincial Park. S. Gray photo
Murphys Point Provincial Park. S. Gray photo
Did I mention I have flexible hours – but that I work all summer?
Maybe I’ll put a little note at the end of the list – whether it’s a mental or paper one – to try not to feel the usual guilt when September rolls around and I realize all the things we didn’t get around to doing.
Time really does fly and it’s hard to catch – even with a bug net.
The silly thing is, every year the same thing happens. I dive into summer with grand plans, and end it saying I have to do things differently next year. The thing is, each year the kids are another year older, so a strategy that might have worked last year may not apply this year.
What I need is a plan.
Clearly I must win the lottery. Obviously this would solve all of the above issues. Without the need to work, the kids and I could hang out at the beach and/or fly kites and go fishing whenever we want. In fact, we could just purchase a “summer home” and be done with the whole commuting to a lake issue. This is the way to go.
If I don’t win the lottery for some reason (e.g. never buying tickets), then the obvious answer is to get up earlier. I’ll get my work done at the crack of dawn and free up time later in the day for the beach.
Yes! It’s a good plan!
(At this rate I will be getting up for the day at 3 a.m. Pass the coffee, please.)

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