Friday, July 1, 2011

The Myth of Relaxing Summers

‘Scuse me but what happened to the proverbial “lazy days of summer”? When I was growing up (late 1960’s/early ‘70’s), summers were spent playing outside, engaging in play dates with friends, trips to a neighborhood pool, some time at the beach, and the annual trek down South and Southwest (we lived in New England) to visit relatives. Occasionally my siblings and I would participate in a week-long day camp. As a teenager, I journeyed up to Martha’s Vineyard Island for a week or two of the absolute best Christian camp ever (haven’t found one like it since), first as a camper and later as a counselor. Picnics could be enjoyed as cold air was gone for a few precious months, and our crabapple tree moved on from fragrant blossoms to crabby little fruits that fell and rotted in our yard. I loved finding and tasting them though. Perhaps our parents found summers tiring; I don’t know.

My summers seem quite a bit busier than those of my childhood. Is it simply because I’m a parent and have traded school-related responsibilities for summer-related ones? Or is our generation decidedly busier than that of generations past? My three kids are doing several weeks of camps (two different ones which means driving in different directions), the older two are counselors. There was the youth group “away camp”, play dates with friends (who I must help transport), swim team – ah, there’s one huge difference. Neither my siblings nor I made that big of a commitment, and if we had, would meets have lasted 6 hours long? Surely not. Then there are the grown up activities for we parents. I’m certainly busier with writing deadlines, blogging, and other things.

Just seems so much busier. I do love sleeping in later than on school mornings but at day’s end, there still seems like an endless list of unfinished items that spill over to the next day, then the next, then the next…

Does anyone relate to this?


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