Summer break is in full swing, y’all. And even though I worried about losing my ever-loving mind, it hasn't been that bad so far. Sure, there’s been bickering. Sure, I've
duct-taped everyone’s mouths shut made
threats. Sure, I've seen more nudity than a clothing-optional resort. But in
the grand scheme of things, I kinda dig the more relaxed, “it’s-summer-so-don’t-worry-about-keeping-a-tight-schedule”
Not having to hold your poop. Okay, so I’m venturing into the realm of TMI here, but this is a legit reason to be excited about summer break. Because if you’re a morning pooper with children in your household, you have more than likely had to postpone a poo or two. Urge hits you at 7:50 a.m.? Too bad, sucka! You've got to get the kids out the door and drop them off at school on time – otherwise you’ll have to actually walk them in which means you’ll have to actually look publicly presentable. And then the kids will be counted as “tardy” and resent you for placing your bowels at a higher level of importance than their education and will probably end up in therapy some day because of it. And you might get a speeding ticket on the way home because, well, sometimes a dump just doesn't like to wait. But in summer, you don’t have to worry about any of that. Oh, you want breakfast? Sure, I’ll make it. RIGHT AFTER I POOP. (And wash my hands, of course. Because ew.) And speaking of the morning meal …
Not having to wait to eat breakfast. This is yet another thing I postpone for the sake of my kids. On school mornings, I make them their breakfasts and then while they eat, I run around laying out clothes and finding stray shoes and packing lunches and checking backpacks. When they’re done, I supervise hair-fixing and shoe-tying and toddler-dressing and tooth-brushing and find socks that I just laid out like five minutes ago so how far could they have possibly gone? Then, of course, it’s time to haul everyone into the vehicle and make sure they’re strapped in and schlep everybody to the school. After all that – after I’ve been out of bed for like two and a half hours and run around like a madwoman and made sure everyone else’s needs have been met – I finally get to eat breakfast. By which point my stomach feels like it’s gnawing on itself. To add insult to injury, when my two-year-old sees me eating, he suddenly thinks he’s hungry again … and just like that, half my long-awaited breakfast is gone. But in the summer, I can actually eat with the kids, and when everybody has their own stuff I don’t have to share. Boo-yah.
Not having to find decent clothing. During the school year, I prefer to have children who don’t look like a hot mess, which is why I insist that the clothes they wear be a.) free of holes, rips, stains, excessive wrinkles, and visible dirt, and b.) coordinating: no striped shirt and plaid shorts, for example. This creates some extra work for me, though, as I not only have to make sure such clothing is laundered and un-wrinkled, but actually locate said clothing each morning (is it in the dryer? The drawer? The closet? The laundry basket? Oh crap, did I leave it in the washer?). Summer time, though, is a free-for-all. When I actually get my kids to wear clothes, they can put on whatever the hell they want most of the time. Spaghetti-stained t-shirt and size 3T pajama pants that look like capris? Okay.
Not having to deal with homework. This one is a universal favorite among parents and needs little explanation. You don’t have to stand over your kids and nag them to keep going while they lay their heads on the table like they're exhausted and whine about doing their homework. No frustrated “I can’t dooooo iiiiit!” meltdowns. No surprise bedtime reminders of “Oh, by the way, I'm supposed to bring an empty oatmeal box, fifteen clothespins, and a blank poster board to school tomorrow.” Just sweet, blissful freedom.
Not being a slave to the bedtime routine. When school is in session, I’m a stickler for a regular bedtime. No matter what, my kids are bathed, brushed, read to, and tucked in by 8:30. This sucks, of course, because we all know what happens when you try to get kids to do anything on a schedule: they dawdle, and you have to
follow them around with a cattle prod constantly remind them to stay on task. But in the summer, evenings are a lot more relaxed (which is important, because you try explaining to your kids why they have to go to bed when it's still light outside while those hooligans from down the street are riding their bikes in front of your house). We didn't do much to get dirty that day? No need for a full bath - just take a baby wipe to the important areas and call it good. Fall asleep on the couch watching TV, I don't care. You wanna sleep on the floor tonight? Whatever. I don't mind if they stay up late, because staying up late leads to sleeping later ... at least some of the time. Which is totally okay because they have nowhere to be in the mornings for the next couple of months.
And I? Will be enjoying a leisurely poop. On my own schedule.
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