Friday, July 26, 2013

Summer Whiplash

I want to go to the camper!

I want to go to church!

I want to go to Ms. Jeanine's pool!

I want to go to the pancake place!

I want to go to school in my bathing suit!

...And, all of these requests came in the first minutes of waking up this morning.

...And, once again, I was dogged by a nagging question, "Can you have too much fun?"

There's no doubt about it-- we've had an action- packed summer. We have gone and played and ate and swam and...

It might just be easier to show instead of tell--

Over the Memorial Day holiday, Marty and I took our first, real kid- free vacation. While we enjoyed a week in the Dominican sans tantrums and potty emergencies, the kids were spoiled by Aunt Windy, Uncle Tom, and GiGi.

We were only home from our trip for a couple of days before we moved into birthday celebration mode-- first a ship and then a party at a bounce house. Emily and Drew asked to go to a bounce house every day for at least the next two weeks.

The next weekend found us on the road for a weekend trip to Charlotte to visit friends and Carowinds. We even managed to squeeze in a trip to Discovery Place.

And then there were trips to pools of all shapes and sizes...
Thanks, Ms. Austin!

And, Ms. Jeanine.

And, Daddy for blowing up our new camper pool

Oh, let's not forget all the weekend trips to the camper!

With trips to the camper come trips to the sand.

Tired yet?

We're not done.

There was a Battleship visit,

a trip to the Children's Museum,

our first big kid movie,

and Vacation Bible School (Sorry--no pictures yet. Mommy's been busy teaching).

Whew. Is it any wonder my kids have summer whiplash? That they wake up asking to go 10 different places in 10 minutes?

They are only three, and I think I know they have done more than I did in 10 years of my childhood.

I spent my summers outside, barefoot, making forts and mudpies, while cooling off with juice jugs and Mr. Freeze Freezer pops.

Going anywhere was a luxury. For my kids, it's a way of life.

I'm not going to go so far as to say any of the above fun is bad.

I don't think it's bad to give kids experiences, especially when they are shared experiences.

I don't think we spoil kids with our love and attention.

But I do wonder (notice I didn't say worry) about balance.

Am I creating kids who will need constant entertainment--kids who will complain about being bored once the activity inevitably slows down?

Is it possible to be too busy? To have too much fun?

I'd love to hear your thoughts. I'll be sure to read and respond just as soon as we get back home from our final night of Vacation Bible School and before we head to the beach for the rest of the weekend...


Rory Bore said...

I think you are right....too much stimulation = lots of work for mommy and daddy, which = eventual burnout.
for everyone.
my kids will do the same thing each summer morning: 10 different requests in the first 10 minutes of waking. Do they not know me at all!??
appear with coffee before demands children -- you might get a "yes". LOL
but I do try to not pack our schedule. they've had 3 outings this week - and today we are home. and that is where we will stay. And I don't feel one bit guilty about it. they are happy playing with their toys and in their own backyard. while I finally catch up on some blog reading and writing.

if it ain't broke - don't fix it.

(but I do LOVE that pirate ship play structure. that is so awesome.)

Samantha said...

When my girls got sick last week, it was a relief to just put our busy summer schedule on hold and do nothing. I was getting burnt out trying to entertain them!

Little Pink Houses of Hope said...

Very selfishly, I think more trips to Ms. Jeanine's are in order!
I think it is great to take trips at your house as well.. build the fort in the living room.. play board tag in the front yard... catch lightning bugs in a jar!

Olusola said...

I think kids (& adults) need to learn to manage boredom and the occasional loack of active stimulation but at the same time childhood is made of memories & your kids will always remember their summers with a smile.

BTW, congrats on the new job

Heather B said...

I think there is a balance. The boys get bored easily and we have been trying to cultivate them making their own fun when we aren't going somewhere or doing something. But like yours, they always want to know what we are doing that day! I am tired looking at all of those activities! :)

Tasha said...

Summer is for making memories for sure, BUT I do feel children need to learn that life is boring sometimes. They need down time. Simple stay at home and find something to do in the room where you have an embarrassing amount of toys/junk! And like I tell my boys from time to time, "It is not my job to entertain you 24 hrs a go find something to do"! Maybe a little nicer :)
All that being said, enjoy the last days of SUMMER!

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