An Unplanned Summer Isn’t a Lazy Summer
Spontaneous moments create memorable moments.
Summer is half over already. The weeks before preschool graduation, I wondered what I was going to do with Little Miss S all summer.
My only set plan for her was the four weeks at her new elementary school’s summer enrichment program. I didn’t sign her up for any camps because it’s not in our family budget. I didn’t sign her up for any classes because I didn’t want to drive anywhere for a one- to two-hour class. It didn’t seem worth the effort to pack her and Lil J in the car then fight traffic to get her to class.
I'll just play it by ear, I told everyone. Inside I was a little concerned. How was I going to juggle working from home and entertaining both kids all day? I was already running low on sleep, working into the wee hours of the night.
Sleep deprivation aside, my laid-back attitude is working out so far.
With only a week’s notice, I learned that Little Miss S qualified for a week-long all-day camp. It was incredibly budget friendly and transportation was included. She absolutely loved the week at camp. She came home singing camp songs and sharing stories about her day. I was able to put Lil J on a decent nap schedule for a week.
Again, at the last minute, we received tickets to see a couple of shows at Wolf Trap’s Theatre-in-the-Woods, its family-friendly summer programming. My husband was able to switch his schedule around and attended the concerts with us.
We were able to see the Milkshake Trio perform as well as Steve Roslonek of SteveSongs a couple of weeks later. Wolf Trap’s Theatre-in-the-Woods is outdoors and low-key. Wooden benches sit amphitheater-style, facing a medium-sized stage.
The atmosphere is relaxed since almost every grown-up there is in charge of small children. No one complained if a child ran in front of the stage or talked. Even the performers encouraged audience participation.
After the shows, we found a nice shaded spot and enjoyed the picnic lunch that I had packed the night before. We ate at a leisurely place. We had nowhere to go. We had no appointments to rush to. Lil J was a bit cranky because he missed his morning nap, but I knew he would pass out in the car on the way home.
As we drove home after our first trip to Wolf Trap, I realized how lucky we were. The kids saw a beautifully told story about the rainforest interpreted in dance by City Dance. After a short break, Milkshake performed a funny show that had even Lil J shaking his cute little booty. As a former costume designer and a former actor (my husband), we were thrilled to expose them to such high-quality live dance and music.
Moments like this cannot be planned. I’m definitely playing the rest of the summer by ear.
Thien-Kim Lam is looking forward to what the rest of the summer might bring. Her parent column appears on Colesville Patch each Tuesday. You can also find her blogging at I'm Not the Nanny and Cup of Creativi-Tea.