13.5 Days and Counting

It would be hard for me to adequately describe how very much I am looking forward to summer at this moment.

It’s not just the summer weather, although the hours we will spend on our neighborhood beach and playground playing in the sand and in Lake Michigan are extraordinarily enjoyable.

It’s also not the Evanston Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings, despite the fact that we always see friends and neighbors there and get to hang out listening to live music with other families while husbands and wives take turns shopping and bringing back baked goods to tide the kids over…and then have the pleasure of going home with huge bags full of really fantastic food.

It’s not even all the vacation time we’re taking this summer, no matter how excited I am to go back to the rental house in Michigan with Matt’s family and then to spend two weeks in California with my family.

No, really, it’s the end of school.

It’s not having to leave the house early in the morning to drive the carpool even though I don’t have to be at the clinic until some later hour.  It’s allowing Lyle to nap every day, because we never have to leave at 2:00 to get his big brother from school.  It’s having two kids in the same place at the same time almost all the time for weeks on end, and not trying to coordinate who is where at what time and being picked up by whom when.  (Just typing that wore me out.)

And it’s less paperwork.  I just spent three hours sorting and organizing paper.  Oh, the paper!  It’s never-ending.  The field trip permission slips, birthday invitations, and walk-a-thon pledge forms.  The piles of Pokemon drawings and 3-year old writing, and the stack of corrected schoolwork that came home today.  Reminders about book swaps and multicultural assemblies and pages that need to be made for the teacher’s thank you book.  The good-bye gift for the student teacher and the donation being collected to give her a present from the parents.  The notes about all of the deposits due for summer camps, swim lessons, and next year’s nursery school.  The bills.  The magazines and catalogs. The condo association bills and notices. The Google calendar pages printed out and posted on the fridge – on top of the soccer game schedule print-out – that could make you dizzy if you looked at them too long.  The pledge statements from church and the checks that must be written now or never shall be.

The paperwork is the bane of my existence.  I get a headache just thinking about it.  If we aren’t focused on it for a couple of days it takes over the entirety of both our kitchen counter and my desk.  Imagine what happens when we’re not focused on it for a couple of weeks?

But even this slows down in the summer.  I’m ready for this.  All of it.

Boy, am I ready.

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9 responses to “13.5 Days and Counting

  1. Oh I hear ya. June 11th can’t come soon enough! I will absolutely, positively not miss the pick-up line circus one iota! I’m actually glad I can’t yet commiserate on the paperwork stuff just yet though! Much to look forward to this summer—Michigan sounds wonderful! Here’s to slowing down and finding new family routines!

  2. Gawd! I’m exhausted just reading about it!

  3. I hear ya’! I am a big fan of school and schedules, but even with just 2 kids and not a lot of activities it seems like utter madness. One of my friends said that she feels like she is practically “frothing at the mouth” to get out of the house each day (Let’s go! Do you have your lunch? Homework? Soccer stuff? Dance shoes? Too late for breakfast!). It is such a drag. And the paperwork! I am so with you there! Scott came home with: Corrected spelling test, a notice for a first grade picnic, a notice about a teacher gift collection, corrected homework, a classroom written project, and an end of the year classroom party invite. I am drowning.

  4. It takes me until Friday to get the Wednesday envelope done.

    I’m with you all the way, sister. Bring on summer movies, flip flops, and lazy, lazy do-nothing days.

  5. Why do teachers feel compelled to send home every single solitary worksheet the kids do in class?

    And, yes. Bring on the summer. I am so ready…

  6. Amen. We’ve got that with one extra child thrown in. Bring sack lunch today. Bring field trip forms. Can’t wear Merrill mocs today. Need special Field Trip Shirt. Send in $6.33, $5.22, $18.83 (why can’t it just be five bucks, even? Why can’t we just give someone 50 bucks at the beginning of the year and let them sort it out?). Need swimsuit for splash day. Why do pre-K children need a “graduation”? Yes, I’ll bring forks. Yes, I’ll bring a cheese tray. Yes, I have pictures from this year. Teacher retirement party. Teacher end-of-year gift. Class party. Picnic. Field trip. Another splash day. Author party. Early release. OT and speech appointments. Eye appointment. Insurance. Volunteer. Three different schools, three different school calendars. Medical bills. Childcare bills. Here’s $40 for “Teacher Appreciation Week”–times six teachers. Play dates double booked–oops. Camps almost double booked. Close to oops. And…where the hell did all of my money just go? And my time? Anyone seen my time?

    Yes, I’m looking forward to summer, too. Very much so.

  7. My countdown clock still says I have 26 days left 😦 😦

  8. Yes, Emily, you got it. It’s just a C.R.A.Z.Y. life, that’s all there is to it. When I think about that whole part of my life (parenting school-aged kids), I am not sure how I also manage to work and maintain involvement in committees in other organizations, but it helps me to remember why life seems so frenetic sometimes.

    Ooh, drama mama, tell me about the Wednesday envelope! Does the school try to streamline all the paperwork to come home at once? Because if so, that sounds helpful…

    CC, that’s a long countdown! I’m sorry!

  9. we don’t have the same sort of change come summer since we homeschool but i, too, am so looking forward to our time in RI at the beach, the heavenly beach. ahhhhhh!

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