Summer Camp :: Why This Mom is Saying “No Thank You”

Summer Camp? No thank you.

My kids like school *pretty much* most of the time. They enjoy spending time with their friends, they love art and music and PE most of all. I’ve struggled with the idea of putting them in summer camp for the last few years. I mean, I never went to summer camp, and I turned out just fine {insert eye-roll-here}.

We thrive on routine

Summer CampOur house thrives on routine and order, so during the school year, we have just that. Specific times to wake up and go to bed, certain foods we eat and activities we participate in. But summer throws the routine to the wind. I keep considering summer camp because that would allow the routine to continue in most cases. To be honest, though, I feel like my life is so over-scheduled. If one thing is thrown off, 20 others follow. My life is over-scheduled because I’m a “yes” mom, and my kids’ lives are over-scheduled because I try to fit in too much which often turns out just to be stressful. Sports teams, music lessons, chess club, and other after school activities make our days simply overwhelming.

Time to stop

For this summer, I have decided to stop. I stopped signing them up for every sport at the local playground. I stopped volunteering to host every event. I stopped trying to convince them basketball camp is actually going to be fun. I even stopped entertaining the idea of a full time summer camp.

A summer of play

This summer, my kids will just play. They will play outside. They will ride bikes. They will swim. They will have friends over and they will go to friends’ houses. They will attend the two or three mini-half-day camps for specific activities they enjoy. They will fight over Legos and Pokemon cards. They will spend far too much screen time playing Minecraft and Dragon City and watching Johnny Test.

And you know what? I’m really, finally at peace with that.

What are your kids doing this summer? Do you prefer camps or activities at home?

Tara Rosenkranz
Tara is a mom of four and lives in Metairie with her husband, kids, dog, birds and turtle. When she's not at home with her circus, she's at work or taxiing children around the city. Her favorite holiday is Mardi Gras. Tara loves to read, drink KranzCoffee and eat Double Stuff Oreos.

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