We have it down to a science -- LIza's dad takes a week off in June to stay home with her afterschool ends but before camp begins -- then she goes to 4 weeks of daycamp at her school -- then 4 weeks of theater camp at her acting school, then I take a week off to spend with her after the camps are over but school hasn't started -- and I do another week of days off and working from home for the first week of school which has a wacky schedule.
we have a pool at our condo so we swim every night after camp/work that we can -- we go to alot of beaches and lakes, last summer we went to Plymouth and provincetown during our August week, this summer we're renting a beach house in Maine (that I've been scrimping and saving for determined to make it happen) we play alot of mini golf, sit on the deck and read alot and eat our body weight in ice cream. Her day camps give her lots to do.
this will be our fifth summer doing it this way and it seems to be working!
Nope. I don't feel any guilt during the summer or the rest of the year for that matter. I am working to provide for my family and am able to give DD a great life because of it. That actually makes me rather proud.
Of course the fact that this summer DD will be going to the DC she went to from 2yo - 5 yo (where the people are like family) makes it even more wonderful. We are both sooo excited to see them again!
i sometimes wonder how thrilled kids are who have to be at summer camps as early as 6:30 in the morning.
This is one of the reasons I am glad that my boys are now old enough to stay home by themselves. They have done summer day camps in the past, which have run the gamut from stinky to fabulous. Last year we tried to get YDS to go to the GATE summer school program in our school district - not interested, which bummed me out, because I had hoped he'd like it (and have something to do in the mornings). We have also usually gone camping for a week, but last year we couldn't and we can't again this year.
This summer will be different because I will be on maternity leave the whole time. ODS will be 14 and can get a job through the City's youth summer job program, so we're looking into that. He is also volunteering at a local museum for part of the summer. YDS claims he is going to help me with the baby every day... we'll see how fast that gets old for him. We may still look for a camp or class or something for him. They are both going to sleepaway camp the last two weeks of the break.
I have never felt guilty about sending them to day camp. There are some really good ones in our area, and we've learned which ones suck and to avoid them. I don't believe in kids sitting around at home all day, every day in the summer, vegging out in front of the TV/computer.
Why hide your light under a bushel of bears, I ask you?
I've been very lucky this way. I've been able to work on a school-year basis up until last year, when I tried working from home on a pt basis during the summer. It worked pretty well, so I'm going to do it again this year. It's a little harder for me because I have to chauffeur the kids around to their stuff, so I end up working some nights when they're in bed, but they're old enough (9 and 12) that I can do some of it in the afternoons when they're hanging out with their friends.
My kids do a mixture of free time and camps in the summer. We mainly use the camps for stuff they don't get enough of during the school year. DD1 is doing a week of horse camp and two weeks of half-day art camp. DD2 is doing 1 week of half-day drama camp and 3 weeks of half-day art camp. They have swim team every morning, they have horseback riding and piano once a week, and they spend the rest of the summer hanging out at our house or at the pool with their friends. So no, I don't feel guilty--it doesn't affect them that much, and part of my summer money pays for their camps, which are not cheap. DD1's horse camp costs $600 for the week.:(
Have you ever thought about hiring a college student for part of the summer so your ds could see how he likes that? If you get someone who can drive, it wouldn't be boring for him. I know several families who do this in the summer.
Guilt is for when I've done something wrong. Working isn't wrong, so I feel no guilt.
I do however in the summer wish I could be home with them more and go to the pool all day and other activities.