Favorite summer memory to recreate for kids?

The ads for the new Adam Sandler movie “Grown Ups,” which was panned by critics but made more than $41 million this weekend, makes me think about what it would be like to recreate your favorite summer experience for your kids. (That’s not exactly the plot of the movie, but they are in an old cabin at a lake with their kids so that’s why I think about when I watch it.)

My mother was always trying to recreate her summers of fun at Daytona Beach for us. When she went as a child Daytona was busy but still pretty pure. They would spend the day at the beach and then go to the boardwalk every night. A band would be playing at clamshell bandstand and the kids would play simple carnival games. They would stay in the little kistchy motels across from the main drag.

We tried staying in Daytona a couple of times when we were little but it was too run down back then. (I understand Daytona has made a lot of improvements in the last 10 years.) But in the ’80s there were a lot of bikers and cars on the beach and questionable characters hanging around.

We switched to New Smyrna beach when I was a little but once a trip we always went to the Daytona boardwalk at night. We’d get salt-water taffy and play games. But it was always so sad because there was never any music coming from the clamshell bandstand. It was just silent and deteriorating.

My dad’s favorite summer memories are easier to recreate. He just always wants to take us crabbing in Savannah. The sport hasn’t changed much. He still connects long string lines to sinkers and ties them around chicken parts. You stake it into the marsh and sneak up on the nibbling crabs with nets. The only thing that has changed is you have to have a fishing license to crab now in Savannah.

We always had a wonderful time at New Smyrna beach growing up but now I’m afraid to take my kids there because of all the shark attacks over the last few years. (Sorry New Smyrna Chamber of Commerce.) So I guess that won’t be recreated unless something changes where the sharks are hanging out.

What favorite summer experiences would you like to recreate for your kids? What ones have you already recreated? Did they enjoy it as much as you did? Was it the same?

50 comments Add your comment

DB

June 28th, 2010
9:57 am

I don’t think you can ever “re-create” an experience — your children lack your family experience growing up, your parenting is probably different from your own parents, and your interests are probably different, too. I think it’s nice to share with your kids what your childhood was like, but to expect them to experience it the same way — isn’t going to happen. For example, I spent several summers with my grandparents as my mother was working on her master’s degree and my dad was working – one week on the farm, one week in a very tiny “town” in North Carolina, one week on the farm, etc., for the entire summer. As much as I enjoyed it as a 7 and 8 year old, I would NEVER have done the same with my own kids – because their grandparents don’t live on a farm, and have health issues that would preclude any active pastimes. We have traveled a great deal with our kids, and always made it a point to do it differently from my own family growing up, because my dad, bless his heart, always assumed the country was best seen from the rear view mirror going 80 mph. :-) We take a more deliberate approach :-)

I loved crabbing as a child — chicken necks tied with string and staked out, the excitement of seeing the line tighten as a crab tried to walk away with their ill-gotten gains, the “swoosh” of the net, the scrabbling of the crab . . . ah, fun! Or hanging off the dock of a river in Tidewater, Virginia and luring crabs by allowing them to latch on and then gently, oh so gently, lifting them enough to snag ‘em with a net. The only time we took our kids crabbing was down in Florida at St. Mark’s, and my daughter, who was 7 at the time, was carefully pulling on the taunt string to reel in a crab when — surprise! — we discovered that she had, instead, landed an alligator!! We both squealed, scrambled up the bank, and spent the next 30 minutes watching from a distance as the alligator cruised around the inlet, training our stake and string like dental floss. Ah, well. Hope he liked the chicken . . . so my daughter’s memories of crabbing are quite different from mine!

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
9:58 am

Well, I was prepared to share my memories of Penellwood, MI. It looks like the place is closed.

We would drive up from Chicago and have a family cabin. Our cousins each had a cabin with their families. The kids could hang out all day long and no one worried about what we were up to.
There was swimming, hiking, archery,square dancing,canoeing ( oh yes we headed out by ourselves at age 9) crafts etc. The parents just hung out and visited. They had ping, pong, shuffleboard, horseshoes etc. The bell rang and the meals were served family style, 3 times per day and we all ate at long tables with other families. I remember the fresh blueberries and raspberries. My sister and I still remember those fun times.

THEN my parents decided to take up camping. We went from a Starcraft pop-up to a fully loaded pull type camper. Those are not memories I would like to repeat. I will NEVER be someone who will roam the country in a camper with my husband…LOL. This is because I HAVE been from Chicago to California ( and many places in between) in a camper as an adolescent/teen …been there done that. We also went out most weekends, to the lake until we moved to our farm in Arkansas. I laugh at folks who tell me they are getting out of the city and moving WAY out to the country for peace and quiet. Hope that goes well for you…I lived on a farm and am not interested in repeating that experience! I realize that some folks are fine with road wash outs, no water because the electricity is out and the pump to the well does not work, no stores or restaurants for 30 miles.
NOT FOR ME. I can get to the grocery store here in 10 minutes!

As you know, I love to travel but a vacation ( to me) is NOT when I have to cook or lug all of my own things along with me. I am happy in a Holiday Inn or even a cabin…I like my own clean potty/shower/bed with sheets.

We never went to the beach as kids but my own children have been to lots of beaches from Florida to Hawaii and Alaska. They have been so many more places than either my husband or myself ever visited as kids. Travel has been a big part of our lives…even though we did not ever have a backyard trampoline (LOL…previous attack on me in the blog).

T…we have friends who love New Smyrna. I have not been there. We love St. Augustine and Marco Island, FL.

JATL

June 28th, 2010
9:59 am

Seriously Theresa -you do know sharks are everywhere, right? Also, research WHERE in New Smyrna they are -particularly the fact that they have not been happening on the main part of New Smyrna Beach, but north where it’s still considered New Smyrna (and I believe a river flows into the ocean,which is always sharky territory), but the water is a lot rougher and all the surfer boys hang out there. I haven’t been in a few years, but some girlfriends and I used to go every year for 7 or 8 years. We floated and boogie boarded for hours and none of us are missing limbs.

Anyway, the thing I most want to recreate for my boys -aside from yearly beach trips and really great BIG summer vacations when they’re a little older (Yellowstone, DC, Hawaii) that my parents took me on, is having fun at the lake. We went camping this weekend at Lake Allatoona, and for a few reasons it did not work out this trip. We’ve camped with them before and all was well, but not this time around, so it was disappointing. I had some of my best childhood memories on Lake Allatoona, so we’ll try again soon! We’re toying with the idea of a boat so we can hit the lake often. We want to buy a lake house at some point, but a boat is more affordable right now. I just really want my boys to grow up enjoying heading to the lake and getting that excited feeling when it’s time for a day on the lake!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

June 28th, 2010
10:00 am

JATL — I know it’s all about the intracoastal waterway dumping out fish and the sharks coming there to eat. and there are just a bunch of surfers getting in the way.

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
10:02 am

OOOPS…I forgot the ticks, snakes ( in our house) , skunks, chiggers, possums, and other “pets” on the farm. Also, the party line phone and no cable….aluminum foil and rabbit ears…that it probably updated now….LOL.

DB…love the crabbing story!

FCM

June 28th, 2010
10:15 am

My children do my favorite summer memory every night. They run out to catching lightenbugs and eat ice cream on the deck. We would shell peas, snaps beans, or shuck corn. My grandmother and mother would can it the next day—make the house hotter than Hades, and Grandma got sick if the A/C on…thus we children would go the pool without them!!!

We did not do family vacations…Mom took us to see family up north. Dad might show up to help drive us back. We did got Key West when I was 6, Disney when I was 9 & 11, San Fran when I was 18. Otherwise it was TN, PA, KY, or MI to see family.

My children go to the beach each year with his family. We do local trips, but we have yet to go out of town anyplace. The money seems to get spent on other things like the house, soccer, viola lessons, the pool fees, camp–where they do lots of fun stuff, etc.

They have not expressed a desire to go anyplace either. They feel that going to the beach with the otherside of the family is all the vacation they want…apparently sand is hard to get out of suits, so they are not thrilled by it…lol!

Truth

June 28th, 2010
10:26 am

Unfortuantely Theresa’s fear of EVERYTHING will not create memories for her children. Their memories will be made in the back yard. Oh wait, maybe not, there’s bugs out there, and quite possibly a snake or two, not to mention coyotes, oh and the pedophile at the end of the street. Their childhood memories will be video games and their mother’s fears……

Sk8ing Momma

June 28th, 2010
10:42 am

My favorite summer memories consist of going to overnight camp with friends. I LOVED it! My kids (11yo girl and 8 yo boy) are both overnight campers, too. This is the first year they have both gone. The had an awesome experience and are looking forward to going again next summer.

I also have fond memories of operating a lemonade stand and spending all of my proceeds on having a pizza delivered. This was in the early 80s…It took *FOREVER* for the pizza man to come ~ LOL! My kids have sold lemonade on a few occasions…I think we’ll have to pull out the stand this summer. :)

jacee

June 28th, 2010
11:01 am

MJG, would you please get over the past blogs!!! I’ve gotten use to you and actually read some of your comments recently but for the life of me, I don’t understand why you go on and on and on about someone’s post from a year ago…geesh, get a life!!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

June 28th, 2010
11:05 am

fcm — love the pea shucking image!

truth — they also hear all summer about skin cancer and putting on sunscreen.

they are currently loving snow cones — I bought the $14 sumbeam snow cone maker at Target last week and they are thoroughly enjoying snow cones every day. I posted that on Facebook yesterday and so many friends chimed in that they had the same machine and their kids were totally into the snow cones as well. one friend posted a cheap recipe for making the syrup — I will pull out of facebook and repost for the moms.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

June 28th, 2010
11:06 am

From a high school friend — basically a simple syrup with Kool-aid added but I wouldn’t have thought of it. I would have just started pouring lemonade over the ice but I guess that wouldn’t be thick enough.

Sno Cone Syrup Recipe: Boil 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water til sugar is dissolved. Add one packet unsweetend koolaid – any flavor. Cheep, fun, and the kids LOVE picking out the flavors. (Can make as many at a time as needed.)

Shocker

June 28th, 2010
11:12 am

“…but now I’m afraid to take my kids there because of all the shark attacks over the last few years”

TechMom

June 28th, 2010
11:25 am

The only summer memory I miss for my son is being bored enough to be excited for school to start back. Summer is so short now and my son has so many opportunities to go to camp & hang out at the lake with friends, and now he has summer conditioning for football that there’s hardly time to squeeze that summer reading in, let alone get bored enough to be ready for school to start back. I really just wish summer was longer and not so stinking busy.

dad

June 28th, 2010
11:32 am

I saw “Grown Ups” this weekend and thought it was very funny. It also wasn’t dirty at all, despite the reviews. It wasn’t Casa Blanca, but it was a decent movie with several big laughs.

Never trust the critics.

A

June 28th, 2010
11:39 am

@TechMom, summer is so short now? I don’t know what county you’re in, but here in Fulton kids are off for something like 13 weeks this year due to pushing the start date back 2 weeks. Just curious why you think that is short. What would be your ideal vacation? I think it’s waaay too long, but that’s just my humble opinion and I know I’m in the minority here. I am actually all for year-around school, where you get shorter but more frequent breaks and at different times of the year so you’re not stuck with 13 weeks off at the hottest time of the year.

FCM

June 28th, 2010
11:40 am

A– Cobb kids got out 5/21 but go back on 8/2. For some, summer IS short.

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
11:42 am

@ T…my post evaporated!

JATL

June 28th, 2010
11:46 am

@TechMom -I’m with you! I wish summer break was from Memorial Day until Labor Day every year, everywhere!

A

June 28th, 2010
11:54 am

@FCM, that’s why I asked where TechMom is located. I have friends in Cobb/Cherokee and they do have a shorter break. I guess it’s just us in Fulton with the long break. I really don’t agree with 13 weeks off at a stretch. It’s bad for retention of everything the kids just learned, and I guess I don’t agree that kids should be bored out of their skulls for an extended period. I agree they should have some time to do what they want – along with something more structured like camps or a vacation- but I am more for year-around school where you might get a week off in October or another non-traditional month.

Cammi317

June 28th, 2010
12:01 pm

We just came back from a semi “re-creation” on yesterday. When I was 12 and living in Chicago, my family and another traveled to Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado and Oklahoma one summer. Albeit, we did it by car when I was 12, my 12 y/o daughter and I took Amtrak from Atlanta to Chicago (with a brief stop over in DC along to the way). We stayed a few days in Chicago to visit family and then we took Amtrak from Chicago to Denver, Colorado. This was her first visit “out west”. I wanted her to see all of the open country. She was very excited when we crossed over the Mississippi River from Illinois into Iowa and the Missouri River from Iowa into Nebraska. It goes without saying that she was impressed to see the mountains in Colorado. Unfortunately Iowa was experiencing some extremely bad weather during our vacation and we were both sadden by the flooded fields and homes in Iowa. On the train ride from Chicago to Denver, we watched the Into the West mini series on her DVD player. We obviously had seen it before, but it was really a new experience to watch it as we traveled west. She really enjoyed the trip.

Photius

June 28th, 2010
12:03 pm

Putting on a ball cap, mit and playing catch with the kid. Simple joy of life.

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
12:05 pm

@ T, this is not the same post as the one that is missing from 11:40 ish.

@ JATL, I chat about this with teachers everywhere. I agree with your opinion! But some kids are not afforded the luxury of a lazy summer with Mom or Dad at home to hang out with. I had that option ( with my kids) and we had a lot of fun!

I think the school year is generally between 175-180 days. This is obviously 35 or 36 weeks but then we have to factor in the holiday breaks, holidays and workdays. Trying to get folks to agree to which is better, a longer summer or more breaks during the year might be like trying to get folks to all agree on one or two flavors of ice cream…HAHA!

It has JUST really hit me that I am NO longer on a school calendar, as mine are in college and professional school. Having kids in school, really can run your life and I guess I am now not on that schedule! New chapter in my life for sure!

Chicago by way of DC?

June 28th, 2010
12:09 pm

Not exactly the most direct way to go but, my, what an experience – those days will be memories for a lifetime – I am quite happy for y’all and want to go, too!

Cammi317

June 28th, 2010
12:14 pm

Amtrak has no direct trains from Atlanta to Chicago. You have to go through DC, crazy I know…

JATL

June 28th, 2010
12:48 pm

@MJG -I’m not disagreeing with you because I know you agreed with me, but this is my take on kids being bored over summer: I know it’s a scramble for some people with childcare, but I work full time as does my husband, and my kids are still having a great time at summer camps and with our nanny doing summery stuff, and then when one of us gets a chance to play hooky and in the evenings and on the weekends, we really enjoy the summer stuff we get to do together. I guess I don’t get why summer is such a problem for kids if parents are working -they’re working the rest of the year too, and quite honestly the variety of day camps and “fun” childcare in the summer is incredible in the Atlanta area. Even regular daycare centers seem to go out of their way in the summer to take kids swimming and on field trips. If kids are bored at home, I think it’s the parents’ fault for not planning ahead!

Lisaw

June 28th, 2010
12:53 pm

I’m always telling my kids how fun it was to grow up in Ct. and just swim everyday and eat cherries sitting on the sidewalk talking with friends, playing kick ball at night under the street lights, running after the ice cream man and camping in the back yard. The best memories and made you really feel summer. Barely no money spent and did not even miss not having a vacations. That was good enough. So different for my kids now its scary to let them out during the day let alone at night and with camps, summer ballet classes, and so many pools to choose from the simpleness is gone.
But, I do bring out a bowl a cherries sometimes and have them sit on the front porch with me.

JJ

June 28th, 2010
1:03 pm

Amen Photius!!!!

I always had a Badmitton tournament and kick ball games for the neighborhood kids in my previous neighborhood. We did brackets and everything. They loved it.

I recently ran into one of the neighborhood kids who is now working at Taco Bell, and he was like – “When’s the next badmitton tournament?” He said “We really loved those!!!!” 10 years later……

As a kid, we rode our bikes EVERYWHERE…..if you didn’t have a bike, you got left behind. We would go down to the college campus and play football on the field, go get ice cream then bike back home.

We would hike all through the moutains.

Shucking peas on the back porch with my Mom.

Swimming all day long at the community pool. We would ride the city bus to the pool, then walk across the street to my Dad’s office when he got off work, and catch a ride home with him.

TechMom

June 28th, 2010
1:03 pm

We live in Henry Co and have a “balanced calendar” so summer is only 8 weeks. That is way short to me. I could handle 10 weeks if they didn’t go back August 2nd or even if they shifted it a week out. But for example, this summer, the boy went on a mission trip for 2 weeks, came home for a week, went to the lake with a friend most of last week & is at Scout camp this week. Then he’ll be home for three weeks. One week he’s going to driver’s ed (4 whole days) and then the other two weeks he has to go to football conditioning 3 days a week. Then the week before school goes back they have football 2-a-days 3 days and then summer camp the 4 days before school goes back. Somewhere in there is he has to read and annotate 2 novels.

We have family that lives in Michigan and they don’t go back until September. Inevitably I have a cousin who gets married every August up there and we can never go more than a weekend and see family because our son has already started back to school.

Some parents here LOVE the balanced calendar. I would probably like it more if we could actually go somewhere on those breaks but if you have kids who play sports in middle/high school, forget it. They actually schedule practices and games over the breaks. There are a lot of families who take their family vacations during those weeks to places like Disney which are roasting hot and crowded during the summer and not so much in September but like I said, we usually have to be home for half of the break for practices/games and quite frankly, we can’t afford to go on vacation every break!

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
1:08 pm

@ JATL…planning ahead? That is a foreign concept for most folks…even planning period.
I deal with some who have no idea how to plan ahead and it can make me crazy. My daughter continues to remind me NOT to get involved with those whom I know to be LOOSEY GOOSEY, as I do not play well with these folks…LOL. I am almost always on a 6-9 month out schedule. There are those who cannot plan 6-9 hours out.

I am blessed that I was able to do stuff with my kids all summer. Being a teacher helped facilitate this lifestyle. Many years, I worked camps right along side of my kids in order to have extra money so that we could travel and see stuff. I am trying to do some fun things with my daughter before she heads out to UGA, as I know that will be the end of us being regular buddies…LOL. My son is outta here tomorrow, so I will have to make friends, again, with my husband…haha!
He is NOT someone who plans ahead….go figure.

@ Lisaw…oh yeah…the ice cream man. I have a song about it and many kids have NO idea what it is like to run to the truck with some change as their are so many horror stories about kidnappers now. My dog always runs to the window when she hears the music and barks…it is so funny!

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
1:22 pm

@ JJ…lol, when I was SIX, I rode the bus BY MYSELF in Chicago to take swimming lessons. My Mom did not drive and my sister was 3 or so. I also rode my bike to the corner store, ALONE, to get stuff for my Mother. I do not think many kids today ride bikes like we used to. Kind of a shame too!

@ TechMom…folks are still divided on the balanced calendar. Most schools I go to, that get go back after Labor Day are in school until mid June….that is the trade off. When I was in Montana, they had just gotten out of school and that was 2 weeks ago.

In HS, we moved to the farm. One thing I would NEVER wish on my kids was bailing hay. That was hard work and it was hot as stinkers. I did not have brothers and so my sister and I were out there ALL day long in overalls, boots and long sleeved shirts, so as not to get cut-up on our arms by the prickly hay. Life on the farm is not the life I would enjoy….been there done that! I fed calves and chickens, hauled hay, weeded a garden, climbed trees to pick fruit, dug potatoes and picked blackberries ( re: thorns, chiggers, ticks and snakes) between ages 14-18. I was THRILLED TO GET OFF OF THE FARM! I love the produce stand…hahahah!

@jacee..I have had a life and some of it has been hard work….LOL. Lived in 6 states and been to all 50 now!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

June 28th, 2010
1:30 pm

MJG – i will look for it in a second

TechMom

June 28th, 2010
1:34 pm

MJG, I hear ya. I wouldn’t have a problem if they got out a week or two later and went back a mid-August. It’s so stinking hot in August and I know June isn’t that much cooler (especially the last couple of weeks) but it’s still super hot. Plus there’s just something wrong with getting zero summer vacation in August & buying school supplies in July before the sales have started! I even had to buy the kiddo uniforms last week.

waterbug24

June 28th, 2010
1:38 pm

We will be recreating (of sorts) memories for my son. My grandparents took my mother to all 50 states, my parents took me and my sister to all 50 states, and now my husband and I will be taking my son (now 2 1/2) to all 50 states. It takes work and dedication, but it’s also lots of fun…and it gives you an education and appreciation for how people live differently all over the US.

PickinNits

June 28th, 2010
2:28 pm

People always claim that it’s “not safe for kids” these days. I believe that’s a figment of people’s overly paranoid imagination. Crime is actually down a significant amount over the time I was a kid in the 70s and 80s. I know people may think I’m crazy, but the only difference today is that we have access to entirely TOO MUCH information. If a kid is abducted in California we hear about it ad nauseam immediately. It begins to play havoc on an already overly developed helicopter parent mentality. I hate to be harsh, but I speak as a parent myself. Bad things happen to people. Your kids are people just like everyone else. Bad things are going to happen to your kids at some point in their lives. Some of them may be seriously injured. Others of them may die early. There is nothing you can do to prevent this other than teach them well and don’t make RECKLESS parenting decisions. If you allow your kid to ride his bike to the store a mile away and there is not a major multi lane highway he has to cross or deal with, that is NOT reckless parenting. He still could get killed by a reckless driver. The child has to live though and that involves at appropriate ages allowing him or her to experience the good and bad of life without the cushion and protection of apron strings.
There was a 15 year old from Cherokee County killed this weekend while tubing in N. Georgia. While it’s natural for her parents to be second guessing themselves for allowing her to go, they did the right thing. Sometime your number (and this goes for kids too) is up and there’s not a blessed thing you can do about it. Quit worrying and live.

Truth

June 28th, 2010
3:09 pm

AMEN!!!!!!! you cannot allow your fears to control your life THERESA!!!!!. Get out there and LIVE YOUR LIFE!!!! Don’t worry about the “what if’s”. My friends say Why, I say Why Not????

Don’t wait till you are on your deathbed to regret things you DIDN’T do……..

FCM

June 28th, 2010
3:13 pm

Interesting….the most “fond” memories are simple things. Things that were families hanging out together…not the work real hard to make it look like a TV Sitcom or Reality Show or Disney movie vacation.

Could it really be that children of all generations just enjoy sitting doing not much of anything (shelling peas, eating cherries, digging clams, or running on a farm) but just RELAXING AND ENJOYING THE TIME OFF FROM SCHOOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Imagine that….then maybe this 4th of July weekend you can live it. Sit on the porch and drink something. Ban technology for the night. Run through a sprinkler in shorts and a top. Play cards/checkers etc on the deck. Talk to the kid. Not at the kid, to the kid. You would be surprised how good a memory that will be in a few years too.

You think I am wrong? Watch what kids do at Cracker Barell. They sit in the rockers or play checkers. They all want to stop on the porch.

PickinNits

June 28th, 2010
3:15 pm

Please note that my comments were not directed at anyone in particular. I just wanted to address the idea that the world is somehow more dangerous now for kids than in earlier times. I’ve heard it expressed in this blog and comments before and heard it again today. I would say a kid is safer outside on his own all day than in front of a computer. That’s where the real predators are.

Cammi317

June 28th, 2010
3:22 pm

FCM, they do still enjoy the simple things, but unfortunately most of us adults are too busy to take the time to do it with them. There are times when I am just too tired from work or playing chauffeur back and forth to activities.. My daughter is constantly asking me to sit down and watch a movie or play a board game with her like I used to do. I am actually surprised that at 12 she still wants to do these things. Guess I’ll enjoy it while it lasts….

motherjanegoose

June 28th, 2010
3:26 pm

@ FCM… I am all for hanging out with a dripping popsicle and watching the fireflies! HOORAH FOR NON ELECTRONIC FUN!

When we were at the beach ( earlier in the month) and in the condo pool…a walk over the bridge to the ocean, there were a few 13 year olds goofing off in the pool with balls etc. One said, “hey, let’s go inside and play video games…”

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Some kids are NOT able to survive without electronics. They would be bored out of their minds at Cracker Barrel, a place I love! When I see 2 year olds boarding a plane with their DVD players, I know where that is going. Anyone remember colorforms and coloring books…that is what my kids took on the plane….LOL. We also play real games without batteries.

JATL

June 28th, 2010
3:27 pm

@PickinNits, Truth and FCM -agreed agreed agreed! FCM -we LOVE some sprinkler action. I love the fact that my kids seem as joyful and squeealy with delight when we have the sprinklers going as they do at White Water. When they get to run in the sprinkler until the fireflies appear -that’s pure heaven! I also have started a tradition of walking with my boys on Thursday nights up to our neighborhood ice cream place and letting them have ice cream for dinner. So simple and so incredibly rewarding for them and for me (they get ice cream, I get out of fixing them their normal decent dinner AND I get exercise). I will say one thing that I only got to do once as a kid with my dad, but we did yesterday and will be repeating over and over -going to a Braves game! I forgot just how much I enjoyed them (even when we’re being beaten mercilessly), and my 4 year old LOVED it -even more than I thought he would. That will enter into our “summer lexicon” of memories -many, many Sunday afternoons at the ballpark! And I love the fact that you can take in a soft-sided cooler of food and beverages.

JJ

June 28th, 2010
3:27 pm

Cammi317 – I’m never too busy for my daughter. Stop what you are doing and watch that movie, play that game. NOTHING is more important. Trust me, in about 4 years, she will not want to even acknowledge the fact that she has a mother……take the time NOW for it will be gone in the blink of an eye. Trust me.

Create those memories for your kids. There is nothing in this world more important than spending time with them. If you can’t make the time for your kids, then why did you have them? (Cammi – that was NOT directed to you, just a general statement…..)

Becky

June 28th, 2010
3:44 pm

Going to my Aunts and picking fresh veggies out of her garden..Nothing like a tomato or cucumber picked right off of the vine and eaten right there…Spending all day fishing, then cooking them..Pushing the lawnmower up the street, knocking on doors asking if you could cut their grass..Picking blackberries and selling them door to door..Having to sit on top of the ice cream maker while my brothers hand cranked it..

My list could go on and on, as I’m sure a lot of peoples could…My two have already done all of these things and will keep doing them..The boy is a fisher man as long as you will let him stand there with a pole..

The girl rode the big motorcycle this weekend for the first time..She’s not quiet 8 years old and only weighs about 48 lbs..Scared the daylights out of me for her to ride it, but she had a blast..They will not be kept in a bubble afraid of everything..

FCM

June 28th, 2010
3:49 pm

JATL–I do ice cream for dinner every so often…it is just good for the soul. Even in winter we do it! We get on the bed with a bowl and watch a movie. In the spring/summer we sit outside. Last night it was too hot to cook. So the girls sliced up cucumbers and other veggie nibblers. That and chips was dinner. They loved it.

Cammi–so do it over the long holiday weekend. No, none of us can do it everynight..but at least once a week try. It doesn’t even have to be the whole night. Just a few hours.

When you get home tonight decide to not care about dinner…grab some crackers and cheese, or similar. Go sit with her on the deck.

JD

June 28th, 2010
3:59 pm

FCM – ever tried tomato on a cracker with salt & pepper? A freind introduced it to us the other week and it blew me away. Perfect appetizer while waiting on the grill.

FCM

June 28th, 2010
4:04 pm

JD good idea! Never tried it that way, though I remember my mom doing it. She at 26 tomatoes (beefsteak not roma) one time and got ulcers in her mouth from the acid! Think I will go do that tonight for dinner, though I will cook for the kids.

Cammi317

June 28th, 2010
4:43 pm

JJ – No offense taken. On those occasions when I give her the too tired or too busy speech, my conscious tells me the exact same thing. We do plenty together, but there is definitely room for improvement.

Cammi317

June 28th, 2010
4:45 pm

FCM – that sounds like fun!

newblogger

June 28th, 2010
9:48 pm

All the neighborhood kids would meet in the park down the street from my house in the mornings and ride bikes, play in the park and each other’s backyards, go home for lunch and go right back out until dark. I don’t even remember complaining about the heat(and that was south Alabama so I’m sure it was hot!) I guess we were too busy having fun! I also remember shelling peas, chasing the ice cream truck, swimming at the rec. center pool (that we rode our bikes to) and catching fireflies. I love the fun summer opportunities that are out there for kids today, but sometimes I miss those unscripted summer days (mid 1970s).

Erin

June 29th, 2010
1:38 am

I have a LOT of summer memories I’m going to share with my kids someday! I might pick and choose the ones I want to recreate with them, though … some were probably not such great ideas, looking back!

Shelling beans out on the back porch on Saturday morning.
Rooting out all the honeysuckle we could find and eating the stuff inside.
Catching fireflies at dusk.
Fireworks at Stone Mountain on July 4th
Learning to fish … I had SO much fun learning how to fish, but never caught much, but I couldn’t have cared less. It was FUN!
Planting watermelon seeds to start a garden
Watching our newly-adopted kitten terrorize all the neighborhood dogs.
Starting a major roasted marshmallow fight with the neighborhood kids … We got melted marshmallow all over us, all over the house, all over the yard, all over EVERYTHING and I distinctly remember how much trouble we got in as a result, but it was a blast!
Going to the neighborhood pool EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.
Inventing games in the shade of the back porch on lazy summer afternoons.
Examining the tomato plants and cucumber vines every day to look for new “baby” tomatoes/cucumbers growing. And then biting directly into the ripe tomatoes when they were ready to be picked.
Did I mention running around catching fireflies? So. Much. Fun.
Going to the playground every single day and just having fun … I do remember how hot the slide got, and the seats on the swing set. Never stopped us though. And I always got sand in my sandals.
Drinking lots and lots of Kool-Aid.
Spending most of the mornings outside blowing bubbles.
Waiting on the ice cream truck … a HUGE thing for all of us kids in my neighborhood!
Cook outs with the neighbors … I believe those happened at least twice a week!
Watching the stars come out after sunset.
Slapping at the inevitable mosquito bites … I always got bit a LOT.
Learning to ride a bike and to roller skate … not a protective helmet or kneepad in sight, but we all somehow survived anyway!
Going indoors on the hottest afternoons and playing checkers or Hungry Hungry Hippo or Barbie dolls.

I did mention catching fireflies, right? I LOVED that! Those childhood days were VERY unstructured and I loved ‘em!

Josefina Argüello

July 19th, 2010
5:24 pm

I grew up and still live in Fl. so most of my childhood memories involve a shoreline on one of our coasts. There is something about the beach that calms my soul. My husband and I have a beach house on Acapulco that our two y/o has only been to a couple of times but I’ll be heartbroken if he doesn’t love it as much as I do.