Thursday, June 14, 2012

Summer Term and Sailing

It should not be a such a momentous, tumultuous event.

After all, our normal rhythm is to have some time for study and work each morning.

Back in the Day, when the kids were younger, there was no conflict. We would take a month off when we wanted to, or a week for a holiday, and kept on working the rest of the time. That was before they had friends and neighbors who went to school and made a huge, hairy fuss about summer vacation or conferences or whatever other time they had off.

 Diversity; some children go to school 7 hours a day and finish before you do. You are finished by noon and take days off when they cannot. We like diversity, it means freedom.

Reality: the two teens involved in the summer school scheme are mad as hatters. "It's not fair. I'm not going to do it. I will only have a month off before I have to go to public school."

Fair? Nobody ever promised fair. Well, maybe diverse governments throughout the ages, but we all know how that turns out. I can't make it fair, what I can do is give them my attention, love and energy, what I expect in return is their best effort, respect and good humor. (Maybe the last item is asking a lot, oh well!) After all, they did get a 6-week trip in to France and came home with some excellently poor vocabulary choices to show for it, a new appreciation for their French family and life in Europe, and absolutely no formal work completed in that time.

In the meantime, we have had glorious times; park days and long walks and our first sailing outing of the season; on Lake MacBride this year. The day was perfect, hot, but windy. The company was exquisite; easy-going, relaxed and full of good ideas.  I mostly catered drinks and snacks, applied sunscreen to small people, and knit in the shade. The children kayaked or sailed with whichever adult felt like being on the water. Pierre spent the day on Sunrise, our little boat, battling with the elements, taming the excited kids and enjoying himself immensely.

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