The kids had a blast at camp. They came home full of stories and everything they had to say was positive. They both seemed to step out of their comfort zones and challenged themselves -- C. rode the zip line -- "It was exciting and terrifying," he said -- the boy does not like heights, so this was truly a step out for him. E. attempted the high ropes course. She had to be rescued part way through when she couldn't keep from falling, but she tried. They both spent a lot of time on the water, and they interacted with many different kids both from their group and the other groups there.
When I went to pick them up on Friday night, I completely expected my daughter to run up and hug me, hugger that she is. Instead, she waved from afar, and went about talking to friends before finally coming over to where I was. I was glad she enjoyed herself so much that I wasn't her first thought upon returning home.
But home they are. It was a busy weekend. While they were en route back to western Pennsylvania, my husband was busy breaking his ankle. This is a man who twitches at the thought of not being able to be busy, yet he is resigned to four weeks off his foot. I offered to teach him to knit. He declined.
Allergy season is upon us, as evidenced by C.'s incessant sneezing and nose-blowing for the past two days, poor kid. But, it's that time of year...he's probably in for another month of discomfort before it fully abates.
E. has her birthday coming up next week. She'll be twelve. This means we have one more year before there are two teenagers in our house. Lately I've been thinking about all of the things I really want to teach her, to share with her...not academics, but things about real life. Things that are important to learn from your mom. Things like, "Know you are loved, always and immutably." And "You come from a long line of strong women...draw on their strength when you doubt your own." And "You are unique and special and perfect just as you are...don't try to be someone else."
These life lessons are hard to learn and easy to forget. They also make up the sentiments found on any number of greeting cards, it seems. But for my girl, I want them to be real and personal and ideas that she can live her life by. I know it is more than a matter of just telling them to her. For this reason, I am thankful that we homeschool, that I have so many more hours with her than many parents have with their kids, hours that allow me to teach by example and to have conversations and to hug...lots of hugs.