Postcards from Camp Whattawedo

June 24th, 2013

Lazy mornings, active afternoons

A friend and I were congratulating ourselves the other day on how well summer break is going, when we realized it hasn’t even been two full weeks yet. That moment may have encompassed both the high and low morale points of the season.

Perhaps we peaked too early, but Camp Whattawedo is in full swing. I’ve had to tweak the mornings a bit to get them closer to autopilot, but the overall concept of lazy mornings and active afternoons is working pretty well so far. It may make sense to switch them around as the temperatures move into the three digits, but I love not having to herd groggy kids around in the mornings.

Mondays we work on a creative project. Today, it was rediscovering the Legos. TIP: I found a cool source for building plans called Rebrickable, which generates downloadable plans for new creations based on the model numbers of sets you already own (you can look them up on Amazon if you recklessly threw out the manuals long ago). Last week, we built a Viking village for dragons out of dollar store craft sticks. They have colored ones now, which in my opinion, is a major leap forward in art and design.

Tuesdays, we swim. They swim. I read. I still can’t get over being able to finally do that. For pages at a stretch.

Wednesdays, we’ve been going to the brand spanking new children’s library. There’s not much for my big kids there (the cool new teen library is downtown), but the Littlest Who is doing a weekly theater program in the beautiful sunlit auditorium, while I sit at the back of the room and catch up on People magazine.

Thursdays, we swim. I don’t know what we’re going to do Tuesdays and Thursdays when it gets too hot to swim during the day here. Hitchhike to Maine, maybe.

Fridays are field trip days. I had to pick up my teenager from sleepaway camp the first week, but last week we went bowling. I thought it might be a hard sell to the 14-year-old, but he was really into it. TIP: we get two games of bowling per day, FREE, through It’s nationwide, so check it out (expect to pay for shoe rentals and snacks). Physical activity in air conditioned comfort is good. Maybe bowling can replace one of our weekly pool days, and we can swim at night instead. We never get tired of night swimming, and by mid-July in Arkansas, it’s the only tolerable way to get outdoors.

It must be said that not everyone has been thrilled with the concept of summer structure, however loose. This was posted on Day Two.

The renegade camp was attracting defectors, until the smallest of them asked what was for lunch, and was referred to the new schedule. He studied it for a moment, then announced he would be in Camp Whatever in the mornings, and Camp Whattawedo in the afternoons.

I didn’t bother to point out that Camp Whattawedo is basically Camp Whatever in the mornings already. Let him think he’s hacked the system.

How’s your summer going so far?

One Response to “Postcards from Camp Whattawedo”

  1. Kelly says:

    Mine sounds a lot like yours, so far. We’re also going to be getting in the triple-digits — I can still do pool days in the mornings, but it’s so hard for me to get us out of the house before 10. Or 11.

    This is also my first year of “you swim, I read in the shade.” I remember envying those moms, and now I’m living the dream. 😉

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