We’ll be starting our 12th homeschooling year in a few weeks. It doesn’t seem possible. Lately, I’ve been thinking about how much our school has changed since we began (most notably, the kid who started the whole thing is now a graduate). That got me thinking about how our summer breaks have changed, too, particularly for me, as the homeschool mom.
1. I no longer stay up half the night. That’s probably the biggest way my summer break has changed. I used to be a night owl. These days, I’d just as soon go to bed early, watch a Castle or Bones episode with my husband, and go to sleep at a decent hour, thank you very much.
It may also have something to do with the fact that I used to have to stay up late to enjoy a quiet, peaceful house. Now that my kids are all older and night owls, I have to get up early to do that. Either way, I’ve learned to really enjoy the morning hours and not struggle with getting up nearly as much as I used to.
2. I don’t arrange park play dates. Okay, we didn’t do a whole, whole lot of that even back in the day once the weather got hot. However, now all of my kids are way too old for park play dates. These days, it’s bowling (with Kids Bowl Free) and laser tag, the jump park or rock climbing (both on the agenda, but not experienced yet), and maybe some roller skating.
3. I’m planning on seeing some summer movies. You know the summer kids’ movies that many of the theaters do? Our local theaters are offering a movie, drink, and popcorn for $4. We used to never do those. Know why? Because the movies play at 10 AM. Remember how I used to be a night owl? Add to that the fact that my kids have never liked to get up early either and 10 AM movies have never appealed to us.
Now that I’m up early most days, though, it doesn’t seem so impossible to get my youngest – the only one who’s interested in going with me – out of bed in time to go. The most disappointing thing? The movie I most want to see is playing the week she’s at camp. Oh, well. I wonder if people would look at me strange if I went alone?
4. I get up early to run. I confess that I had gotten lazy there for awhile, but I’ve been running again the last few weeks – thanks to the accountability of my amazing running buddy – and building my distance back up. I don’t always enjoy it at the time, but once I’m done, it sure feels good to have gotten the day off to an active start. I don’t ever, ever want to go back to being obese.
5. Summer breaks don’t involve nearly as much sweet tea. You would think summer and sweet tea go together. They do, but just a couple of glasses a day these days, not a gallon. Yes, seriously, I used to drink a gallon in a day or two. Again, I don’t ever, ever want to go back to obesity.
6. They’re much shorter than they used to be. With us schooling year round, taking a six week break for summer and another at Christmas, our summer breaks are much shorter than they used to be. I won’t lie and say that I don’t wish we could extend our break by a couple or four weeks – I enjoy a relaxing break as much as the next person – but we all really, really enjoy having a break week after every six weeks of school, so we’ll take the short summer.
Have you been homeschooling a while? In what ways have your summer breaks changed over the years?