If I had my job review based on my performance this week, I'd probably get a promotion. Wait--mothers don't have reviews, we don't get promoted, we can't retire, and we can't quit. But this was a good week.
This was Amanda's first week of summer. Yes, I think that school here in Connecticut went the latest in the whole country. Last summer, I had grand plans: themed weeks, weekly field trips, special snacks. But this year my goal was just to make sure her days were fun and varied (meaning not watching TV or playing on the computer for the bulk of each day), and that I give her some special attention each day as well.
I had planned a couple of activities, like decorating a night shirt with fabric markers, beginning the Family Book Club, and after coming across this recipe at Mom Advice, making bath crayons (which she had repeatedly told me that she and Kyle "needed").
But most of them were impromptu. She was coloring on Monday, making a project she had seen on TV, and I sat down and colored with her. I even let her get the watercolors out, instead of thinking, "That's going to make a mess."
On Tuesday, I bought a spiral notebook and told her that she and I were going to write a story together. She loves to write at school, but I know she wouldn't choose this activity on her own. So, she wrote a few pages, I wrote a few pages, and she wrote a few more pages. It has been laid aside, but maybe I'll make sure that at least once a week we are adding to it. It's fun because she praises my ideas, and of course, I praise hers. Her dialogue is fantastic.
On Wednesday, while surfing around Works for Me Wednesday, I read Katherine's cookie recipe, and since Amanda always loves a baking project, we made them that very day. They were good.
On Friday, the rainy, cloudy, muggy week ended, and we had a beautiful New England summer day: low humidity, breezy, temperature in the high 70's. While Kyle napped, we read together on the porch, and she suggested that when he woke up, we should all take a walk together, so we did.
Planning is a good idea. I need to have some idea about what we are going to do that week. For me, I think that planning means looking back at the goals for the summer and making sure I have a few ideas up my sleeve to implement them, along with any required pant, glue or books. But I think what really helped me make this last week a success was implementing that Nike slogan, "Just Do It." I planned a couple of easy things, and actually did them. When I saw an opportunity, like inviting her to come out on the porch and read with me or sitting down to color with her, I seized it.