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This the best sucky summer ever!

These are the three most frequent complaints coming out of my mouth this summer.

I can’t believe 5 year-old is not in camp.

Are you kidding me, another game tonight??

5 year-old is annoying me.

It’s true, this summer has not gone according to plan. Not that I had a plan, but I wasn’t prepared for baseball averaging five nights a week, and my five year-old putting the kabash on camp for even a few hours each day. On top of that, 8 year-old had some bus issues, so now I’m driving him every morning and either picking him at camp or at a friend’s each afternoon.

There’s a whole lot of schlepping back and forth, a whole lot of laundry and a whole lot of run, run, run! At times, I feel frustrated, stressed and a little overwhelmed. For some reason, I expected summer to be more relaxing, but reality has crushed my expectations.

The truth is my crushed reality is actually a very satisfying, full summer. Yes, I pretty much have seen no friends. Yes, I’ve had very little down time. And, even though, my 5 year-old and I are spending so much quality time together that the word quality is questionable, I can see a day in the not so near future when I am no longer his favorite person. He will not cling to me like this forever. I don’t know if we’ll even make it another year, but I’ll be damned if I’m not going to appreciate this beautiful, bouncy boy constantly tugging annoyingly at my shirt.

I love you. now go away.

I love you. Now go away.

Even as my feisty 8 year-old spits fire in my direction, I marvel at his desperate and aggressive need for independence. Plus, the minute he runs out of steam, he happily holds my hand.

Soon we'll be holding hands... sigh

Almost out of steam… Allllmooost.

While my 11 year-old may ignore me while meditating to a computer game, I live for the goofy grin I get once he recognizes I’ve been trying to reach him from the outside world.

Wait for it...

Wait for it…

There it is.

Ahhh!

And baseball? Well, despite it being my least favorite major league sport, there’s nothing like watching your kid play. Even if you’re watching with your hands covering your eyes, while gritting your teeth and holding your breath.

So on many summer nights, okay most, I am lounging in my Tommy Bahama chair, an iced coffee in the side drink pocket, surrounded by friendly parents, cheering our kids while our other kids become part of the scenery; having a catch or kicking a ball, or even sometimes, when the slushies are really blue and the pretzels are salty and soft, leaning up against the fence watching their brother play.

I’ve got nothing to complain about.

My happy cage

I know why the caged bird sings…