Those Summer Days

20 Jul

It’s that time of the summer, the middle, that brings back mixed memories from my childhood. There were times that I wished summer would never end and days that dragged on.  I remember, as if it was this morning, standing outside of my mother’s room while she got dressed, complaining, “I’m so bored. What am I going to do today? There’s nothing to do and no one to be with….”

Most of the good times were spent at our pool club, Lakeridge West Swim Club.   Some years it was THE place to be. They had arts and crafts clubs where we used popsicle sticks to construct miniature houses. There were occasional Pre-Teen and Teen Nights and outdoor movies on a huge screen. There were some day trips and great days at the Jersey shore.

Although my best friend went to sleep away camp for the whole summer, my first and only experience at sleep away camp made me a stay-at-home girl.  I joined my sister during her second year at Camp Sacagawea –a rustic Girl Scout Camp. Perhaps because I was only 8 years old or maybe it was the spiders and other bugs, I cried non-stop for the 2 week session and refused to leave home like that again. I tried day camp, but did not like the long bus ride. I could never learn the bus songs or master lanyard to help pass the time.

My own children’s summer activities are different from mine and from each other. My daughter has gone to day camp or sleep away camp every summer. She thrives on the non- stop 18 hour action. My son has played baseball and now soccer each summer. Most summers he has plenty of friends to hang out with and participates in sports camps when his team is not practicing. Neither of my children cries out in boredom.

As I have helped my children choose from the abundance of summer options, I think about how good it was to be bored sometimes! I wonder what my mother would say-would she say our children are too busy during the summer? Also, I wish I could tell her, or maybe she knew, those moments of boredom certainly did not leave any scars. In fact, maybe they helped me to be more imaginative and inventive with my summer days.

What type of summer activities and rigor did you enjoy and what do your children enjoy?


3 Responses to “Those Summer Days”

  1. Deborah the Closet Monster July 21, 2011 at 2:41 am #

    Oh, man! Summers meant freedom. Mostly, they meant more free time to read entire books while sitting at the library, then make-believe all kinds of fantastic worlds together, either in our backyard or one of the nearby parks. Sweet to remember . . .

  2. nataliakbilash July 25, 2011 at 8:30 pm #

    Being Ukrainian, I had a very different summer from most of my non-Ukrainian friends. From age 8, I went to 3-week sleepaway camp with the Ukrainian Scouts. We had several scout-owned campsites, including one I regularly attended in the summer – in East Chatham, NY. Later when I was older, I gave back to the scout association by volunteering my time as a girl scout counselor. This year, my older daughter who is 17 is a camp girl scout counselor & is loving it. She however, chose a campsite near Buffalo, NY. I visited her this past weekend, while my husband visited our younger daughter – and both of them are having loads of fun. I met some of my closest friends at these camps – now I enjoy meeting them when they visit their children at the campsites. Great article as always Shari..


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    […] summer I wrote about “Those Summer Days” ( of my youth when I was sometimes thrilled to be at our swim club and sometimes overwhelmed with […]

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