This happens every time they don’t have school. Presidents Day, Fall Break, snow days, teachers’ in-service. In their minds, all the world revolves around school.
I wish it did. I wish when I woke up today all I had to look forward to was figuring out whether I should ride my bike to the library or stay at home and organize my room. I’d love to live by the school calendar. I did once. Sort of.
About three years ago I got a sabbatical from work. Two months paid time off in addition to my regular vacation. I piled it all together and took the summer off with Dee. (Em wasn’t in school yet.) That’s the summer I taught Dee how to do writing practice. We sat together on a squishy blue sofa in a cafe near our house and wrote on topics like, The Rio Grande for 10, GO!
That’s also the summer I realized how good Dee was, how good we all are when we don’t have a monkey in our heads telling us otherwise. Dee showed me what beginner’s mind was.
Now she writes all the time. And paints, too. Writing and painting journals fill her shelves. She leaves homemade books lying around the house with illustrated stories about horses and girls and fairies. Em is starting to write, too. I’ve just realized she’s probably at the age where I can teach her writing practice as well.
Now that the days are lighter later, we can pull out our paints or pens after work and practice together. Just the girls. Not as great as having the entire summer off, but pretty darned good.