My babies are disappearing.
The once tinkling explosions of giggles at extracting a nervous cricket from a stone wall now mutter with the groggy, deepened voices of men when I call into their darkened bedrooms to wake them before school.
The once chubby legs that raced across the daycare floor into my eager arms now stretch out, impossibly long, on their towering frames.
The chins that were painted with macaroni and cheese and bits of banana now display the little nicks and scrapes of razor blades.
Adventure was jumping in puddles, eating corn on the cob, feeding geese at a pond. Now it’s taking college-prep classes, Skyping while gaming with friends, reading iFunnies that I never seem to get.
My babies have disappeared. In their place are two almost-men and an unknown set of adventures in a just-as-thrilling frontier that stretches before us.
The Teen-Friendly Summer Bucket List
What does summer family time mean to me?
My father was a schoolteacher. My husband is a schoolteacher. I am a schoolteacher. Do you know those maps that take a city and exaggerate its prominence in a map of the world? That’s how the summer appears in the calendars of my life.
I felt the pangs of change looking over the sweet summer bucket lists of mothers with small children: make sidewalk chalk paint, make homemade bubbles, make flubber. Yes, those days are behind us.
How many family summers are left before jobs and girlfriends take over their lives? Maybe just this one. Better make the most of it.
Here is the teen-friendly summer bucket list:
- Play family doubles on a grass tennis court.
- Go tubing down the Farmington River.
- Jump off a cliff.
- Go canoeing or kayaking.
- Go paintballing.
- Go indoor skydiving.
- Get all five stars in Rock Band 2.
- Go for a family bike ride.
- Check out LARPing.
- Get matching tattoos (just kidding).
- Visit Mystic Seaport or Mystic Aquarium.
- Attend the US Open as a family.
- Have a cookout that ends with s’mores.
- Go on a picnic.
- Go for a hike.
What’s on your summer bucket list?
- Some of these are also on 101 Things in 1001 Days.
- Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies in Cages with Tigers
- If You Give a Mom a Blog