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Tales of a Beaverton Super-Mom: Overachieving is Overrated…At Least in the Summer!

| September 1, 2014 | 0 Comments

18-super-mom-leadI’m writing this two weeks before school starts, and I am FREAKING. OUT. Not because the kids don’t have adequate clothes or supplies or I’m worried about the schools they’ll be attending– but because it’s late August and we have done NOTHING. Well, we’ve actually done EVERYTHING we wanted to, and nothing we probably should have. Don’t judge, but my children have not cracked open a workbook or read required anything or even thought about the speed of two trains going in opposite directions—for TWO MONTHS!! And I am STRESSING because I know this means they are already behind and that inevitably someone will ask them what they’ve studied over the summer– and the biggest issue with these durned children is that they will be completely honest and say, “NOT A THING!” with huge, popsicle-stained grins on their faces. And my secret will be out.

(Now, in my defense, I did purchase those well-intentioned workbooks that promise a $10 gift certificate from the local toy store if the children actually FINISH them. Unfortunately, not only were they uninterested in finishing, but they weren’t actually all that motivated to even OPEN them …and since I’ve always been reluctant about rewarding for learning, anyway, we have some pristine workbooks that are yours for the asking!)

How DID they spend their time, you’re wondering? It all seems a blur now…but I do remember picking and baking and tracking dirt all over and watching endless movies and building things and breaking things and dipping our toes in water from at least four different counties and hours of “unrequired” reading and playing on electronics A LOT and staying out late and smelling like campfires and singing loudly and staring at the ceiling and staring at the stars and running them to their beloved camps and drawing and riding bikes way too fast downhill and hanging out with friends. But I do not remember much studying of anything beyond the map of our vacation. And I’m crossing my fingers that the academic world will forgive, because beyond them memorizing times tables and literary terms, I memorized the squeals and water fights and most importantly, the laughter. Like the day I was beyond exasperated for no particular reason in Kohl’s, while the big girls were in a rare partnership while making fun of my short temper, and all I wanted to do was decide on the color of a discounted kitchen stool so I innocently asked if there was a sample I could take home– to which my 12 yr-old deadpanned, “So mom, what you’re saying is you’d like to take home a stool sample?” And my irritated façade immediately cracked because I was giggling so hard I almost peed. Or the time my 5 yr-old was transferring items from her “experiment” headquarters on the back deck (where things inadvertently combusted during those unusually hot days), and she accidently spilled some disgusting goop on Aurelia, then objected to her sister’s justified reaction with: “Au-WAY-lia!! You act like you’re not even a WASHABLE marker!!” Or the afternoon we made an impromptu beach trip, which turned out to be the most magical of sunset-and-s’mores night but started off very unpromising (as the best moments typically do, and one must just stoically plug through to get to the good part), and the big girls were arguing like only tweens can with me and each other in McMenamin’s, and all I wanted was to order a Ruby and lay my head down…when Kiana sidled up to me in her I-Must-Be-The-Best-Daughter-Because-I-Am-Not-Misbehaving impression and randomly whispered in my ear, “Hashtag: I love you, mom.”

#loveyoutoo

#dontchangeathing

#learningthroughliving

#slackermomsunite

By Maureen Wilson

Maureen is an educator, Girl Scout leader, and often frazzled parent to 3 active girls. She finds motherhood to be a far more humorous and humbling experience than she ever expected.

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Category: Beaverton Voice, Tales of a Super-Mom

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