The fresh air.
The clean water.
As close to nature as you are ever going to get.
Well, as close to nature as I was ever going to get, at least. Remember Summer Camp? I never went as a kid, but I went as a young adult. And it changed my life. I swear it did. Ask my friends. I was such a piece of work before I set foot on the shores of the South Tea. Camp Tamakwa, in Algonquin Park, Ontario. I was lucky enough to be hired as the Drama Director, and I loved every single minute of it. Ok, wait. Maybe not every minute…but close. It was beautiful. And it transformed me from a spoiled-Jappy-girl-with-fake-nails-from-the-suburbs, to a make-up-free-we-all-get-dirty-and-shower-in-the-lake girl that never wanted to go home. Summer Camp was a place that I only assumed my boys would go. I mean, I went there. Of course, why wouldn’t they? What kid wouldn’t want to sleep away from home for 4 weeks?
Assuming makes an ass out of u and me.
Not all kids go to sleep away camp…
And my kids are part of the “not”. Not my Momma’s boys. No way! They are attached to my hip. Be careful, you might trip over the cord. So, no…they were home with me all summer. And I watched my friends post pictures of their kids getting on buses for camps all over the US of A. I was jealous. Knowing exactly what they had to look forward to, the fun that was in store…the friends that would be made. Sigh. As my boys had a summer filled with video games, and fighting; theirs had Color Wars, food fights, and first kisses. Dangit. I beg them. I plead. I show them camp websites with videos! I even sign them up for camp without telling them! But no, they tell me its child abuse. And I’m the worst Mom ever if I make them go…
So I should be blogging about this new guy I’m seeing, but I’m not. I got my hands on a new book! It’s called Summer Sleep-Away, by Ofer Aronskind, and I think…it just may be my ticket to Summer Camp for next year! I couldn’t put it down, and if I can get Zac and Jonah to read it…they will be on the next bus to Tamakwa! Not only is it heartfelt, and touching…I feel like all camp stories should be all that, right? But it is imaginative. And it’s told by a 10-year old boy that may not have wanted to go to camp, but needed to go. Kinda like my guys. His parents were fighting, and hiding it…thinking he didn’t understand what was going on. But he did. Kids are so smart. In this novel, the young boy, Mattie Klienfeld, really needed to get out of his house. Away from the stress. So his parents send him. And he’s far from happy…and he’s far from home, and he’s scared. Sounds great, I know! But he learns to work through his homesickness, and has an entire summer of “firsts” and adventures…
First canoe trip. First best friends. First girlfriend. First time sailing, and camping…and omg! And sure, I get it. As a mom, you don’t want to miss those times. But after reading this book, and hearing it from the kid’s perspective…it just makes me want my boys to experience it that much more. I’m like flipping out! In fact, I read one of the “game-changing” chapters to Zac. When Mattie, finds something really-super cool at camp from his families past. I’m not going to ruin it, but Mom’s your boys will LOVE IT! And Zac was freaking! He’s like, “Read more, Mom. Or just gimme that book!” Ha. So, I kept reading…and we ended up finishing the whole thing. I think I might actually have him a little more excited about going! Maybe. Cross your fingers, k?
I mean, if there’s a girl that “looks” anything like Nicole in Summer Sleep-Away, by Ofer Aronskind …I just might have a chance at a full month of freedom! This is an easy, quick read that will engage your imagination. Even if you never went to sleepover camp, or plan on sending your kid…it’s a fabulous story. I also just happened to attach the link to Amazon so you can order it directly. I love to be helpful like that! Go get it, all y’all. If you don’t like it, I’ll send your kid to camp! ;)