Grateful for Summer Vacation

Summer.  It’s here.  Actually it is nearly gone!?!?  At least from the perspective of our kids who are heading back to school in a little less than 2 weeks.  Recently, I heard my oldest say he is ready to get back to school.  Today the kids turned down an adventure to the ballpark to see the Knight’s AAA Baseball team play.  If they turn down dessert or watching random Disney shows I may need to call in help.  As a kid I remember the return to school with dread.  Nowadays, it seems the kids are actually ready for it.  Back to school clothes shopping made me cringe.  Picking out something as permanent as a Trapper Keeper or pencil case or the big rubber bungee that we used to carry books seemed like a decision of a lifetime.  As I emerged from Jr. High School (a phrase that my kids remind me no longer applies: “Daaaad, it is called MIDDLE School!”) I remember going to summer band camp to learn how to march and feeling like I was conned out of 2 extra weeks of summer!  But alas, it seems these kids are ready to return.  Who would’ve thunk it?!?

Thankfully we are ready to return them after a summer of some fun experiences.  Experiences I’m very grateful we could provide these three kids – not a day goes by without wondering how we got so lucky to be in the position to offer these experiences to our kids.

Our Summer in summary:

Sea Pines @ Hilton Head – same beach, same house, same week, same people.  When it works, why change?  Every time we go down there we leave wanting an excuse to go there even more.  Maybe a goal?  The one nuance with the trip this year was a side trip for me to NYC to help prep and present our team’s tech view to the only folk at the bank that could warrant such a side trip.  Unfortunate timing?  Definitely.  The right thing to do?  Not sure.  Will I make a habit of it?  Nope.  That’s the funny thing about life – there’s lots of considerations to be had in decisions.  Sometimes you do the best you can with the data in front of you and still wonder whether it was right, wrong or just was.

Adventure Guides Camping Trip at the new Charlotte Knight’s Stadium – pretty unbelievable setting.  A brand new ballpark in the middle of Uptown Charlotte with a backdrop of tall buildings as the view.  Start with a fun Charlotte Knights ballgame with seats 2-3 rows back from the field.  Then fireworks.  Then a movies on the screen viewed from the field near your tent after the game.  Then about 15 minutes of sleep – ok, more like 5 hours.  Tough ask on the kids but a memory they won’t soon forget.

Kids out of school – the help we get is amazing.  Grandpa, Nanny, Ms. O’Connor kept these kids hopping.  Libraries, movies, lunch dates, pools, water parks, racquetball, etc.  Good memories.

Kids camps  – each of our kids were lucky enough to go to 2 camps they got to choose themselves.  Not a single one disappointed a single kid.  I was especially proud of Stewart for going to her last camp (Camp Rock Stars) without knowing a single other child on Day 1.  Love this about her.  In addition to soccer skills and conditioning practices which wore him out, Will attended the Adventure Seekers Camp at the ASC Greenway and will attend his last camp next week, Camp Invention at Discovery Place.  Stewart hit the Adventure Seekers camp with Will and Charlie had 2 rounds of camp at the ASC Greenway as well with his former Pre-school age teachers.  We loved the Greenway camps because they entertained these kids nearly all day outdoors in nature!  Cool.

Polar Vortex – Maybe the most seasonable weather we’ve ever seen in a summer.  The Polar Vortex has afforded us 10-12 days in the high 70s, low 80s.  3-4 of these days in August!  While the rest of the globe sees record highs, this little sliver of the Eastern US gets a sweet reprieve and I for one am grateful.  Absolutely incredible.  Even more so when one is out driving around in a car without A/C.  Keep it up Mr. Vortex…keep it up.

As summers go it was a pretty great one.  But quick.  Here’s to the soon to be beginning of a new school year – the first of hopefully many for our youngest.  Wow – our last Kindergarten walk-in.

Click here for a link to our HHI Beach Vacation.

Click here for a link to the Adventure Guides Baseball Stadium Camping Trip.

Click here for other random photos from our summer.