Willful Words of Wednesday #1 – Routines and Summer Camp

As I write, it seems like the words don’t always go where I expect them to go. So Willful Words of Wednesday seems somewhat appropriate.

Morning Routine

This morning my parents helped with transporting the kids to school. Morning routine is a struggle for us most days. My therapist suggested a few weeks ago that part of the reason is that I am waking up pissed off that I have to do morning routine by myself, so much so that it doesn’t take hardly anything from he kids to get me yelling. Kraston had been very involved in morning routine since I am not naturally a morning person.

Since making this realization, I try to say a Hail Mary or two right when I first wake up. Also just knowing that is part of why mornings are so hard, just kind of makes a difference. I’ve also been working on an afternoon routine that helps with organizing out mornings, but we aren’t very consistent with it yet.

So after all of those conclusions, I asked my parents to help take kids to school on Wednesday and Friday mornings. Those are the two days that irritate me the most when the kids are late since those are the mornings that they have mass at 8:15 at school.

So now my mom takes Eleanor to preschool on her way to work, and my dad takes the big kids on his way to work. My dad is a bit impatient with the kids in the morning, but otherwise it seems to be working out okay. Really takes a bit of stress off that I don’t have to get myself ready before sending them all out the door. I can take a bit of time getting dressed and eating my oatmeal.

Summer Camp Tour

This morning I toured a Montessori school whose summer camp program I am interested in. The hours and options are perfect and the price is reasonable. I have friends whose kids attend and they love it there.

I am not sure how I feel about it. I think I liked it, but it is definitely a different environment than my kids and I are used to. I am also not sure if some of the hesitancy is due to my experience with last year’s summer camp.

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Summer Camp Flashback

Eldest son attended the summer camp at Motion Tulsa the past two summers. He loved it the first year and liked it pretty well the second year. Last year they opened up the program to 5 year olds for the first time, which meant I enrolled eldest daughter. She didn’t have a particularly good time. I wasn’t really sure why at the time.

A few weeks after camp ended, someone asked to read our Super Duper Safety School book for bed routine book. It had been a while since we had read it, and generally I read whatever book they pick, so I thought nothing of it. Until Rule #6 came along (“My PRIVATE PARTS are PRIVATE.”) When we got to the part that says “[…] no one should try to play a “touching game” with the private parts on your body […]”, my daughter informed me that another little girl at camp had told her to play a “private parts” game with her if she wanted to be her friend.


I had to work really hard not to over react on that one. I started to ask her about it, but in true large family fashion, a furor ensued in the other room that I had to tend to right after she said this. By the time I got whatever it was settled down, the moment had passed and I wasn’t sure how to bring it up without making it a “big deal.”

So I texted her therapist.

The following week after daughter’s therapy session, her therapist said she would call me later after the kids were in bed to discuss. So after the kids were in bed, I took her call. She said that my daughter had made a disclosure about what happened and relayed the details about the incident. Therapist said she had no concerns about my daughter or our family, but that she would have to call the child abuse hotline to report what had happened. She then continued that since she mentioned it to me first and now that I was more aware of the situation that I should call and make my own report. Calling the child abuse hotline was definitely not on my life’s bucket list, but I did as directed the next day.

So, anyway I encourage you all to have the Super Duper Safety School or something similar and to read it periodically with your kids. My daughter’s incident is fairly minor in the great scheme of child abuse and as such the incident doesn’t seem to have particularly affected her. It definitely brought to light some insecurities that need to be worked on and some discussions about peer pressure that needed to occur in order to head off any more serious incidents in the future.

She is such a strong personality that it would never have occurred to me that she would be the victim of something like this, just because a little girl said she wouldn’t be friends with her if she didn’t do it. And then after she did it, the little girl was mean to her and wouldn’t be friends with her. I don’t know what was going on in that little girls’s life that she dreamed up this touching game, but I periodically pray for her.

Summer Camp Options

Ending flashback mode, I am still researching and considering options for summer camp. This evening I spoke with Gabriel about going to the 4 year old class at Eleanor’s school and he didn’t seem to have any strong objections. It certainly gives me some more options for the two bigger kids.

Since last August I have had a full time nanny, but she currently works 3-9:30 M-F and 2-9:30 on Saturdays and those are still going to be valuable hours for me to have her working during the summer.

So in order to give us some more options, I’m considering working afternoons instead of mornings. I would like to let Ben and Rosemary have some unstructured time during the summer and so finding some afternoon only programs seems like a relatively easy way to do it. They do really well entertaining themselves (without screens) on Saturday mornings, so I think they could handle it. We can go to the gym where I get up to 2 hours per day of child care for $9 per month per kid. We can also do swim lessons a few mornings per week.

So I’m currently reviewing the options at Holland Hall, Monte Cassino and Philbrook Museum as these three are relatively close.

The Rest of the Day

It is getting late, so the rest of the day is going to get pretty abbreviated. I got my workout in. I took Gabriel on a very quick date night dinner to Firehouse Subs (his favorite place, he even changed into a firetruck shirt for the occassion). I’ll write more about my date nights with the kids another time.

After dinner, we picked up Ben and Rosemary to attend the 3rd and final night of the Parish Mission. We were late, but the last 2/3 of the talk was good. We stayed until the bitter end of the reception so Rosemary could help clean up as she had previously promised she would. Even Ben helped out a bit.

Good Night!!


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