(Sunday Paper, Volume I, Issue 9)
One of the best summers we ever had was the summer of 2009.
I had summers off from teaching and just two kids - my oldest was just shy of turning 3...and the then-youngest was not even one.
I got ambitious and created "Sucich Summer Camp" - with itinerary and everything - excited to have at least one little tag-along old enough to enjoy some summer activities other than laying on the couch watching "Sesame Street" (which is, I'm pretty sure, how we spent the summer of 2008).
I thought this would become an annual tradition - school ends for me and the kids, and Sucich Summer Camp would begin.
But things changed.
First, let me tell you about 2009. I found the itinerary as I was writing this. Here it is:
Sucich Summer Camp Itinerary
(Anyone between the ages of 0-4 is encouraged to enroll - last minute is OK! Call my cell to book.)
approx. 6:30am - Wake-Up Call
7am - Breakfast
8:30am - Morning Session A (see appendix)
10am - Morning Session B or combo (see appendix)
11:45am - Lunch
12:30pm - Indoor Play Time
2pm - Mandatory Nap Time (camp director included)
3:30pm - Afternoon Session (see appendix)
Session A mostly involves playgrounds:
-"Little" playground in Framingham
-"Big" playground in Wayland
-Exploration of other playgrounds in area
Session B includes:
-Arts and Crafts
-Trip to Boston (departure approx. 8:30am)
-Live Animals (farm or zoo)
Afternoon Session includes:
-More Arts and Crafts (Play-Doh, Crayons, Drawing, etc.)
**Rainy Days Include Visits to the Mall and Possible Multi-Media Alternatives**
I posted that on Facebook and I honestly can't remember if anyone joined us in these activities - there was a circle of friends through work and other avenues who all had kids the same-ish ages. I'm also pretty sure there were a lot of the rainy day activities...which could have been laziness or just a rainy summer.
But I distinctly remember doing some of the activities...those naps were glorious.
Anyway, as the children got older it became harder and harder for me to keep them entertained, but they also played with each other very well, so summers at home were going well.
In my last year of teaching, though, I worked through the summer, and the girls had their first experience with camp. They had a good time. But the problem was more me than them - I didn't love sending them there. I felt pretty guilty.
Then, of course, after I left teaching I was still home during the summer...but any time spent entertaining the kids was time I wasn't working. So last summer camp became a necessity. I was less heartbroken about sending them off to camp - but they didn't love it. They liked it OK, but drop-offs were hard and the guilt lingered.
This year, though, has been a godsend. The girls have loved their camp experiences. There are no tears from any of them at drop-off (mostly concerned about the youngest here) and they are ridiculously happy at the end of the day.
Which makes me ridiculously happy, because I'm getting tons of work done and I don't feel like I'm shorting my kids on fun summer experiences.
The end of July brings the end of camp - and then before you know it it'll be the last week of August and we'll be settling into a school routine.
In between we'll probably take a trip to New York...maybe play some softball...ride some bikes...I'm sure the girls will occupy themselves with Legos or something in the air conditioning for a couple of hours while I try to get some work done...but I don't mind sacrificing a little bit of work time next month.
I think I'm ready for a little Sucich Summer Camp myself.
*Thursday night was my third week as Comic Sit In at the Stand Up Break In in Jamaica Plain. It was one of the more fun shows I've done there...maybe because there was a pretty good audience. It's certainly more fun when the room is more full. If you're thinking about coming out for one of these shows while I'm there you have three more shots - August 4, 11, and 18. (The last Thursday of each month at The Riot Theater is an open mic, hence no performances on July 28 and August 25.)
*I'll put more info out about this soon, but I guess I should let you know if you want to make plans - I'll be at Comix at Mohegan Sun on Sunday night, August 7th. Show's at 8pm, here's the info.
*Been busy this week, nothing too exciting to tell you about. Just working. Been increasingly busier, too, which is definitely a good thing. (Why do I feel the need to explicitly tell you I've been working? Is it because I haven't been posting published work and I need to prove to you that doesn't mean I haven't been sitting around doing nothing? Maybe.)
*I do have one exciting project coming down the pike. (Pike or pipe? I think pike. Though it could theoretically come down the pipe too.) I'll let you know about that when it's closer to publication...I'd say before the end of August.
What I've Been Enjoying
*Somehow I missed the fact that another season of Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee had started. My brother alerted me to the fact that there were new episodes up in late June, and I didn't get around to watching them until this week. If you've never seen the show, Jerry Seinfeld sits down to a cup of coffee with someone - usually a comedian, but sometimes other actors or personalities (like President Obama) - and they chat. (He also showcases some kind of rare car.) It's on-line only - at http://comediansincarsgettingcoffee.com - and it's bite-sized. Episodes are usually under 20 minutes, and the seasons are short - from like 6 to 9 episodes each. This is the eighth season (I think there's pretty much one season in the winter and one in the summer, but I could be wrong about the timing) and the John Oliver episode that went up this week was the sixth one of the current batch, so I'm not sure if that's it for this go-around.
It's kind of a no-brainer that I would love the show - I love Seinfeld, I love the world of comedy, and I love coffee. (I could do without the cars.) Sometimes the shows themselves are funny - this week's with Oliver had a lot of laugh-out-loud moments for me - but the draw for me is more about the conversations about comedy. (I also like to watch because I fantasize about what a good conversation Jerry Seinfeld and I would have - I think we have a lot in common.) And sometimes the locations are the fun part - some episodes are shot in Los Angeles, some are in New York. It's fun to try to pick out places I recognize in the New York ones. That's what makes the episodes (the only 2-parter) with Jimmy Fallon my favorite, because it takes place in Montauk and every shot is something I recognize. I really recommend the show - all of the episodes are available at the website.
*I was showing the girls my Pittsburgh pictures and I had taken one close-up shot of the 1993-1994 New York Rangers team engraved on the Stanley Cup....and the girls noticed a misspelling on the trophy. If you look closely at the Islanders from 1980-1981 you'll see that it's missing the first 's'. I vaguely remember someone mentioning this somewhere, so I don't think I'm revealing anything earth-shattering here, but I thought I'd share it with you.
*I posted on the Facebook page about this but I haven't yet put it in the Sunday Paper - I was on a podcast recently. Kenice Mobley is a Boston-area comedian who has this podcast called "Person About Town". I'm a fan - she talks with someone she knows - writers, comedians, usually someone from the Boston arts scene - and they take her around their favorite spot in Boston. I was flattered that she had me on and we talked about my writing and comedy and being a parent. And then she asked to include the girls as part of the parenting piece. Since we were involving the kids and I didn't want to make them walk all around Boston with us we picked my favorite place that's not in Boston - the Lexington Battle Green. You can find that interview here, through Kenice's website.
*Feel free to share my Facebook writing page or to encourage people you think would enjoy it to "Like" it - it was fun to get over 200 Likes but we've kind of stalled out again. If Twitter's your thing, I'll take a follow over there, too. Thanks for all the support!