The season which gives parents an abundance of time to observe their offspring in an unstructured and relaxed environment. (Translation: Dear Lord, please send an angel to drag my teens from their beds before dinner and then takes my younger kids on many amazing field trips so that I do not have to hear the fighting. Amen and amen.)
But fo' rilly rills, I do love summer and I love having all my kids under one roof for a few months. Sometimes, they like it, too!
With that said, here are 7 quick-ish examples of how my 7 kids are dealing with this season, so far:
1) Killian. Thanks to college schedules, he's been on break the longest. A couple of weeks into his break, he had his previously scheduled shoulder surgery (Bankart repair) and will start physical therapy soon. This is the first summer since he was 13, that he hasn't worked and we can tell it's driving him a little crazy. He and Joe are "leveling" in size and maturity and I love that they hang out together so much!
2) Joe. Joe is gainfully employed at the same silk-screening company he worked at all last school year. He is a night owl and really resents when Maeve goes out for a late-night ice cream run with her aunt and "forgets" to invite him and Killian. This occurred again last evening and Joe expressed his displeasure in a letter which he read to Maeve upon her return:
"Dear Maeve Sophia Dempsey,
I am writing to you today to express my utmost and deepest disappointment and anger towards you and your decisions, regularly neglecting to either invite or perhaps forward an invitation to Killian and I to accompany yourself and one Kathleen Regina Shea to procure delicious frigid air products. I request your most immediate and expedient deliverance of an invitation, either from you or one Kathleen Shea, with the liable consequence of failure being the possibility of an abrupt termination of your sentient animation.
Your Deeply Offended Brother,
Joseph E. Dempsey"
Joe likes ice cream, I guess...
3) Maeve. Maeve obviously ignores her brothers' eloquent threats and is busy teaching an art class twice a week and babysitting on the weekends. Between times, she works on developing new looks for her and Faith.
She also had a pretty darn good freshman year (she's the one in the front middle in orange and blue):
4) Jack. At 12, he's finally realizing the full potential of his ability to sleep through any kind of chaos. Other than shooting hoops in the yard, he is spending epic amounts of time reading any book that Joe recommends and trying his hand at cooking meals for the family. He "moved up" from grade school to middle school last week and left behind a beloved teacher.
His boating skills are probably the best in our family, too.
5) Eamon. How do you know you're dealing with a Montessori kid who has never received homework? He's the child who is jumping up and down with joy over the "homework" his speech therapist assigned him to practice over the summer. (It's not "summoe" anymore; it's "summerrrrrrrr"!) He has also perfected his layup, slam dunk and 3 point shots.
He made his first communion at the end of April and every Sunday, when we walk to the car after mass, he says "I just feel so good now! I didn't know what I was missing!".
6) Faith. Nothing reminds me more of my own childhood summers than long hours spent hanging upside down off the couch and reading library books. Faith is having that kind of summer!! Her reading exploded this year and she's devouring chapter books with very little difficulty. She's also turning into a very mature young lady who asks big sister for fashion advice.
7) Will. As the oldest, I never fully realized the benefits the youngest reaps when all his siblings are present for most of the day. Will is almost never without someone to play with or read to him. He's also very good at making his likes/dislikes known ("KILLIAN! I am NOT Mr. Bing Bong!!!" Or "This is the best dinner EVER!!). It's really good for his older siblings to see him developing into a "big kid".