Covid Activities

I spent some time scrolling through previous summer blogs recently. I was amazed just how much we crammed into each day.

Covid has changed all that. No more beaches. No more water parks. No more playdates.

We have gone insular. The activities have gotten smaller.

Most days Adam and I try to get the kids out for some fresh air, sunshine, and activity, but it’s nothing like the adventures we used to have.

Most days it’s just a walk.

Palmisano (Henry) Park
Palmisano (Henry) Park
Swallow Cliff Woods steps
Swallow Cliff Woods
Walking around near Montrose Beach.
Walking around near Montrose Beach.
Montrose Bird Harbor
Northwestern University
Peninsula near Northwestern University
Painted rocks near Northwestern University

Sometimes we go biking.

MacArthur Forest Preserve. Old School loop.
Gravel is tough to ride on. Ben got six staples in his knee that evening.
After a hot day bike riding, we enjoy some Dairy Queen.
Biking By Lane Tech.
Biking the lake front.
Followed by more Dairy Queen!

And when all else fails, I try to channel my inner Jane Fonda and get the boys to workout at home.

Deck workout.

In a lot of ways, I appreciate this new way of being. It’s exhausting to try to top every summer with the next best summer ever. To scour the landscape for new and exciting things to do now that we have grown a year older, are taller, and can do more.

The kids are finally free to be bored. ‘Let your children be bored’ is one of the many pieces of advice I often see floating around the internet by various experts with regards to your children, isn’t it? Up to this point I’ve ignored it.

Although being bored resulted in too much screen time (‘limit screen time’ is another one of those pieces of advice floating around the internet by various experts that I have also ignored), it has also created a lot of creativity and interaction between the kids.

Jack and the twins did this to my hoodie footie.
The hoodie footie has gotten a lot of use this summer…
Pool noodle fight.
Sam’s army men make a comeback.
Sam and Jack hanging out.

Sam does the most with all this free time in the house, leading the charge in costumes and role play games, or just creating on his own. But even Ben, who complains of boredom the most, has started to draw again.

Petoskey Stones from our trip have been moved off the dining room table to make way for Ben’s drawings.
Ben also planted a garden this summer.

School starts soon, with three of the kids remote learning. It will mean less time for boredom for the kids, and less time for me to putz around and finish chores at my leisure.

In preparation for the remote learning, the kids are doing a typing course. The twins are memorizing their times tables as well. When I get their schedules, I will try to plan for some social distancing lessons they can do, like tennis or golf, to keep them active.

But for now, I’m planning on enjoying these last few weeks by cramming in as many books as I can read and binge watching as many shows as I can.

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