I meant to post this awhile ago but of course like everything else, it gets posted in its own time. Summer camp you guys...wow. From losing an entire days worth of clothing to coming home happily worn out at the end of every day, it was quite the adventure.
Emma’s last day at her preschool that we all adored was the last day in June. I will be honest, I cried, a lot. I could barely get out a goodbye to her teachers. Emma of course was fine. She is way more courageous and is far more emotionally stable in certain situations than I am. She did have a hard time going into camp the first day. I expected as much and stayed with her for a while. Unlike her preschool, where I had attended many events and had a general knowledge of how things were run, camp was a complete mystery to me. Other than reading the newsletter, I had no knowledge of what happened during the day. The first day I picked her up, I was smacked in the face with the reality that we weren’t in our safe preschool bubble any more. Her towel was on the ground along with her lunch box that looked like it had been scavenged by wild raccoons. She got a hard lesson in being responsible for her belongings (which she never completely caught onto). The worst was when I picked her up one day only to find her wearing the backup outfit I left in her backpack. Yes, that’s right, she lost an entire days worth of clothing including her shoes! The kids went to the pool every day so Emma had to change out of her bathing suit and apparently somewhere in between lost all of her clothing and her shoes. I searched high and low, all over camp. We both came to the conclusion that some other kid must have taken her things home with them, although I can’t imagine someone wanting her ratty old tennis shoes (and yes I reluctantly bought another pair accompanied with many lectures on not losing them).
The other thing I had not considered about camp was the fact that there would be much older kids there, all the way up to middle school. So we had a lot of talks about good and bad behaviors and not to do something just because everyone else was doing it. In a way I’m glad we got those discussions out of the way before she starts school. All in all, she picked up more confidence and grit from the experience which is a good thing.
The wonderful thing was that every day I went to pick her up, she always had the biggest smile on her face. Every day she would exclaim that she had “the best time”! This made me feel really good. It showed me she was ready for something new and thrived in the camp environment. They had a variety of physical activities throughout the day along with cooking and arts and crafts. I know she hasn’t figured it out yet but she has athletic talent. I am not pushing anything on her now or ever but I was glad she enjoyed all of the activities. I really would like for her to participate in some academic camps next year but we’ll see how the school year goes. All in all, I’m glad she was able to have that childhood experience and enjoy it. I wish I had taken a picture of her there to share but I am fairly certain we will get another chance next year.