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July 20, 2013

Eight simple goals for summer

After a spastic end to the academic year, summer is finally here.

In honor of this enervating season, one that makes me simply want to swan around on the couch and eat ice cream, I’ve narrowed my goals for the next eight weeks to those that seem easy to accomplish.

Goal No. 1: Get the children to close the dang door when they enter or leave the house.

I’ve given up on getting them to stop tracking in mud and pine needles. I can live with the pine cones my daughter still insists on collecting cluttering up the back table. I’ve even given up on keep that back table clean enough to find my keys. All I’m focused on now is the door. Just reach behind you, children, and pull it shut.

Simple, yes? And yet I still find myself shouting the word “DOOR” over and over again each and every time they blithely leave it ajar.

Goal No. 2: Find out why the Girl’s hair always looks like it has never been brushed.

I watch her brush it. I look away for five seconds and it again looks like it has never known the touch of a grooming device. This is the summer I will get to the bottom of this mystery.

Goal No. 3: Torture the children by making them do things that aren’t a) playing computer games or b) watching YouTube videos.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m OK with a certain amount of mindless entertainment during the summer. I intend to rot my own brain with “Deadliest Catch” reruns. (Don’t judge.)

But I’d be failing as a parent if I didn’t occasionally make the kids put their mighty intellect to work. We used a recent road trip back from Cape Cod to force the Boy to do math. Each time he asked how much longer we’d be in the car, we used road signs to set up problems. If Albany is the next big city and it’s 65 miles away and we are at mile marker 128, approximately how much further will it be? And, since we have your attention, what is the velocity of an unladen swallow? You’ll find that funnier later, we assured him.

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