Friday, August 12, 2011

Wrapping Up

Gosh, summer seems to last forever around here and yet be painfully short at the same time. I don't remember summers being like this when I was a kid. They seemed to stretch out forever. I was usually ready to go back to school. And I wasn't signed up for several camps with built in entertainment either. Somehow, I managed to entertain myself without turning on the TV all the time. I wonder how that happened.

So, the last couple of weeks of summer finally arrived with August. I was excited to take Smunch to baseball camp at the San Jose Giants' Municipal Stadium. He'd declared that he liked neither of the baseball camps he'd been to in previous summers, so I thought this one might be good for a change...and it would be a blast for him to get to play on the big field with stands and a PA system. Meanwhile, I sent Mam to cooking school for half a day each day. It didn't really give me a lot of time and it turned into even less time when Smunch got sick after just one day of baseball camp.

He made it to the first day and the last day and missed everything in between. What a bummer! Still, he was looking like a pro on the last day, when they got to play games and be announced over the PA system.He really enjoyed the camp. Hard to tell if that's because he missed two days or because it was a better experience for him. They gave us an evaluation of his skills. It fairly glowed with praise and said he stood out in his group. Maybe that was the big difference. In other camps he didn't stand out. But it turns out that many of the boys in San Jose had only played for a season or two. Smunch just finished his fifth. No matter. He had a good time. That's all that counts for me!

And although I took no pictures of Mam in her cute little cooking apron, she had a blast baking every morning. She even started asking to help in the kitchen all the time. Once in a while, I can even come up with something for her to do and that's pretty darned cute. Worth every penny, that camp.

The same week saw the end of swimming lessons for the summer. I feel like I can finally say with some confidence that the kids can swim. They may not look pretty doing it, but given a fall into a pool, they're not just going to give up and drown.And I was perversely pleased that the brother/sister pair they had lessons with was far more misbehaved and obnoxious than they were. After this summer, they've been taught all the strokes, they just need some polishing. O.K., so they still look like they're drowning if they're attempting to swim butterfly, but still... Smunch's freestyle was looking great and Mam's backstroke is coming along nicely The evening after Mam's last day of camp (Friday, where Smunch was done on Thursday), we took our last summer trip to AT&T Park. Smunch was not thrilled with the choice of games we'd made.The biggest fan in the world does not like to see his team lose and he figured that a game against the Phillies was a likely loss.

Mam, on the other hand, was thrilled that we decided to take her to a game this season.And although she enjoyed a hot dog and some cotton candy, she mostly reminded me why we don't take her to games. She's a real pain. Crawling on the ground, asking to go home, being bored out of her mind.

Of course, by the time the sixth inning rolled around, Smunch was asking to go home too. This almost never happens, but Jonathan Sanchez was pitching and doing a poor job of it. They were losing 8-2. We made him stick around a little longer. And what a great idea that was! The only redeeming value to the game, in the end, was getting to see a bench-clearing scrum initiated by Sanchez hitting Shane Victorino with a pitch and Victorino making like he was going to charge the mound.This lasted quite some time and was the most amusing part of an eventual 9-2 loss.

One more family vacation and then summer is just about over. Thank goodness. The fighting and boredom are both unbearable. Then again, so is homework...

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