The Summer of Fun for DC1

At 13, DC1 isn’t old enough to volunteer yet, much less work.  Next year (hir Sophomore year) is Pre-Calculus so there’s not any obvious math class to take over the summer, and the high school offers fun classes like Psychology and Statistics and advanced programming and so on, so there’s not really a pressing need to take those either.  Driver’s ed is out.

Last summer and the summer before, zie went to all the engineering and programming camps, and even a philosophy camp.  Zie could go again, but… it doesn’t seem like there’s much value added.  We talked about a couple of away-math camps but one of them would take hir away for over a month and another is run by my least favorite math teacher from high school (it is a VERY small world), the one who on the first day of calc told us to open our books to the first page, read the chapter, and do some problems at the end of the chapter and then left.

So we asked DC1 what zie really wanted to do, because if zie didn’t come up with anything, it was going to be a summer of chores.  (DC1 doesn’t like expressing opinions, so we have to add a threat to get one– this also works with food options– if zie doesn’t suggest something we threaten Tomato Surprise.  I don’t think zie really believes us, but zie will venture an idea after we’ve gone through the motions.)  And zie said zie really wanted to go to a magic camp.

So we found a couple of magic camps– one for kids and one for people of all ages (one of us would have to spend a week in Vegas for that one).  The one for kids worked with our travel schedule.  It’s expensive, but in previous years there have been multiple STEM camps and this year there’s just the one, so the additional cost of travel is less than the cost of a second camp.

Then we’ll have two trips– one to Portland and one to a Midwestern resort town (these do exist) with the extended family.

And we plan to sign DC1 up for a week-long violin camp in driving distance.  Zie will also continue with hir regular violin and piano lessons.

Between the times, DC1 wants to try making magic videos, so there will be some video processing learning going on.  Zie also wants to spend more time on hir theremin.  Zie wants to start a magic club next year (only sophomores and older are allowed to start clubs), so there may be some planning for that as well.  And video games and a backlog of novels.  It will probably be a busy summer.  But hopefully a fun one.

Next year there may be volunteering or classes or month long math camps or other academically focused things.  But this year, just fun.

What are you and yours doing this summer?  Anything fun?  What was your favorite thing to do in summer as a child?

Posted in Uncategorized. Tags: . 16 Comments »

16 Responses to “The Summer of Fun for DC1”

  1. Michael N Nitabach Says:


  2. Ewan Says:

    Tannen’s? Our elder son went there last year and enjoyed greatly.

    And yeah, sign me up for philosophy camp. What engineering camp(s) did y’all use?

  3. SP Says:

    Not much fun planned this summer. I have some work travel, and we’ve kinda been on a hiatus from “just for fun” travel since LO showed up. LO is in year round care, so no concept of camps needed, luckily. (all for the small price of a billion dollars a month!)

    When I was young, I remember lots of enrichment activities and such. Language “camps”, school run extra math classes, plus the basic swimming lessons and day camps from the YMCA. And YMCA sleep away camp a few times. By high school, the only thing I remember is hanging out with friends and just relaxing at home until I was old enough for basic summer jobs (grocery store cashier, waitress). I was older for my grade (October bday), so I feel like I had a part-time summer job all through high school, but I couldn’t swear to it. At age 13, I have no idea what I was up to in the summers.

  4. bogart Says:

    Our summer plans are pretty routine, no big trips planned (we tend to take big trips in alternate summers, and last summer was a big trip summer), one smallish camping trip planned for the beginning and then a fairly routine list of camps, most sports-related. In principle, cousins show up in mid-July (TBD) and leave in mid-August, and we plan some small trips for while they are here and otherwise allow the kids to provide each other hours of free entertainment, but they are coming from abroad and one of the family group (the parent who’s an in-law) is not a U.S. citizen, which right now is leaving at least some of us wondering what travel options will be available/appropriate contingent on how the coronavirus unfolds.

  5. Middle class Says:

    I think my summer at age 13 consisted of sleeping in, Gilligans Island reruns, lots of library trips and reading, swim lessons and maybe one family trip. I can’t quite recall.

    Is it already time to sign up for summer camps?!? I no idea for my kids except summer school and swimming.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      Depends. A lot of away camps are doing sign-up now (and some started in December or January!)… which reminds me, I should check on that Orchestra camp again. Our local daycamps haven’t opened registration yet and probably won’t until April.

  6. becca Says:

    At 13 I can’t remember if I was doing my last year of Girl Scout camp (which consisted of The Worst Backpacking Trip Ever; it was supposed to be 9 miles but we got lost and it was 15 and we ran out of water. Ugh.), or my first year of hippie camp.

    My 10 yo will be going to Swanky University soccer camp again. We did it last year, when I was working there, and now he’s hooked. It is Not a good value in soccer camps. What we probably should have done is combine it with a family vacation to Kzoo and let him go to the soccer day camp there he loved so very much. Maybe we’ll still swing that. It’s the lack of time off that makes it tough now, not the money per se. Or maybe we’ll send him out to Southern California to stay with family. Though the weather is wretched. Why does summer vacation have to be in the summer??

    I don’t know what we’ll do for regular care at 10. I feel like he’s essentially able to stay on his own? But I’m not sure how I feel about all day every day, which will essentially mean all fortnite all the time.

  7. Cloud Says:

    My summers were mostly unstructured – my mom was a teacher so we just hung out at home and got together with friends. I remember a lot of reading and a lot of swimming. I went to sleep-away music camp twice and a sleep-away leadership camp once and that was it.

    My kids don’t have that option because both my husband and I work. Now that they’re getting old enough to largely take care of themselves, we might start having a week or two where we take turns working from home and the kids get to just hang out. Soon, our oldest will be old enough to stay home even if we aren’t home, too.

    But so far, it has mostly been day camps. We have a 10 week summer break. We usually take 2 weeks for family vacation, and the kids go to my parents for intensive spoiling for 1 or 2 weeks. So there are 6 weeks to find camps for. There is a STEAM camp they both love that covers 4 weeks. The other two weeks are usually at a camp offered by the YMCA, which is super convenient. But they’re getting a little old for those, so I’m not sure what will happen this year. I’ll be figuring that all out soon! In general, if I get things booked by spring break we can get whatever camps we want. After that, things start filling up.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      DC2 is probably going to spend most of this summer at the school’s daycamp which is like a YMCA camp. Zie also wants to do children’s museum, but not the science museum this year. Zie is getting to be kind of a difficult age because zie’s outgrown the little kids camps but isn’t old enough for the big kids camps.

  8. Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life Says:

    I did summer school a couple of times as a kid but I never did any kind of camp. We’re running out of worry-free summers with JB, so I really need to familiarize myself with what’s available and what’s affordable. I’m hiding from that a bit.

  9. Miser Mom Says:

    Aw, man! Now *I* want to go to magic camp this summer!

    I went to acting camps as a kid. Super helpful in my career as an educator, actually.

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