Life Lessons Summer Camp – Initial Thoughts

WOW Summer 2016 Edition

Yes, you read that right. This IS Words on Wednesday, but for the next nine weeks or so I am going to be bringing you into my world of summer with kids!  In a moment of what may turn out to be complete insanity, I decided to run my own summer camp for my girls in an attempt to teach them a few life skills sadly lacking in today’s society. Crazy right?

What kinds of life skills?

Glad you asked! Here’s my break down.

Week One – Travel

Week Two – Traveling etiquette and money matters

Week Three – Cleaning & Organizing

Week Four – Cooking

Week Five – Sewing

Week Six – Self Independence

Week Seven – Laundry

Week Eight – More Needlework (the girls are away at their grandparents this week but I am hoping to enlist Grandma to help teach them knitting and crocheting)

Week Nine – More Cooking

Ambitious? Probably! But if I can manage to keep my cool and keep the girls from tearing me apart trying to get to the cooking lessons, I think we will all learn valuable lessons this summer.

Want to see what Week One looks like so far?

(Here’s where the whole “words only posts” thing gets thrown out the window for the summer! Warning: long post with lots of photos so grab a drink and enjoy!)

I purchased duotangs for the girls from the Dollar Store. (For you non-Canadian readers, those are report covers with pliable metal prongs to keep hole punched papers in place.) I plan to decorate the covers but for now, here’s what they look like. Oh, and the girls were absolutely thrilled to get fancy duotangs! I kid you not!

Life Lessons Summer Camp Duotangs

Maybe it was just that they are in pretty colours. Or maybe my kids just love stationary supplies as much as I do. Who knows! Either way, I am thrilled that they are excited about this venture. Makes my job so much easier!

Week one Day One - inside peek

As we talk about different subjects related to travel, I am keeping things topical for them but using our upcoming Disney Cruise as a reference. They are so excited for the cruise so this makes it easy to keep their attention.

Well, … easier anyway!

DD3 thinking about what to write

There’s even some writing involved! On Day One we looked at planning your travel wardrobe. What kinds of clothes would they need to have with them? What other sorts of things would they need or want while they’re away from home? Those kinds of things. Disney has great packing lists that I referenced and then asked them to think if they had forgotten anything. And what on the lists would my husband and I be in charge of and what could go into their bags.

They really got into it! The older two were firing off suggestions while this little bit mostly tried to keep up!

DD2 & DD3 checking the weather in Alaska

Even though our lesson time was during the strict “no screens” time we insist on during the summer break, I still had them look up the weather forecast for Alaska. Mummy monitored computer time is always okay!

DD1 on her ipod looking up the weather

This one has the hardest time with the forced withdrawal from her iPod! She’s also too cool to use a PC! Pshaw!!

Once we’d established the weather forecast, we talked wardrobe planning. How many days were we going for? How many outfits would they need? And, would there be any shopping needing to be done before we left?

All in all, a successful day!

At least, that’s what I call  it when all three can’t wait to see what we’re going to learn about in Day Two!

Day Two was all about physically putting outfits together. There was a little fashion lesson which probably fell on some pretty deaf ears, but I had to try. How many times have I cringed as a child has left the house in brightly patterned leggings and an equally brightly patterned shirt of a completely different and non complimentary colour? Too many I tell you!

Here are a few of the outfits they chose.

Sometimes they modeled them for me!

Frozen and Mini Mouse were deemed perfect for a Disney Cruise!

Even though my middle daughter is usually an absolute clothes horse, she had the toughest time deciding on outfits. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised as being forced to make any sort of decision paralyzes her!

All in all, not too bad. Their choices will most likely need some tweaking once we start the packing lesson but for now I’ll let them stand.

And since they’d all received gift cards to Old Navy for their birthday’s (thank you Aunty C!) we went shopping! Each girl came home with new sandals and the oldest and youngest bought sun hats while the middle bought heart shaped aviators. She’s going to be so much trouble as a teenager!

Today was Day Three!

I had mentally prepared myself for crafting mayhem so dove right in as soon as possible. I love to craft but hate it when my kids craft. It’s the mess. I’m not good with other peoples messes! I’m sure I need a program for that or something!

I’d already made them autograph books for all the characters we will meet on board, so this project was to make their own travel journals. The idea being that they can write down all the exciting things they experience to share with friends, family, and teachers in September. The template is my own and it’s something I’ve already shared with you. I’m working on making it available for general purchase but as of right now it’s not. I’ll be sure to let you know when it’s available though. Are you on my email list? That’s the best way to be sure you don’t miss anything important from me. 🙂

creating the journal

First the girls got to raid my paper stash for a piece of 12×12″ patterned paper. Then we set about creating the journal covers.

decorating the cover

I’d cut out a few things with my Silhouette for them to use on the covers and also pulled out a ton of sticker sheets. Then I walked away because I find if I’m not “helping” they do better. They are more creative and each project ends up being more true to who they are and less true to my vision of what it should look like. Can you say “control freak”?

all finished

All finished and ready to add, and bind, the inside pages. This one belongs to my eldest.

all finished too

This one belongs to my youngest. It’s fantastic how different they all are!

planning the inside

Not part of my plan, but this one decided she needed more structure inside so added dates and places using our Disney planner for reference.

Yup. She’s my husbands daughter all right! Planner to the core!

perfect pocket

The pocket we created on the inside of the cover is a perfect spot to keep their autograph books safe! It’s almost like I planned it that way or something!

So that’s where we are at so far. I’m still alive but in serious need of a glass of wine! And they keep harping on me to bake cookies!

It might be a long summer!!

Next Wednesday we will be on board the boat but I will have a post scheduled that will include the next couple of travel lessons plus a sneak peek into the lessons we’ll be covering during the cruise. Because learning shouldn’t take a holiday!

Until then, have a great day! Talk soon!

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