In the middle of it all, we got a call from Roo's school that the local Rotary Camp (a camp for kids with special needs)--which happens to meet at his school--had an opening after a student dropped out, and they offered it to Roo. It is free.of.charge. Transportation is included. The only downside? It is Monday - Friday, 9 AM - 3 PM (no naps), for SIX WEEKS. Did I say that was a downside? ;-) Seriously, it is exciting to have the opportunity, but that is a lot for a little guy. He missed the first week because the other student dropped out partway through, and then we went on vacation; but he joined in last week, and is back again this week. He is completely bushed, but he seems to be loving it.
So Roo is gone during the day... and now this week, my sweet Monkey is at church camp (during the day) too! (Last year the big kids went to camp at the same time, to make life easier for Mama. This year, though, Lamb is going to SLEEPAWAY CAMP! For real! And the way the schedule worked out, it was better to send them on separate weeks.) So all week long, from 9 AM until 3 PM, it has been just me and my girl.
On Monday we did some boring stuff (grocery shopping, laundry, etc), but then hit the library and went swimming at a friend's house. On Tuesday she gathered up some spending money, and we went shopping. You've gotta cover the basics, you know.
Yesterday was the second in our series of 8 mother-daughter dates in the Secret Keeper Girl series. (There are 2 books of dates. This is the one we are doing right now...)
A few weeks ago we went to a fancy tea house to have (of course) tea, and to remind Miss Lamb thatshe is a masterpiece created by God. Yesterday we had facials and talked about real physical beauty, and also proper skin care, since she is coming to the age where her skin will be changing. I had originally planned to take her to a spa to get facials for the two of us, but oh.my.word. My budget was not built for that kind of abuse. Instead, we called up a friend who sells Mary Kay, and she came to us. It turned out to be a great choice, because she could walk Lamb through the steps she needs to do to care for her skin--and Lamb said that she preferred putting everything on herself instead of "just laying there" while other people did it for her. (Whose child is she, anyway?!?)
And today we are wrapping up our girl time in one of our favorite spots: Starbucks. (Ready for some irony? Neither of us drinks coffee.) My hubby asked what we were up to today, and I told him, "We're going to drop Monkey off, drive straight to Starbucks, and stay until we have to get Roo off the bus--or until they kick us out, whichever comes first." And he gave me a look that said, "Why on earth would you do that?" But wisely he actually said, "Great! Have fun!"
No, we're not just sitting around watching the clock. We came armed with great ways to spend the time... books, notebooks, magazines, a Bible study that we are doing together, my laptop, and the best part...
board games. We brought Sorry, Skip Bo, a deck of cards, and, well, who knows what else is in my big Mary Poppins bag. It has been a great way to connect with my little mini-me.
Tomorrow Roo will be staying home from camp, since he is turning into a train wreck after days and days of no naps (and nights and nights of refusing to go to bed). Our girl time will be done. The laundry will need folding, the dishes will need washed, the carpets will need swept. But I do not regret one.single.minute of this week. Because yesterday she was a tiny little baby all swaddled up in my arms, and tomorrow she will be a mysterious and moody teenager, but today she is OK with--no, she craves--girl time with her mommy. And I am going to soak it up.
Library, swimming, shopping, facials, Starbucks. It's a girl thing.