Tuesday, July 22, 2014 09:27am
North Adams, MA now: 72 °   
Send news, tips, press releases and questions to info@iBerkshires.com
The Berkshires online guide to events, news and Berkshire County community information.
SIGN IN | REGISTER NOW   

Home About Archives RSS Feed
School Vacation on a Time Budget
By: Nichole Dupont On: 10:27PM / Monday December 27, 2010
Important
0
Interesting
0
Funny
0
Awesome
0
Infuriating
0
Ridiculous
0

SHEFFIELD, Mass. — If you are a parent of schoolage children right now, you are not only weathering the colossal blizzard of 2010, but you are also weathering the Christmas school vacation.

Don't worry, no need to hold back; we all have mixed feelings about this week of frozen entrapment, postholiday financial ruin and a few moments of actual relaxation. While this is far from the first school vacation that I've weathered, I am still scrambling to put together a fun week for my kids, while also keeping in mind that I do have to work (because who can really take a week off in this economy?) and my sanity is as crucial as the kids learning to relax into life a little bit.

School vacation doesn't have to be a winter trap.

"What about all of their new toys?" you ask. Yeah, what about them? They play with these in fits and spurts which often end in some kind of argument or competition. That said, it is a good idea to gently suggest which toys they could play with because it is entirely possible that they are overwhelmed.

For instance, today, while my son was wandering around aimlessly, I pointed toward his new microscope and slides and told him to draw what he saw. He got to look at blood and guts and then illustrate said guts with his new pencils. I got to stop looking at a bored little face.

And let's not forget sledding. We are a big fan of sledding down the hill at Monument Mountain Regional High School. It is a well-known spot and while some would argue that there are too many people, I like the idea of companionship, both child and adult. Especially if my 50-pound first-grader eats it at the bottom of the hill — one of those parents has to be a doctor, or a nurse, or a chiropractor at the very least.

You may hate sledding, but the key is to go prepared. Bring a big thermos of hot chocolate (homemade if you want, the recipe is usually on the side of the baking cocoa tin), some easy snacks such as chewy granola bars (the harder ones tend to turn into bricks in the cold), bananas, juice boxes for hydration's sake and some Christmas cookies, and wear a lot of layers. If you're cold before you even get there, of course you're not going to have fun.

Oh, and, wear boots with serious traction so that you can get back up the hill once you've slid down. Or so that you can run halfway down the hill to assist your child, who has been slipping and sliding on the ascent. Try also to go with friends and/or family. Sledding is the perfect cousin adventure.

If it isn't too cold or windy out, this might be a good week to take the kids on an easy hike or snowshoeing adventure. Nothing gung-ho, just a nice short trek through the woods where they can track animals and maybe even identify the tracks. A pre-tracking trip to the library for some informative books is a good idea. While you're there, browse through a magazine or two you’ve wanted to read while the kids play a game. Our library has a chess set, Connect Four and multiple jigsaw puzzles; basically enough to make a morning of it. Libraries also offer workshops and story times for different ages.

And on your way out, don't forget to peruse the DVDs because you know you will eventually have a movie night or two. This would be a perfect opportunity to make REAL popcorn in the pan. Just a thought.

There is actually a lot to do during the vacation. For me, as for most parents, it's a matter of time and money. Fortunately, many activities are free or very low cost; these are my kind of activities. Also, and I think this may be the most important of all, try to do one new thing this week. Could be anything; just something new.

I'm taking my kids to the oyster bar at Rubi's. It's $1.50 an oyster and I'm fairly certain it'll be something they remember for a while to come. Even if they hate the oysters!



Tags: School, Vacation, Ideas      
News Headlines
Berkshire Museum To Host Smithsonian Spark!Lab
Space Is Top Concern In Picking Pittsfield School Building Project
Adams Selectmen Put Residency Requirement in Administrator Ad
Major Demolition Nearly Complete for North Adams School Project
Nolan Strong, But Post 68 Loses in Legion Final
North Adams Second-Graders Drilled in Emergency Skills
Greylock Donates $5,000 to Northern Berkshire YMCA Sports Camp Program
Kimball Farms Earns Fourth Perfect Survey
WES Appoints Six New Faculty Members
Team of Rivals Excels at Bay State Games


Categories:
Culture (10)
History (3)
Museums (1)
Nature (5)
Real Estate (4)
Shopping (6)
Archives:
Tags:
Verizon Darryl's Birds Fire Station School Bartholomew's Cobble Vacation Rene Wendell Other Projectnorman Insects Lee Pittsfield Berkshire Great Survey Bakery Berkshire Humane Society Contest Service Barrington New Salt Great Barrington Bird Count Mountain Closing Karen Ideas Pink Brother Archives Lenox Celebrities Year's
Popular Entries:
The Last of the Insects
Schooled in Passion: Packer's "Women of Will" at Shake & Co.
New To Me: the Boho Exchange
Norman Rockwell Archive Goes Live Online
Could New Neighbors Be Wall Street Journal Heirs?
Late-Night Host Fallon Skis Butternut
Pittsfield Through the Lens
Is Verizon Making Good on Its Word?
Inside/Out not upside down
Third Thursday Feast
Recent Entries:
Schooled in Passion: Packer's "Women of Will" at Shake & Co.
A Place for Us: Re-Wear Brings Style to Sheffield
Richmond Still Looking For Town Clerk
The Last of the Insects
Is Verizon Making Good on Its Word?
Building Collapses in Great Barrington
Could New Neighbors Be Wall Street Journal Heirs?
Mother Nature is No Match for Cheese
Construct Running Out of Emergency Funds
Winter Breakdown at Ben's in Lee


View All
Second Grader Emergency Drill
The North Adams 21st Century Community Learning Center...
The GATHER-IN Festival
BFAIR Mini-Golf Fundraiser
Berkshire Family and Individual Resources held its annual...
Lanesborough Seeds of Harmony...
Bradly Farm in...
Hinsdale Block Party
The Hinsdale Fire Department hosted its annual block party...
Arrowhead Country Craft Fair
Arrowhead, Herman Melville's home in Pittsfield, is hosting...
Pittsfield's 3rd Thursday...
State Little League:...
Pittsfield South defeats Holden, 3-2, in the state...
Live On The Lake Concert
Greylock Band played at Burbank Park on Onota Lake in...
Summer Softball: Force vs....
Berkshire Force beat the Adams Thunder 27-7 at Russell...
Little League: Pittsfield N...
Saturday semi-final between Pittsfield North and Pittsfield...
The Pittsfield Suns
The Pittsfield Suns defeated the Seascoast Mavericks...
Babe Ruth Tourney: Pittsfield...
Pittsield scored nine runs in the first inning and beat...
BYP Networking at Ramblewild
The Berkshire Young Professionals were up in the air on...
Pittsfield South vs North...
Andrew Watkins hit a three-run home run and a double and...
Little League: Pittsfield vs...
Great Barrington won over Pittsfield - South 1-0 on...
Second Grader Emergency Drill
The North Adams 21st Century Community Learning Center...
The GATHER-IN Festival
BFAIR Mini-Golf Fundraiser
Berkshire Family and Individual Resources held its annual...
Lanesborough Seeds of Harmony...
Bradly Farm in...
Hinsdale Block Party
The Hinsdale Fire Department hosted its annual block party...
| Home | A & E | Business | Community News | Dining | Real Estate | Schools | Sports & Outdoors | Berkshires Weather | Weddings
Advertise | Recommend This Page | Help Contact Us | Privacy Policy| User Agreement
iBerkshires.com is owned and operated by: Boxcar Media 102 Main Street, North Adams, MA 01247 -- T. 413-663-3384 F.413-664-4251
© 2000 Boxcar Media LLC - All rights reserved