camp, camps, summer vacation

Another School Year Finished

It’s hard to believe that our kids have just completed their six school year in Israel. The end of the year is always an exciting time and we wanted to make sure that the kids enjoyed a feeling of accomplishment. Since our kids all go to camp inside our yishuv – and two of them actually go to camp in the same classroom where they are all year – it’s not always easy to feel the transition. It’s great that we have such an easy transition from school to camp, but at the same time, it’s a bit funny since they don’t even fully notice the change!

As a result, we planned a few end-of-the-year activities for them to enjoy. Thursday, we went to the Bloomfield Science Museum in Jerusalem which is an amazing resource with oodles of hands-on activities.

Josh met us there from work and the kids had a great time at the water exhibit, the electricity exhibit, and more. We topped off the day at their favorite dinner location – Pinati. The kids love the food there and we always joke that it’s brought to the table before we order it. And really, it almost is! We only put 30 minutes on the meter and figured we’d get more coins inside the restaurant – and there we were sitting inside the car again after only 30 minutes, having already eaten a delicious meal for 7. Amazing.

On Friday, we headed to the movie theater to see Toy Story 3. I was thinking about this on the way and laughing at the differences between raising kids here and in the States. The movies really aren’t that big a deal – seeing a movie is a normal occurrence in the lives of most people, I would venture to guess. Here, however, it’s just not something we do more than about once a year with the kids (or by ourselves, for that matter!) Movies cost about 40 shekel (about $12) a piece and there aren’t matinee or kids’ prices. To take the four age-appropriate kids costs quite a lot of money, relative to our salaries. So, this was a large adventure for our children. They loved wearing the 3D glasses and had a lot of fun watching the movie. And….except for Eliav…they even managed to refrain from talking the whole time and to stay in their seats and enjoy. A miracle!

Today, camp started and they all headed out the door with their hats, their sunscreen, their snacks and their energy. No one has a major camp transition this year. Matan and Yehuda are going to a great camp organized by a few parents in the Yishuv. They can walk to it or ride their bikes each day and they should enjoy themselves and have many friends there. Amichai and Eliav actually have camp run through their schools. These camps are in the same rooms that they spent the entire year in – and they have some of the same teachers! So, they didn’t even blink as I brought them. The only transition is to get them to understand that they are actually in camp and that it’s not just a continuation of their school year! And, the baby has the same daycare he’s had all year until August 8th. The one adventure this month will be that the big kids are tasked with the job of picking up the little kids each day and walking home with them. I have to work later than their camp day runs – so we’ll see how that adventure goes!

So, that’s the story for this month. August is another story entirely – there are very few camp and daycare options for August and it can drive a working mother mad. But, we’ll get to that when we get to it.

Here’s wishing the kids a beautiful, peaceful and fun summer. They certainly deserve it after the work they did all year!

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