So Summer has arrived and by now everyone should have heard the wailing lament of “I’m booooored!!!” about a hundred million times. You may have beached it, pooled it, library’d it and now are rocking in a corner, it. I wish I could lie to you and tell you that the transition from school to Summer is an easy one and that your kiddo’s will appreciate all your wonderfully creative ideas and plans that culminate in approximately four days worth of activities. They won’t. The first step of ending denial is to face reality. It’s all uphill from there.
Fact: Your kids don’t care. These are the same people who want to eat ice cream for breakfast. You are trying to please a moving orb of madness. I recently saw a quote that featured the blissful faces of two cherubs smiling up at the camera with pure joy. Then the words, “You only get 18 Summers; make them count.” ARE YOU KIDDING ME??!! Did the person who wrote this actually want me to start drinking at 8am??! Talk about pressure! Seriously. I think we should get credit for making a PB&J before nightfall.
So my sage advice: Take it easy on yourself Mom. There is no Love boat voyage departing. You don’t have to plan every moment in grand terms. Remember,“quiet time” in their rooms is how you will save yourself from jumping overboard. In the meantime, what kind of person would I be if I didn’t share some low key, low cost, nice diversion spots on the Seacoast that break up the day, are fun for both child and parent and don’t involve you screaming down a Water tunnel at some pee, um, I mean, water park. Hopefully this list will take some of pressure off making every second fanfreakintastic!!!
Sidewalk Farms: Take a walk one mile from downtown Portsmouth NH through quaint neighborhoods to find this wonderful “Urban farm.” See how owner Leslie Stevens has taken growing food locally in a small space to a new level. Come check out her chickens, working honey bee hive and worm composting on an intimate tour. Wonderfully informative, she has a greenhouse of her crops for sale–with a pay on your honor system. Up next, blueberries and raspberries, all organic and reasonably priced! Visit www.sidewalkfarms.com/my-service/ or call 603-427-1346 for details.
Located in downtown Portsmouth NH, this super cool “Harry Potter-ish” shop has everything to make kids and parents alike bring out the Oooooh and Ahhh! Owner Rita Fabbricatore (who dresses in turn of the century garb) has made the surroundings magical with her window displays and décor. From penny candy and retro toys to lavishly wonderful soaps and products imported from Italy you will get lost in the old time feel of this place. For information and hours visit www.pickwicksmercantile.com/
You are going to LOVE this place! Nestled in the heart of downtown Portsmouth, this wonderful little shop and garden will leave you needing to take an insulin shot for it’s sweetness factor. Owner Jen Almeida has created quite a gem. Beautifully renovated, this little cottage shop boasts local wares such as jewelry, paintings and unique gifts. It leads out to a gorgeously landscaped pocket sized garden with culinary herbs, plants and garden décor for sale. The kids will actually let you take a breath and look as they will be captivated by the charm of this spot as well. For information and hours contact: www.facebook.com/bluemossgarden or call 603-828-7652.
After perusing Blue Moss you will be in an enchanted daze and need some sustenance. Steps away and literally around the corner you will find the yummiest Smoothie joint on the planet. The kiddo’s will love the teeny-tiny shop and the friendly girls who will make your all natural smoothy, organic juice or organic vegetarian sushi wrap. Revive yourself in the hot Summer heat in a healthy way. A must stop! Check out www.juicery.com/ for hours and specials.
Napoli Market and Deli
You want to have a taste of Italy in the South end of Portsmouth NH don’t you?! Owner Terry Grant has brought it! Cute as Pie & newly renovated with chairs outside to watch the world go by, this place will leave you wanting more. Delicious deli offerings and the best damn Gluten-free chocolate cookies on the planet from local baker Fig Tree are always on hand. Even his Mama, Tina Napoli, joins in this family run business and will be in the kitchen making up her famous meatballs and eggplant. Take it to the beach or take something home- you are not cooking tonight!! For hours and specials call: 422-9660 or visit www.facebook.com/Napoli-Market-Deli
OK folks, that should give you a few non-hair pulling outings. Keep calm and may the force be with you! After all, you only get 18 Summers….
About the author: Andrea Ardito is a freelance writer and awesome Mother of three who has a handle on her children at all times; endlessly entertaining them with ease. At least that’s what she tells herself after her medication kicks in. You may view her blog at www.negativityisnotforannieoakly.blogspot.com.