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Is Your Child Ready For Camp

call-karen-girl-(1).jpgDiligently plan the school year AND the summer.  And let them go!

Posted: 2/9/2018 7:02:33 PM

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Full Summer Camping-The Best!

Summer lasts for 3 months…  And letting go of your babies for what feels like the whole summer can be scary the first time.  52 days is a typical full summer camp and that is just not happening (says many the first year)…..
So here is what probably goes on once they leave and you have only committed to a half summer.

Posted: 11/30/2016 3:50:09 PM

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Summer – Research Now

It’s only October and I am already getting calls of panic from parents who believe their opportunity for summer camp for 2014 has already past.  And guess what?  There are several full summer camps that are already filled for the summer of 2014.  And if full summer camping is the type of experience you want for your children, you really should be staring your research with an open mind as to where, if 2014 is the goal.  And yet, there are still so many camps and experiences available… but you have to be in the know.

Posted: 11/28/2016 5:19:22 PM

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Top 5 Discoveries at Camp

Spring break is over and the kids are “happily” back in school (wink wink).  Vacation was great but wow….  whirlwind ran through the house and the return to routine is okay.  And now you can take a few moments to realize there are only 9 weeks till the end of school (in South Florida at least).  One grading period, and the kids are home for the summer.  And if you have not yet made plans — vacation, camp, teen programming, older kids in jobs — now now now is the time!!!!

Posted: 11/28/2016 2:36:49 PM

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Want to Tour Camps for 2018 Summers

To tour or not to tour?  That is the question.  Your friends in NY, NJ, PA and MA spend the summer before they send their kids to camp visiting a series of pre-selected camps.  They pack up the car with provisions for two days and take the kids to camps within 4 hours of driving.  Which camp will be their future summer home??  It is a natural course of  business.

Posted: 11/24/2016 4:49:54 PM

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Scared to send your kids to camp?

I just watched Meatballs — yes, the goofy camp movie with Bill Murray.  A classic for sure.  But the message was right on.  Rudy, the little guy who arrives at camp and clearly does not fit in spends the first day or so as an outcast and runs away from camp.  Bill Murray tracks him down at the local diner, and over a milk shake and french fries, convinces him to come back to camp.  Over the course of the summer, due to“no parental intervention”, Rudy begins to develop  competence, confidence and independence.

Posted: 11/21/2016 3:13:33 PM

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More Than One Right

As I work every day, helping families find summer programs for their children, I do admit that the television is on in the background almost the entire day.  It drowns out the constant jack hammer sounds I hear as they resurface the pool and seawall outside.  So while listening, the much more famous “K” girl (Katie) is on TV interviewing people who are speaking my mantra.  Reid Wilson, PhD & Lynn Lyons, LICSW, spoke and wrote about Anxious Kids, Anxious Parents.  The kids are anxious about  getting into schools and the kids have learned a myth about devoting their lives to “one path to success”.

Posted: 11/15/2016 5:02:14 PM

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Doing your homework

There is so much information on the internet that you really begin to question what is real and what is not so real.    For example, my son recently hired a moving company to move a small amount of furniture from Aventura to Ft. Lauderdale.  The company received all the necessary stars, on line, to indicate that they were a reputable moving company.  He SMARTLY put the deposit on a credit card.  He took a day off from work and had to make the move during a small window of time to accommodate the rules and regs of two condo associations.  Needless to say, they never showed up.  He did receive his deposit back, but he was definitely “taken” by the on line credentials.

Posted: 11/13/2016 5:10:28 PM

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What is your sideline behavior?

Are you the coach?  The motivator?  The task master?  The one who brings the goodies?  Do you want everyone to participate?  Do you want the kids to win?  Did you play the sport and reliving or rewriting through your child?
Who are you on the sidelines?  What is your sideline behavior?

Posted: 11/4/2016 4:42:44 PM

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October Means Summer

YOU ARE NOT TOO LATE!!!!!  OK.  So the buzz is that you have waited too long, any camp that still has space is not a real good one, and you feel terrible because you missed the window again.  You want the best for your kids, you definitely don’t want to settle and yet they are getting older and really should be going to camp already.

Posted: 10/22/2016 5:15:09 PM

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Top 10 Questions for Camp Director

The Camp Directors and Owners are flying around the country meeting and greeting potential campers and families this month.  They are very busy, and ready to present the picture of their camp to you and your children.  But you need to be armed with the right type of questions to make sure that you find the perfect camp for your child and family.

Posted: 10/3/2016 4:34:02 PM

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Camp – With/Without A Friend

When your child goes off to camp without a hometown friend, they may be uncomfortable for the first 20 minutes. The unknown of their new summer home can be overwhelming.  And yet, with proper selection and preparation, those 20 minutes will be exciting rather than scary.

Posted: 9/29/2016 12:00:00 AM

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What can you fit in the summer 2017?

Every summer, we get about 10 1/2 weeks to plan for the kids and the family.  I for one, was never in the “mommy camp” mindset.  Keeping three boys home for an entire summer would crush me.  Sorry!  Not only would I have grayed prematurely, but the cost of entertaining three kids (and often times, friends) would have been overwhelming.  I was always creative with things to do at lower prices, but 10 1/2 weeks is a lot of planning.

Posted: 9/23/2016 3:47:17 PM

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9 Steps to the Right Camp

Nine  good questions to ask to find the right camp experience for your child and family.  One question not to ask — where does the neighbor’s child go.

Posted: 9/16/2016 5:22:54 PM

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Let Your Child Grow Beyond You

As you know by now, I am a complete and firm believer in the value of the right summer camp experience.  I believe as a parent, you provide strong roots at home that represent your character and desire for your children as they enter into society.  And by sending your child to the right camp, especially when they are away for the whole summer, you are giving them the wings to confidently practice what they have been taught at home.

Posted: 8/9/2016 3:53:44 PM

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Imagine…. Summer experiences

I have read many articles about the benefits, drawbacks, failures and successes of summer camp experiences for children.  Some simply identify the cost as being the one and only reason to deny a child from a unique and independent experience.

Posted: 8/7/2016 5:26:06 PM

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Will they go back to the same camp?

Some of the kids are home, and some are expected in a week to ten days.  The summer has flown by and it is already time to get school supplies, uniforms, and finally get to the reading list that was never started.

Posted: 8/4/2016 4:46:43 PM

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Full Summer Camps – Better Option?

Visiting day is over and/or right around the corner.  And for many, visiting day is the center of summer.  For those who have sent their kids to sleepaway camp for a half session, tell me if this sounds right….
 

Posted: 7/21/2016 4:52:54 PM

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“Special” Summers

As I travel every summer visiting traditional camps and various summer programs, I really get a chance to see the marvelous people who deal with all types of children and their needs.  This current trip is dedicated to more specialized programs …. the ones that your neighbor may not have heard of…. Camps for kids with ADHD, Autism Spectrum, and Other Socialization Challenges

Posted: 7/2/2016 4:55:57 PM

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Refresh Refresh

All of a sudden, you have some free time.  The endless hours of childcare don’t exist right now because the kids have left for sleepaway camp.  You have a list of projects you are thinking about tackling while they are gone.  But, you just can’t seem to step away from the computer.

Posted: 6/30/2016 7:29:57 PM

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Mass-aaaaaa-ge!

The close of school is just a few days away.  Everyone is feeling the pressure.  Finals, ceremonies, duffle bag packing but the  most stressful for most is indecision….

Indecision as to what is going to happen when June 6th occurs and the school year is over.  OMG!!
I have spoken with every kind of mom and dad in the past few weeks. 

Posted: 5/30/2016 6:05:10 PM

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Spinning in Circles?

Post-Spring Break is always a hectic time.  Great vacation time quickly turns into FCATs, Finals, AP exams, graduations, proms, awards ceremonies and before you know it, the first of June has arrived.  You are so busy with day to day activity that planning for the summer is so hard to even contemplate right now.

Posted: 4/11/2016 6:08:11 PM

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Special children get special camps

I often get calls from parents who start the dialogue with:  ”this is going to be a hard one for you, but I really need your help!”  They proceed to tell me about their child and how wonderful he or she is, bright, outgoing, loves animals, but….  and then there is the hesitancy and sometimes, the choked sentence follows.   He is somewhere on the spectrum and I really want him to learn to get along with others, be more independent, not get teased, just have fun….  I then follow with, “and you can use a break as well.”

Posted: 3/26/2016 6:11:21 PM

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Specialty vs General Camp

Over the past ten years, I have spoken to hundreds, maybe thousands of parents.  Typically, I speak to moms who either are the driver behind sending their children to camp or they are the implementer of the decision that both parents have made.  So here is a typical conversation.  My son, he is the oldest of three, is 9 years old and he is an amazing …..  fill in the blanks.  Let’s use tennis as the example because since I am a tennis player, it is easy to talk about, and familiar to many families.

Posted: 3/20/2016 7:12:12 PM

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You’re Not Too Late For Summer

Today is summer day, and the calls are consistent, frantic, and repetitive.  There is still space in sleep away camp, there are still teen programs that are not filled and you do not have to lose sleep over it.  So let’s check out reality.  

Posted: 3/6/2016 7:16:46 PM

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Is 13 too old to start camp?

I was a sleepaway camp counselor for many many years.  My favorite age was the 12, 13 and 14 year old campers.  They thought they knew EVERYTHING!!  It was great, exciting, fun, challenging and eye opening.  These kids seemed to know a lot more than I thought they should know.
And yet, they were well into their formative years.

Posted: 1/20/2016 4:58:28 PM

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The Gifting Season

For years, Chanukah was a big holiday filled with small basic presents each night ending with one biggie for my boys.  Underwear, socks, new pajamas, coupons to get out of dish washing or other chores…..  Always included money that had to be donated to charity of their choice.  We would do the research, make a selection of an organization for which they felt compassion, and send off the contribution in their name.

Posted: 12/2/2015 5:07:06 PM

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