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  • Tara R.


Another summer milestone in the books! Not only did you survive the emotional roller coaster that is Visiting Day, but you did so in relentless, sweltering heat that could take down city power grids, let alone your Valery blowout. You tackled scavenger hunts disguised as wish lists - scouring cities and bandwidths to get just the right powdered Gatorade and colored gibbitz. You ate lobster rolls that had buns and mayo and everything. You saw everyone you ever knew from bygone eras in the lobby of your hotel that felt more like a fraternity party than a coastal oasis.

You came, you saw, you conquered. Well done. (Good news is -- it's over. Bad news is that despite walking 17,000 steps a day and shedding 8 pounds of water weight, you've gained 10 actual pounds of leftover Airheads and Baked by Melissa that didn't make the cut.) Now, rejoice!! It's the final countdown. While pre-camp was all about "lasts" for the kids, now it's all about the last hurrah for you, their beloved parents. Last fun trip to anywhere, last girls' night out, last sleep-in sans kids, last lazy, impromptu "where should we eat?" But, lest you fall too far from the good parenting-ledge, some things to keep in mind: (You can thank me later...) Schedules You all hate me for bringing this up again, but you've put this off for far too long. If you made your reservations for dinner in Portland for 2020, you can surely figure out if hebrew school is going to be on Mondays or Thursdays.

Downtime-Schmowntime Yes, your kids will need some time off. Yes, they will not have slept in 4 days, they will need a good snuggle and home-cooked meal, and yes, they will really need only a mother's love (read: elbow grease) to get their toenails looking vaguely human again. But then the grand homecoming will meet a standstill. Plan ahead or you might find yourself cavorting around like a trained chimp trying to keep them entertained, or even worse, shuttling them from whim to whim. Uber-mom, literally.

Doctor appointments Your son's books look unopened. Get his eyes checked? Your daughter's retainer looks like a mangled device you once saw Jack Bauer use. Better get her in to see some someone ASAP! No problem: How's mid-October? We have an opening at 11 am.

School supplies Just when you thought it was safe to stop shopping for supplies, you were wrong. New lists will be coming at you fast and furious, but at least these purchases won't take you further than Office Depot, give your child insulin resistance, and have a lifespan of greater than 24-hours-before-they-are-confiscated. Class lists You just figured out bunk logistics and now you need to wrap your head around another whammy of educational and social engineering. As you valiantly try to piece it all together, try to bring back the old you who did not heli-parent for 7 weeks. Try to recapture the freedom. And then start a whole new group chat...

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