Summer Starts:Six Flags today

The Summer of 2010 kicked off in high gear this week at our home this week. First week the kids are home and we are kicking off the summer by having an outing at Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ!

Past week has been very hectic with my “two graduates”.  I have my twin niece/nephew over and I’ve been getting a daily beating in Pool volleyball from the girls. Who would think that 2 on 1 volleyball in the pool would be this difficult to win against “tweens”.

Last night we went to Point Pleasant Beach boardwalk and beach to get our dosage of the crowds and the sand.  We went in the after 4:00 PM so the crowds had thinned out, so we were able to go see the masses leave as we were just entering.. We could have stayed longer on the beach, if we had remembered to bring a blanket and/or some beach chairs.  As my hero Homer Simpson would say: Doh!

Today should be interesting, as the national employee resource group that I’m a Veep for is hosting a barbecue at Six Flags in the afternoon. This should reduce the $200+ expense of food that normally occurs at Six Flags.

Of course Six flags is not just the cost of admission. When you add up Parking, Admission and “Flash Pass”  this can easily set you back $100 per person.

Tip of the Day: RetailmeNot has some great deals on how to reduce this cost.

Two “Graduates” in 2010

So this is the end of the school year for both my kids. Amazingly, both are taking the next step in both of their educational life in 2010.

One is graduating from High School and the younger one is “graduating” from the 5th grade to the 6th grade this fall.

My baby took me to her ceremony at her school yesterday and observed a truly touching ceremony for the 5th grade “graduates”. The school and the PTO put together a fantastic pictoral presentation of the kids as they progressed from Kindergarten to the 5th grade. A few kids made some excellent speeches. What I liked most was that every parent was given a wonderful flower as a gift from the school. Each child was given a “certificate of completion” and CD of the slide show that was presented.

Honestly, I was truly amazed at the difference these days compared to what I experienced in NYC when I progressed from the 6th grade to the 7th grade!

The presentation gives the kids a sense of accomplishment that was truly lacking when I was growing up in the public school system of NYC in Queens.

For many of us who were pre-teens in the early 70’s ,   it’s just a minor memory of going from the security of elementary schools to the perils of Junior High school (Grades 7 – 9).  Today’s kids have the opportunity to create  a long lasting “time capsule” of all their accomplishments during their steps through the educationaol system from kindergarten through high school graduation. I think this is fantastic! I’m kind of envious that we didn’t have this opportunity when we were growing up.

Of course my older one’s High School Graduation is within the next few weeks and her celebration started a few weeks ago with the Senior Prom. Even the Prom  was well orchestrated by the school. They made the kids sign a “contract” before they sold them any tickets to the prom. In addition, they actually took the kids by bus to the mall where they spent the night partying with their friends. The school system created a safe environment for the kids to celebrate. When I was growing up, I didn’t have the opportunity to go to my High School Prom. I guess that’s the result of being  so “uncool” when I was growing up!

I’m truly proud of both my kids for the steps they are taking this year in their education. One is leaving the security of  “High School life” and entering the independence of the college life. The other is expanding her horizons by leaving the structure of elementary school for the “chaos” of Middle School.

I wish both my girls success in their steps that they are taking this year. Of course what this means is that Dads taxi has less of one child to drive around and more of the other! I guess this is part of the growing up process for me as well!

Dad

OCI Update: Still waiting

So after my wife went to the embassy for the second time, we finally have submitted our “family” application for an OCI card from the Indian government. We have to figure out how to get back the extra $350 we payed for the surrender certifcate stamp.

I asked my wife to be a guest blogger to relate to everyone her experience, but thus far she’s has not obliged.

Next step is to escalate to get a refund of our $350… we will see if that happens