Open Letter To My Kids About Summer

Hey Kids,

Feel free to leave your stuff wherever you want this summer. Half drunk smoothies in the family room? No problem. I got it. Socks in the hall. I’m on it. Dishes in the sink? Keep ’em coming. Legos? Everywhere? Love it. Oh, and feel free to drag your blankets all over the house and abandon them the moment you no longer want them. I’ll fold them lovingly for you and return them to your rooms.

And doors? Shutting them is optional. I’m right behind you, so, seriously, don’t worry about it. I love when the wasps get in and the air conditioning gets out. Who are we to be sequestered in our climate controlled house? Open door policy in this house. We have endless money.

And it’s totally fine to leave your wet bathing suits and towels on any surface from the floor to the banister. I love heaps, but be creative! Oh, and putting them on painted wood surfaces is the best. I’ll grab them so they don’t warp the wood. You’re busy. Stop. Get back to your Netflix. Friends is not going to binge watch itself.

And let me know when you are hungry. Don’t be encumbered by normal meal times. And please don’t coordinate with each other. The kitchen is open 24/7 and I’m happy to whip up anything you need, whenever you need it. I majored in short order cooking.

And if you make something yourself, just leave every single item exactly where you last needed it. Milk, too. If it goes bad…I’ll just buy more. Money? Please. I’ll just work more. And I got the clean-up. I will walk in your footsteps and put things away. It’s fun for me to live vicariously through your cooking. Like, wow, how did they get so much shredded cheese on the counter? Impressive.

And every time you are thirsty…get a new glass. We have tons. And a dishwasher I love to load and unload. And, as far as I know, endless electricity and water. The world is our oyster.


And if something comes up with your friends? I’m in. I’ll drive you there or back, or hell, both. I mean, I have a car and a license. I should put it to good use. And please, no need to give me any advance notice. I can easily stop whatever I’m doing, even work, to take you. I know how valuable your time is. Need some money for the movies? You got it, kiddo.

And to the little one, when you feel like it, I’ll take you to the pool. Before we go, you can complain and squirm while I put on your sunscreen. Don’t hold back. Just be you. Express how you’re feeling. It is cold, isn’t it? I love the challenge of when you inch away slowly as I’m applying it. Good stretch for my arms and back. Kind of you to think of me.

And just one thing on goggles. I’m on it. Don’t bother to keep track of yours. I’ve made it my summer mission to know where your goggles are at all times (in the car…left side…wedged in between the seats). At night, I’m sleeping with them under my pillow. We can’t be too careful. How will you swim without them?

Just a few last minute housekeeping items: Eye rolling? Yes! I love the immediate feedback of my thoughts and ideas. How else can I gauge if I’m pleasing you or not? Showering? Optional. You know what’s best. I defer to you. Wearing a hat? No way. The more sun the better. Chores? Just tell me when it’s a good time for you. The weeds and messes aren’t going anywhere.

One last thing…please always wear your headphones so that you can’t hear me when I’m talking to you. Communication is totally overrated. Little known fact about me? I love yelling things at the top of my lungs three or four times with no response. It’s very cathartic. Look it up.

Well, call me crazy, but if you guys follow all of these guidelines, I think this summer is going to be a win for all of us.

Or if you don’t understand sarcasm, you won’t make it until July. Either way…

Love you guys.

The Default Parent
Meredith Trotta


  1. Michelle on July 3, 2019 at 7:52 pm

    It doesn’t get better with age. 18 year old I need black pants, tie, white shirt at 10 in the evening.. wait for it.. tomorrow morning. No problem..

    22 year old going through file cabinet, points for being practive, where are my immunization records, I need them to complete my paper work due.. you guessed it.. tomorrow morning…

  2. Early Childhood Education on February 20, 2019 at 9:53 pm

    Well, informative post. Sport is the best way of educating your children.

  3. Hana on July 3, 2016 at 9:39 pm

    So true and put it in a very simple way! I lived some of the comments too! I am from Lebanon and trust me kids are the same all over the world! Thanks for sharing this. Makes me feel I am not alone! Hahaha! Loved the shower bit too! Optional especially in the summer time! Mother of two- 9years old and 6 years old.

  4. Siobhan on June 23, 2016 at 9:05 pm

    All I can say is, my mother lived with us while my children were teens. And one time when I was losing my mind because my kids were being adolescents, she grinned and said, “I am so glad I lived long enough to see this.”

    I told her to go back to her room because she wasn’t helping. 😉

  5. Genny L. Brezina on June 2, 2016 at 4:55 pm

    Wait a minute. This is an open letter. Did you ever get a response? 🙂

    • M. on June 12, 2016 at 9:29 pm

      Ha! Lots of them. From my kids…indignation that I would ever write such a thing about them. As I told them, “What? The truth?” Hey, be better, I’ll write better stuff ;-). I also get lots of angry parents who think I’m a horrible mother because they don’t understand sarcasm, have no sense of humor, and are basically smug, judgy trolls! But mostly just lots of laughs and grateful parents for telling their blanket dragging, smoothie hardening summer struggles. Like I said in my interview with Sunrise in Australia…who wants a bunch of kids who act like 40 year olds and rinse their cups? They’re learning and someday they will tack this letter up for their kids to read! xo