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Old 05-14-2015, 09:39 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by dustman_stx View Post
That's my feeling, too. But it is very common. If you miss a game or practice you are considered to owe a "debt" to the team that must be worked off. I'm sure most of them would make allowances for something like a wedding or funeral. But camping with the family- or any other family activity for fun- wouldn't be on that short list of acceptable reasons to miss.
Those are the coaches that have somehow forgotten that youth sports are supposed to be first and foremost FUN.

The kids aren't being paid to be there. Very few of them will probably even play in college. Only about 1% will go pro. If they miss a game to spend time with their family, so be it. Especially considering how little vacation time most parents get these days.

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Old 05-14-2015, 12:52 PM   #22
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Well honestly we camped with them all over the east coast and Canada for 6 years. Then we sold the camper and when they were 12 and 14 flew to NM and rented an RV and did an amazing trip. That was the end for us until we were empty nested.

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Old 05-14-2015, 01:08 PM   #23
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Well, we're relatively new RVers, but we've been camping for a long time. I'll echo what others said about family time. I had to dig in my heels when my kids became resistant, but now they're 41, 39, and 34. Guess what... we still camp! My sons and I go several times a year for fly fishing. My daughter and son-in-law meet us at campgrounds with their RV. They don't remember their own resistance, and I don't remind them... In their own families, family time seems to trump everything else.

My oldest son was a pretty good baseball player. His coach told him that if he missed a practice to go camping with us (he was 17) that he'd be benched. I called the guy and explained that if he benched him, I wouldn't let him play anymore, including the next year. The coach relented. We camped, and Aaron played. Sometimes you just have to call a bullies bluff. Coaches like that are just that.... bullies.

Well, now we're grand parents... and can't wait to take on the whole lot...
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Old 05-14-2015, 01:15 PM   #24
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Thank you everyone for the wonderful stories.

My 17 yr old's primary sport is Basketball which is in the winter so that is usually not the problem. He runs XC in the fall to get in shape for basketball and runs Spring track to stay active and for me so he stays out of trouble (lol). At this point they are varsity level sports and they do require a serious commitment to practices and games. As XC and Track are basically walk on sports I am not too concerned about the coach retaliating for missing a practice. My son has the respect of the coaches and they are usually fine with him training while we are on vacation and trust him to do so. I am fine with that. If he has a meet, then I feel he should go as he committed to be there for the team.

His main focus is basketball and there are summer leagues that the varsity squad plays to sharpen and keep skills throughout the year. I feel he is obligated to attend these as you want him to continue to be a team player and be relevant so that he can retain his varsity spot.

The 13 year old is a few years off from this and I have no idea what his plans will be. He may find he really is not that into any particular sport. Not sure if I will allow that. I think keeping kids active and busy lessens the chances of trouble. Idle hands are a devils playground type of thing. He will have to do something. No way is he gonna play video games all day long.

AAU is a whole other kettle of fish. I do not put my kids in AAU because that is just nuts. Most AAU opportunities the 17 year old has requires an insane commitment of time and money. I will not let that dictate the budget nor time. But I feel school is different. High School is a time to find your way a bit. I want him involved in school activities while he has that opportunity (the same with college sans the competitive sports). I want him to make local friends, both boy and girl, and feel a part of the community. I want him engaged. I feel it will make him a more rounded individual.

So the above comments are beginning to come in conflict with what I agree is valuable family time. I do put my foot down for the one vacation that we make every year. It is a two week beach vacation to southern Maine that I have been visiting for over 40 years straight on the fourth of July week. It has become a tradition that I hope to pass on to them. It is those weekend trips that I like to take. With having a pop up, it is a bit too much work for a simple 2-nighter. I need another day so I can relax. As we all know, there are only 3 long weekends a year. All that with a typical vacation in August rounds out our typical camping year with 5 trips. Not a lot of trips when you stand back and look at it.

Ah the joys of being a parent.

Thank you again everyone, your comments are greatly appreciated.


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Old 05-14-2015, 01:32 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by vinmaker View Post

So the above comments are beginning to come in conflict with what I agree is valuable family time.

How so?
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Old 05-14-2015, 02:06 PM   #26
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I like what my parents did. All kids were required to go camping until they were 16. At 16, camping with the family was optional but none of the kids ever went family camping after their 16th birthday. Eventually my parents went camping by themselves.

The funny part of this story was when they had 4 kids camping and two adults, we camped in a big Sears tent. Then as the number of kids dwindled, my parents purchased popup campers. Once the final kid was out, a hard sided camper was purchased with bathroom. My parents continued to camp and eventually had a 35' bumper pull just for the two of them.

I'm 52 years old and you need to factor this into my story. As happy as us kids were to no longer go on family vacations, my parents were just as happy I'm sure to share time together. It was a different time back then though. Once the kids were exiting high school and certainly as they entered college, a parent's job was near complete if not complete. Not so true today. I know plenty of parents that treat their mid-20's children as children and not adults.
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Old 05-14-2015, 02:27 PM   #27
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After reading your post, I am so thankful my daughter loves to camp! She's 18 and a senior and will bail on signing up for things just so that she can go camping with us. It's tough with the conflicting schedules. But when it doesn't work with her schedule, she stays home. No need not to camp because of conflicting schedules! As long as their care is covered, think of it as a date camping trip instead with the spouse!

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Old 05-14-2015, 02:29 PM   #28
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We are first-generation RVers. When I was a kids, we did some camping in tents and did the Boy Scouts and my wife's family had a great camper at a lake in Maine.

Unfortunately, we didn't get our RV until after our kids were grown and married but, now, having fun introducing them all to camping and starting to bring the grandbabies with us, as they get older. (We have four adorable granddaughters...4, 2 1/2, 1 and 8 months.) One of my two daughters has two currently in diapers! Poor thing!
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Old 05-14-2015, 02:33 PM   #29
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I can say this we have two sons one is now 30 the other is 27 Both had their sports or band. But we still went camping even though it was somewhat less. Some because of them, some because of the DW & my jobs but we still went as much as we could. Fast forward to today we camp more now than we ever had (but not as much as we want) But guess what the kids still come the older one with his wife & our 2 year old grandson......... The other is still single........ The DW & I rarely can camp alone Enjoy them all you can life is too short...........


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Old 05-14-2015, 07:14 PM   #30
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Sounds like everybody is going to chime in on this one. So, I'll be different. First of all, IMHO many folks are misinformed about what sports do to kids. Remember, true character development is more important than academic or sports endeavors. Most inventors/achievers in American history weren't sports oriented. I have the wonderful fortune of having homeschooled all seven of our children. So, we are able to go any time any where. We make the trip an education in itself. Last year, we went on an 8 week 12,000 mile adventure around the western US...something our three youngest (12, 13 ,14) will never forget. It also gives us the great opportunity to go to the beaches, etc. without having to put up with string bikinis, wild youth, etc. etc. Often, we've gone to parks, monuments or natural wonders, where we've had much of it all to ourselves. I'm not preaching, just passionate about a great lifestyle.

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