Monday, August 20, 2012

Savoring Summer

"Summer is the time when one sheds one's tensions with one's clothes, and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit.  A few of those days and you can become drunk with the belief that all's right with the world." 
-- Ada Louise Huxtable

Patrick flying a kite!

Who invented summer?  Who decided that school life should pause, that we need to be refueled and that a long unscheduled, glorious blank spot on the calendar should occur?

Can I kiss them?

Summer is such a sweet spot for me...such a golden time, that I always resist acknowledging the little sliver of golden leaves beginning their shake down and foretelling what must come in a few weeks: the end of leisure and schedule-free moments.

So filled with a full heart, from gobs and gobs of time together, I am savoring the summer and remembering my favorite bright spots.  Too many to count but here's a mini-scrapbook of my Top 10.

1) The gang's all here!  Yes...Jack came home and for a few months, he shed his cool college guy vibe and just became the big brother again.  I definitely wasn't the only one who enjoyed it. :)

2) BBQing at it's happier dad than John with Jack on the week-end teaching the young ObiWan the ways of the Jedi masters with some tongs.

3) Cousins, cousins and more cousins -- we got to have Lizzy all to ourselves for several days.  And if that wasn't good enough, we just had a whole host of spontaneous get togethers.  So fun!

Sweet baby Catherine Grace

Caroline and Lizzy...bubble girls!

The swimmers who wouldn't stop!

4) The first ever swim meet -- sometimes you never think it's going to happen.  You can't picture it.  You don't know what it looks like and so when you try to there is just a big black hole.  And then it happens and it all makes sense.  My favorite, favorite part of swimming: the focus on the personal best. For both Patrick and Caroline their first meet was a personal best, no doubt.

5) Unstructured time...Patrick and Caroline have delved into another layer of sibling hood.  They've become play partners like no other.  They have imaginary games that even the king himself, Jack, isn't allowed to join.  Sometimes I can follow along from another room, but most of the time the plot is too thick and the story too long.  But, it sure is fun to watch!

What, mom?  We're fine!

6) Watching Mary Kate travel with some kids from her high school to an entire other part of the world and grow and change and open her heart to the transformative power of travel -- meeting new people, learning about new cultures and sharing a bit of yourself along the way.

Mary Kate on the last day saying good-bye to her class.

Mary Kate's travel partners...enjoying time off!

7) The summer of 2012 will forever be remembered as the break out bike riding summer for Caroline and the summer of laughs with Junie B. Jones...Caroline's favorite thing to read and giggle about.  Most of our bike rides carried Junie B. Jones in my basket, along with a certain other friend, Teddy.

8) Summer means relaxing and having no where to go.  I'm grateful for the days when we didn't do anything we'll remember...a whole lot of nothing often adds up to something when it's summertime.

My personal teddy bear.

9) Moments of silence -- nobody rushing, nobody busy, just slowing down enough to see and hear the glorious life all around us.  So grateful for those quiet moments.

Nothing better.

10) I don't have a photo of the 10th favorite thing...but I've memorized it in my heart.  All six of us got to go to Sunsplash together.  Sunsplash is a waterpark with water slides, a "lazy river" that you ride on in innertubes and a wave area that is like a mini-beach.  Having Patrick be a strong enough swimmer to enjoy a full day of swimming and water adventures is a dream come true -- thank you Aquamonsters! His cousins, Chloe and Beau, came to show us how it's done.  It was a favorite day of Summer 2012 and one I know we will try to find a way to repeat on the hot days of 2013.

Today I am grateful for those beautiful months of long nights where even the sun wants to stay up, for time together and for the grace of unstructured time called summer.  So bittersweet to say good-bye.

"That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet." 
-- Emily Dickinson

1 comment:

  1. I love the sign. I love your reflections. And mostly, I LOVE summer too. There is nothing as sweet as summatime.