I really did try. We intentionally keep the school year calm. I know the days are coming when our daughter might want to be super involved in all. of. it. We’re holding off on that for as long as we can. We come right after school most of the time and sit down to dinner together as a family that evening. Bedtime stays very consistent.
I wanted our summer to be calm as well. Long lazy mornings where she slept in and I had an extra cup of coffee. Think of all the reading and writing I could get done! A hundred days or so set to a relaxed rhythm. A wide open calendar. But here’s the thing. We don’t live near most of our family. I’ve lived in a lot of different places and stay in contact with friends from each locale. We like to take the camper out a few times each year. One by one, we selected a week or a long weekend to visit with different family and friends. Sometimes, they even come our way, which is fantastic!
In looking at our calendar for the next few months, summer vacation, it doesn’t look like a relaxing vacation at all.
We had the best of intentions.
When we’re not visiting with loved ones, our eight-year old is going to VBS, church camp, tennis camp and performing in community theater. She’s talked about all these things for months and I’m thankful she has the opportunity to participate. It’s just a lot.
Our summer doesn’t stretch out uneventful before us. We’re going to do some serious running around. So right now, today, I’m setting aside any expectations I have for summer. I’m trusting memories will be made every step of the way. That's right, I'm gonna' embrace the crazy. Here’s a few things we’ll make sure of, no matter where we are or who we’re with:
Bedtime will be flexible.
There are lightning bugs and butterflies to catch and marshmallows to roast. We’ll watch lots of sunsets and go to bed late.
Entertaining out-of-town guests doesn’t have to mean go go go.
It’s fun to do some sightseeing when you’re somewhere new, but I’m going to do my best to remember it’s more about being together. I want my time with family and friends to be relaxed. That means avoiding the beach on holidays, when you can spend as much time finding a place to park as you can parking your rear on the sand. Eating simple meals at home most days.
We’re gonna be outside a ton.
We have a garden growing right in the midst of all our plans. Our daughter planted strawberry plants this year. We’ve got loads of wildflowers to pick and display in vases. Long walks and good conversation. Kites to fly. Dutch oven meals to cook (and devour). Summer is too precious to spend it indoors. Screen time will be very limited.
The reality is sometimes life isn’t going to be calm. We have to fit calm moments in among the crazy. There are summer memories to be made! Campfires, visiting with friends and family on various porches and making sand castles at the beach. Doing her thing on the stage, swinging a tennis racket and hours in the car. Her childhood days won’t last forever. We’re going to live them BIG.