This week’s intention is Make More Memories.
Last summer, I barely had a minute to enjoy the times we had together.
I did things. I spent time with the family. But it was all very rushed. There was a lot of stress last summer, of course. That stress has changed to new stress this year. Now, instead of my husband being unemployed, he’s commuting 2.5 hours a day. That means I will be treking the kids across town to summer camp and picking them up again — all while working full-time.
I feel the push and pull of the summer months and busy days already, like weights around my ankles. The weekends are already filling fast, fast, fast. Much like our spring bucket list, I want to make sure I make the most of summer, that I practice the mindfulness that is so important to how we raise our children — with our eyes and hearts wide open.
I’m worried I’ll miss another summer season rushing around.
So I’m making plans to have the most Awake summer I’ve had in a long, long time. I want to Wake Up each day and know that I’m in the middle of summer.
How, though? How is this even possible?
Planning ahead. And less expectations of myself and summer itself. First, you must ask yourself what summer means to you. Your answer may differ from mine. Summer means lazy days, swimming and enjoying all of my favorite foods and drinks — all while spending as little time inside as possible. Write your own answer using the following for inspiration.
Here are 6 Ways to a Sensational Summer:
MEALS: I’ve already selected what we’re eating this summer. I sat down with a notebook and wrote a list of all our favorite summery meals. The best summer desserts. Fresh fruit musts. Barbecue fooods. I plan to only grill or use the crockpot most of the time because I do not want to stand over the stove when I could be outside. I don’t want to get to the end of summer and realize I forgot to make homemade ice cream as often as possible.
CREATE A PLAN: We will resume our home learning this summer to keep the kids brains’ sharp. I haven’t done much home education since they began Kindergarten so I’m excited to do this again this summer. We’ve created a plan for Monday through Friday and I will have it all planned out before the end of the school year. It will be fun, of course, and less like school and more like summer camp. The kids helped create the list of what we’ll do this summer to keep learning fun. Of course, this is whole-family learning at our house, not just for the children. We’ll all be involved.
ENJOY THE SUMMER: Stop and take deep breaths. Go outside often. Sip tea on the porch. Watch a sun set and a sun rise. Stare up at the moon with my arms open wide. Dance. Feel every moment possible. Taste the summer as if its fresh from a tree.
DAILY WONDER: I plan to take a 15 minute daily wonder time-out for myself. It will probably include a lot of sitting on the patio or the front porch or on the side of the pool with my feet soaking. It will be outside or near a breezy window. It may even be sitting outside under the porch roof, listening to the rain. It will involve appreciation and gratitude to the amazing people in our life. It will include listening to what the stars are telling me.
PUT LOVE FIRST: For the first time ever, my husband and I are making our summer bucket list in addition to the one we have as a family. We’ll do simple, easy and fun things each week, probably after the girls go to sleep. Things like make Sangria, swim after dark and make a summer playlist. I’ll share our family’s bucket lists later this week.
RELAX: For children, summer is about no school and just being themselves. The great things about summer are, indeed, magical — simply because children make them so. To truly have a sensational summer, we need to relax the rules, invite curiosity and wonder into our lives and follow their lead. It might lead to a creek to wade your feet. It might lead to a night of catching lightning bugs. It might lead to sitting in a tent in the backyard, reading and giggling. Whatever it is …. let the children decide and magic will follow.
How about you? What does summer mean to you?