I love summer.
It is, by far, my favorite season.
I love the long days, bare feet, pool parties. I love Popsicles on the porch and burgers on the grill. I love not having to keep track of my kids’ coats.
In the months of May and June we barely went anywhere. We didn’t go to the park, to the museum, we didn’t even take walks — I tried that once and we turned around at our neighbor’s driveway.
Some of it was legit. There are lots of things I couldn’t do. I couldn’t buckle carseats or stroller straps or puddle jumpers. And then there was everything else — things that were really, really hard. Like changing diapers, packing lunches, or tying shoes. All that stuff felt really overwhelming. But the clincher, the thing that kept me home EVEN MORE than the fact that I’d dropped showering to once a week and I couldn’t even do my own ponytail, EVEN MORE than embarrassing personal hygiene was that I didn’t trust myself to keep the kids safe. So we stayed home.
At first the days felt long, and even at home I felt exhausted and overwhelmed. Every morning I’d lay in bed and think, “Today I’ll just turn on the TV and pretend to forget to turn it off…”
But every day the kids naturally fell into play and pretend, and before I knew it we had established a slow summer routine at home.
I’ve written about this before, but I always love days when we stay homes. Before kids I wasn’t like that; I loved going out and staying busy. But now I have to rally for a week full of outings and playdates. I think it’s because that’s how I was raised, so it’s how I picture childhood. We didn’t have outings three times a week; we stayed home, made cookies, played in the yard, ate all three meals at the table.
My thumb is still healing and I’m still pregnant, but in the past few weeks I’ve felt confident enough to venture out. But I’ll be honest, I love the routine we’ve created. In the next few months we’re going to be really, really busy. David will start school this fall and soon after Mary Virginia and I will be spending all day sitting on the couch nursing our babies. “A mother’s work is never done,” Mary Virginia will be muttering under her breath…
Before all that busyness and change comes, I’m thankful for this, a sort of silver lining of my injury.
I haven’t taken many pictures this summer because, whelp (HEEEEEEEERE IT COMES AGAIN!), holding a big DSLR is hard to do one-handed. Here are just a few. (Not pictured? Lots of digging, throwing around couch cushions, Play-Doh, sidewalk chalk, fighting, and the acrylic paint I can’t get off my dining room table.)
Reading (and art!) in pajamas.
Since my kids want to swim and I couldn’t, I had to get creative with the water table. We filled it with bubbles and shaving cream, and anything else I could think of.
See! It’s exactly like a pool, kids!
Bubbles! I made our own with this recipe.
Add just a liiiiiiiittle shaving cream and suddenly the slide is so fast that Thomas won’t get close to it except to spray his siblings.
And this! In honor of my biggest accomplishment this summer, being featured by Average Parent Problems — an Instagram account that’s part of Mommy Shorts.
The original photo. (It was actually all Mary Virginia’s fault, David was inside drawing the whole time. But the crop is so hilarious I don’t even care.)