Summer Time

Inspirations from a friend on Facebook in West Michigan

It’s summer time at my house–for sure! All three kids are finished with school and we are transitioning into a new schedule (I use that term lightly as it’s not very schedule-y). I really enjoy having everyone back at home even if it does mean a little more work for me to manage the messes (Who needs to take care of their breakfast mess?), the shuttling (Can I go to so-and-so’s?), the individual plans (VBS for one, soccer for another, movie with friends for another), etc.

The summer can really get away from us if we don’t take a stab at being intentional–an oxymoron, maybe, but better to take a stab at intentionality rather than avoid it altogether, right? We were in the car the other day and brainstormed a random list of things each one of us wants to make happen this summer. I’m seeing it on friends’ Facebook pages, too. It’s too long of a time not to have some plans and it’s too short of a time to let go without making the most of it. Here are some big picture ideas as well as everyday, small ideas that can help to make space for memory making.

  • Vacation Lots of families plan big vacations around fun destinations, family reunions or family visits, but vacation doesn’t have to mean big and expensive. There is something magical about getting out of town–away from the laundry, away from the office, just AWAY! Somebody has been offering their cabin/timeshare/beach house to you and you just need to say, YES! You get one of those Groupons or Living Social deals in your inbox everyday and maybe you just need to click “buy it” for the resort hotel across town and make a vacation out of that. Yes, there’s the prep work, the packing, the arrangements on the front end, but the return on your investment of time and money is well worth it in the form of experiences, memories and pictures.
  • Summer Barbecue You’ve been meaning to have a half dozen different families over, but life just doesn’t stop to give you a moment to make a plan. Summer was made for this! Whether you’re the hostess-with-the-mostess or more of a burgers and ‘dogs kind of gal, the get-together is the point of it all. Start with picking a date, make it late afternoon so that it’s post-naps, but still plenty of time to hang out before bed time.I love the “we’ll provide the meat and drinks, please bring a dish to pass” version.Hose down the tables and patio, set out some bubbles for the kids and BOOM! You’ve got yourself a BBQ!
  • Pool Day If you have a pool, extend an standing invitation to your friends like, “Tuesday is PoolDay! 10-1!” If you don’t have a pool, make a regular thing about going to the community pool on the same day every week. Kids love looking forward to a day where they’ll get to play with you and their friends.
  • Library Day¬† Let me tell you, you might as well get familiar with your local library and regular home DEAR(Drop Everything And Read) times because every stage of development involves the importance of reading, teachers want your school-age children to keep reading over summer, and your brain could use a little language arts development, too! Which brings me to my next point:
  • Quiet Time Whether it’s early in the morning, during baby’s nap time or a run or yoga in the evening; you need to make some space for a quiet time. This is YOUR time where you stop, listen, breathe, think. Leave your phone in another room (for all of us clicking-junkies out there), but take a notepad with you so that as your mind slows down and you inevitably think of “need paper towels” or “water the roses” or “register for Kindermusik (wink-wink)” you can put it on the paper and take it off your mind. Maybe this is where you read. Maybe this is where you just sit and be. Maybe this is where you pray. I’m sure you’ll think of something to do and I’m sure you’ll be better for it. You need it and no one can or will do it for you, so take it!

This post brought to you by Jenny Leggett who is now going to read this post and apply it to herself, accordingly.

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