Summertime, and the livin' is easy
Fish are jumpin'
And the cotton is high
I love the images this song conjures, but truth be told, they aren't really an accurate description of what summertime feels like at my house this year. Here is my personal rendition of Summertime:
Summertime, and our house feels crazy
Kids are jumpin'
Cause they're home all the time...
I'm not going to sugar coat things for you; my central goal this summer is to get my three naughty, cabin-fevered darlings out of the house as often as possible! Now that we're gradually climbing out of the mono-induced fog that's kept us home for weeks, we're ready to be outside. Let them destroy Mother Nature's furniture for a change! I want them to run around, ride their scooters, create masterpieces with sidewalk chalk, and in general spend a lot of time each day taking in the many wonderful scents of summertime.
Don't you think summertime is best experienced through our sense of smell?
Close your eyes and inhale the scent of chlorine, rootbeer flavored popsicles, sweaty kids, freshly cut grass, sun screen, campfires, and hot dogs! Some of my best childhood memories are tied to these smells and all it takes is one brief sniff for me to return to my nine year old self, like seasonal time travel. Oh, those were the days. Playing kick-the-can until dark. Going to the waterpark with cousins. Arguing with my mom about whether or not I could eat the whole twin popsicle instead of breaking it down the center and giving half to my sister. Opening my eyes in the ocean to look for fish, and then crying with my face in a towel for an hour afterward. Waking up to the sound of lawnmowers, and falling asleep to the sound of other children playing outside because their parents understood that darkness is not a good reason to be called into the house.
I hope my girls will grow up with the happy scent of summertime tucked into their memory. We have some great trips planned this summer, and for the lazy days in between I'm looking forward to letting them unroll as they will. As much as I love making plans, it's the uncluttered, under-scheduled, organic version of summer that often allows for the most honest and sincere forms of relaxation. But for those inevitable days when we've grown tired of riding scooters and catching rolypolies, here are some fun, inexpensive ideas to help you bring the spirit of summertime to your family:
- pizza at the park (our favorite Friday night tradition)
- community pool trips and swimming lessons
- vsits to the splash park
- nose bleed tickets to the Rockies baseball game
- barbecue time
- watermelon seed spitting contests
- participate in the summer reading program through the library
- hiking up in the mountains
- sight-seeing around your own city
What are you're favorite summertime activities?