We may have started our fall home school routine last week, but that doesn’t mean summer is over. We’re still in the thick of it; the air is beginning to smell hot and stale, and we realistically still have two months of summer ahead. Naturally my favorite season tends to be the next one, but I’m trying to make my favorite season always be the current one. So, instead of looking ahead to fall, I’m trying to enjoy summer for what it is, and pull as much out of it as we can. Currently, my late summer includes:
Walking…I’ve been walking every evening up and down our little street. When we first moved into our house, I loved our house, our yard, the woods behind our house, but I didn’t particularly like our street. Once I started walking it regularly, though, I’ve really grown to love it, and the people have become familiar neighbors who I have little chats with about their pets and their trees, and it’s become one of my favorite ways to end the day. There are 27 houses on our street, and getting to know the people in them one small conversation at a time makes the world feel a little friendlier and safer. My goal this pregnancy has been to walk 5 miles a day (about 10,000 steps) and for the first time ever, I actually lost a pound during pregnancy. (That wasn’t the goal, and never should be unless it’s something a doctor has recommended, but I began this pregnancy heavier than any of my others. I’ve only ever seen the scale go up during pregnancies, so it was a surprise!) It gets harder and harder to stay motivated to move while pregnant, so making it a habit not based on how I feel each day, helps me keep going even on days I don’t want to walk. And most days I feel better once I have gone out and exercised because that’s often what exercise does!
Baking…One of my resolutions this year was to bake less to make my life simplier, but then I remembered I love baking, so I’ve been enjoying it more again. This summer I made my first batch of hot rolls that made our entire house smell like grandma’s house, which I decided I needed to do more often. The kids all love to take turns helping me, and even though it’s sometimes hard to let them help, I try to always let somebody put on an apron and be my little helper. They’re learning while they’re young and interested in helping so that when they’re older and don’t jump at the chance to be near whatever I’m doing, they’ll already know how to do things in the kitchen. The girls are already volunteering to make things by themselves, and while I’m not quite ready to let them loose alone with a recipe (they’re 6 & 8), I’m excited for the day when they can stretch their independence and accomplish a meal without me!
Cold Suppers…Sometimes when it’s so hot outside, a hot meal is too much. Sandwiches, wraps, and noodle salads are refreshing when it’s feels too hot to eat anything warm. We’ve been having BLT wraps with fresh tomatoes from the farmers’ market every Saturday, and it’s become a tradition we look forward to all week!
Book gathering…I’m slowly working through one book the past couple months, but I really don’t read very much in the summer. I’ve been stacking up a few on a special corner of the shelf for fall/winter when the longer hours of darkness welcome long books. It’s not that I don’t have time in the summer, I just don’t feel as interested in reading when the sun is out and there are things to do outside.
Praying…finally, we have been praying through some things over the past few months, and it has been a defining aspect of our summer. It’s funny how we naturally want to follow our feelings and make quick decisions, but wisdom often tells us to wait, make decisions slowly, and not be quick to decide things we might regret later. I’m thankful for a husband that encourages slow, prayerful decision making; waiting until we are in perfect agreement on things can take time we would rather not spend waiting in an unknown, but we know it will make the end result sweeter because we were 100% together in it.
What about you? Does summer end when school starts, or do you let summer stretch until the weather agrees it’s time for a change of seasons?