Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Making the Most of Summer...While It Lasts

All you autumn-lovers out there are probably counting down the days until cooler weather arrives, but I'm over here begging summer not to end. It always seems to go by too fast. As a kid, summer meant freedom: eating as much as I wanted, swimming until I was pruney all over, playing outside all day (and long after the fireflies came out), climbing trees, traipsing around my grandparents' and cousins' farms, and doing pretty much whatever I wanted. Even though I'm an adult now--and a mom, at that!--and all I really want to do these days is go to the bathroom alone, I still feel a sense of freedom during the summertime. Like I somehow have "permission" to put fun before work, because, after all, summer only lasts so long.

Funny enough though, at the same time I'm ready to just let loose, I'm also 10X more motivated to dive into new projects. Maybe it's the extra sunlight that's boosting my energy level, or having something fun to look forward to after the work's done. Regardless, summer is always my favorite season, because I finally get to do all the fun stuff I've been dreaming about all year long. And I feel productive no matter what I'm doing--whether I'm working in the garden, running through the sprinklers with the kids, or just relaxing outside on the front porch swing.

So even though some of you've already started school, it's not too late to make the most of these last few weeks of summer. Go swimming, take a picnic to the park, eat dinner outside...get outdoors and make some memories! To give you some inspiration, here's what we've been up to this summer, along with a few things we're still hoping to squeeze in.

  • Had a garage sale
  • Went to Ben's family reunion
  • Camped with the kids (at the reunion)
  • Put in a garden--our first since living here
It's kinda small...
  • Planted blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries
  • Went to camp with the teenage girls from my church
  • Hiked and swam in the famous Sawtooth Mountains
  • Painted the kitchen cabinets (well, not quite "done"...)
  • Floated the Boise River
  • Threw a sprinkler + splash party for Lydia's first birthday
  • Cleared out and donated all the old and outgrown clothes from our closets
  • Went swimming with friends (a few times)
  • Biked and hiked around Jenny Lake in the Grand Tetons outside Jackson Hole, WY
  • Saw the legendary Thousand Springs, an underground river flowing out of a mountain side
  • Hosted my best friend and her daughter for a couple weeks
  • Built a playground for the kids
How long does it take for the orange to fade?
  • Rode a carousel at the park
  • Visited the zoo
  • Spent an evening wading and splashing in the river
  • Roasted hot dogs and marshmallows over our fire pit
  • Played at the splash pad (done, done, done AND DONE!)
  • POPSICLES. Every. Single. Day. 

Still hoping to do:
  • Go camping with just our family--one of my goals this year (September counts?)
  • Have a date night with Ben at the water park (and ride all the slides!)
  • Invite the neighbors over for a BBQ
  • Swim and watch the surfers on the river (yep, you can surf on the river here...Boise's cool like that)
  • Plant grapes
  • Watch the hot air balloon festival
  • Spend a Saturday morning at the Farmer's Market downtown
  • Clean the carpets (We learned the hard way, it's best to do this while the weather's still warm so you don't freeze with the windows open for 2 days straight.)

BONUS! Plans for next summer:
  • Go white water rafting
  • Plant a plum tree and roses
  • Get some chickens (!!!)
  • Paint the house, trim, and garden shed
  • Perk up our back patio (repaint our table, maybe hang some string lights...)
  • Pick fruit at a u-pick farm
  • Go to a concert or movie in the park (when the kids are a little older...)
  • Take the kids fishing
  • Ride the greenbelt trail by the river

What do YOU do in the summertime?