It is not lost on me, not for one second, that grownups are not entitled to experience summer the same way children are.
It's not bad, just different.
Regardless, summer is my favorite time of year. It always has been and will always be, no matter the circumstances. Not coincidentally, I've noticed that our adult summers seem to be filled with change and transition -- perhaps it is the excess of daylight that gives rise to added productivity.
What follows is a brief chronicle of our summer days and thoughts.
In June, we took our sort of annual trip up the coast of our fine state, this time ending up in Pismo Beach.
In case you're not from here, I'll let you in on a little secret...June at the edge of the Pacific isn't remotely warm or balmy. It's not the California you see on television or in movies. Despite the known "June Gloom," when the kids have a few days off, even if its chilly and overcast, we like to make the best of an uncrowded beach trip.
We packed up our sand toys and headed even further up the coast to Monterey. Rafe and I had always wanted to see the Monterey Bay Aquarium and decided that we'd take the opportunity to drive a few extra hundred miles to pay a visit.
We took the scenic drive down Highway One back to our
On our drive back home, we made a quick stop in Santa Ynez to replenish the supply of our house wine (scroll down for the Pinot Noir), having had quite enough of the whine already in our possession.
The Santa Ynez wine country is our newfound oasis. It's an easy day trip and a fun place to spend an afternoon with our dear friends, drinking companions, and partners in mischief (who also happen to be Rafe's sister and her husband), Auntie Banana (happy birthday Auntie B!) and Uncle C (the monkey's uncle).
Every time we go, we see things we imagine the kids will love, but I've been reluctant to share this place with the children for many reasons, not the least of which includes my desire to enjoy my children's company and wine separately -- as much as I enjoy both, I cannot enjoy them simultaneously. Anyway, we thought the kids would adore the miniature horses, tiny equestrian specimens roughly the size of our dog, that we've seen time and again along the route to some favorite vineyards.
They were mostly indifferent. (I mean the kids, though I guess the horses were, too.)
We returned to life as we know it.
Following closely in his shadow, I have also given notice with my transitional employers and will begin my dream job in a few weeks. In short summary: it's part-time with benefits, in an organization I love with a leader I respect and admire, and by the way, it's ten minutes from home. I am elated. Sometimes I skip to my car on my way out the door of my office. (Okay, not literally, but I've still got a week so it might happen.)
To get us through some of the summer juggle, the kids have been heavily enrolled in summer camp. They come home tired and dirty, pockets and backpacks filled with crafts and treasures.
We've still had time for some family outings (so much easier now with Daddy's flexible schedule!), some extra long play dates, a lot of picnic dinners, countless bubble blowing sessions and trips planned to amusement parks, county fairs and ball games.
In case you can't read it, the sign states:
The people can come 6 and under can go in our tent.
Yes, my boy wrote this all by himself. My boy who will be turning six in a few weeks and entering the first grade (with his own desk!) in September. I am grateful that he has extended the "club" to include his little sister and to exclude the grownups (though I'm willing to wager that he'd extend an invitation to grandparents, and even a special aunt and uncle, if asked, tickled, or bribed).
Not every kid would.
And so, my dear friends and gentle readers, I am going to close the curtain on this blog. With a new job starting, children returning to school, trips planned and a desire to focus on my professional space, I need to store this blog somewhere between my high school yearbooks, my wedding veil, the umbrellas and wool sweaters. I will continue to write, though shifting my online presence towards my business. Though I'm not planning to cross promote, I'll point you towards the new space (if you haven't found it already) if you'd like.
It, like everything else, is a work in progress.
I wish you many days filled with bubbles, butterflies, and dreams come true.