Oh well, I have to say- despite some sadness, we had a really lovely summer. I'm a strong believer in slow, unstructured days in the summer. I like to let everyone sleep in, stay in pj's all day, and wander through palydates and fort-building, book-reading and backyard exploring at will. I allow the kids to experience boredom- I think that it's when we're not quite sure what we want to do that we take the time to come up with a creative solution to our boredom. Creative solutions to anything are a winner in my book. We did sprinkle in a few tennis and soccer lessons. Some swim lessons too- though more was learned, in my opinion, during the lazy days at the beaches of the little lakes around here- and at the two day cousin-swim-extravaganza down at my sister-in-law's pool. Mostly, though, we floated through each day as it came.
In that vein, here's my piece for Cathy Nichols' Found Art Friday. The theme was Back to the Beach. Personally, I wasn't too drawn to the theme at first: I sunburn terribly, don't love to be hot or sweaty and am not super comfortable in the ocean: big aquatic creatures scare me, so I'm not the type to just drift along in the ocean for an afternoon. I also found myself remembering jellyfish infestations ruining days meant to be spent in the surf when we would visit the beaches of southern New Jersey where I grew up. But I didn't want to do a piece about scary fish or ouchy-peeling sunburns, so I took a little time to let this theme percolate.
Gradually the memory of a summer month spent at a house on Long Beach Island came to me. It was truly a month of nothing but walking down to the beach with a book and a towel, lazing around in the sun and the sand, then heading back to our temporary beach home for a nap, a big, hungry meal and time hanging out with whichever combination of friends or family were camping out with us at the house that week. If I remember correctly, the only sure thing on our 'schedule' each day was a walk to the ice-cream shop. That was a perfect, lazy summer- even when the jellyfish were floating by.