This summer my posts have not been regular. It isn’t that I do not want to write, but I have been more preoccupied with my son being on summer break. I suppose for the more serious blogger or writer, and for the more organized mother, that wouldn’t stop them from posting regularly, but I am neither. Most of July has been schedule-free and spent outside. However, August is upon us and our house is in need of getting back on schedule, at least loosely.
But that doesn’t mean that the fun and care-free days are over just yet! I plan on keeping the rest of August super chill and loaded with fun things to do. I’m curious what you have planned for the remainder of August.
Here are a few things that I plan to do with my family before September arrives:
- Go for a moderate level hike. I just love hiking, especially with my husband. Hours spent in the woods or on a trail, unplugged, trekking through Mother Nature’s best kept secrets. Once our son came along, he was curious about everything he saw. Caterpillars, trees, rock formation, rivers, spiders, snakes, fields, mountain tops, berry bushes. You name it, he wants to know more about it – where do you think that creek started and where is it going, what kind of caterpillar is that, who put that rock there, how does that tree get so tall and how does it know when to change the colors of the leaves, does a spider get caught in another spider’s web, when are we going to get there?
- Go fishing. There is serenity on the water, but not with my son trawling for fish! He enjoys fishing so far this year. He’s caught two Crappies already! Thank goodness for his Uncle Kevin and the over stocked Kenoza Lake.
- Sit outside past bedtime to gaze at the constellations. Maybe see the Perseids meteor showers, if the moon isn’t too full. Some of my fondest conversations with my son and my husband have been after 9pm sitting in the Adirondack chairs on our back deck gazing up at the stars. We see bats flying around, guess at planets and bright stars, listen to the crickets and owls. If you’re not savy with the constellations and the planets, there are several good apps that will help you out. We use SkyMap, and it has taught us a lot.
- Get in the vegetable garden! After spending the spring planting and the summer weeding, this time of year we start to reap the rewards of our little vegetable garden. We didn’t go crazy this year; tomatoes, broccoli, lettuce, sweet potatoes, yellow squash, and cucumbers. We’ve given up on growing pumpkins; I am happy to visit farmer’s markets to purchase our pumpkins this year! We planted the small watermelons, but they didn’t survive our wet and chilly spring.
- Bake. My son tells me that his best mornings are when I have something already baking in the oven or cooling on a rack when he stumbles out of bed and into the living room. There is something about the sense of smell that triggers memories, and I hope that when my son is older he will remember waking up to fresh muffins or sizzling bacon or vanilla pancake batter ready to go. Besides the intoxicating scents of baking, by including my son in cooking, he learns kitchen safety, food preparation, and respect for the work that goes into meals.
- Go to the farmer’s markets in the area. One of the perks of living in a rural county is the numerous farmer’s markets around. Locally grown fruit and vegetables, fresh baked goods, wine and beer tasting, unique crafts from small shops, and loads of familiar people all searching for something better than what they find in the grocery stores. Aside from getting the freshest produce and products, purchasing items at farmer’s markets supports local farmers and small businesses. Good stuff for the inside, good stuff for the community.
- Sit by a firepit. As the evenings in August start to cool off, the chill can be taken out of the air with the scent of burning wood, roasting marshmallows, mosquito repellant, and crisp air.
- Go to a fair or festival. Since most of the county fairs do not interest any of my family members, we will be visiting the New York Renaissance Faire in Tuxedo this August. Jousts, human sized chess match, ye olde tavern, Queen Elizabeth I and her court, archery, mead …. I can’t wait!
- Go swimming. Refreshing, low impact exercise, hours of entertainment for kids! Nothing tires out kids like a sunny day at the pool! Plus it’s a skill that once your kids learn, they won’t forget.
10. Finish the Avenger movies. Not everyday will be sunny and warm; some will be perfect days to lounge on the couch and catch up on superhero drama!
Whatever you choose to do with the remainder of the summer, make sure you spend quality time with the family. Step into nature, unplug from news and social media, explore what your area has to offer, and gaze up at night while you’re at the firepit. I hope you spend these last few weeks of summer evenings staying up too late, laughing until your stomach hurts, having one more glass of wine, and appreciating nature, as well as each other.