I feel like this whole summer, from the very first weekend in July, has been a marathon of packing, unpacking, planning for the next outing, preparing food to bring with us, and repeating over and over again.
As a school teacher, I am blessed to be off all summer with my children. Still, with swimming lessons, camping trips, visits with relatives and friends, a library reading program, and our performance schedule, it hasn't really felt like time "off". Every day has been spent preparing for the next event, trying to get my children to independently entertain themselves so that I could get the next load of laundry done (in order to pack another bag) or wash a load of dishes (after preparing yet more food).
I find myself looking forward to next summer already, when I'll have a 7 month old baby as an excuse to stick around home and slow down our lives (because being 6 months pregnant with three smallish children isn't enough of an excuse, right?)...
It's been hitting me lately that I have only two more weeks to spend with my little ones before I begin working full time for the first time in three years. I haven't really thought much about it yet, as it pains me to think of Margot only seeing me in the evenings and on weekends. And I admit, I have some regrets about the rushing and hustling I've done over the summer to get the kids to their next "fun" event.
Last week, I was trying (yet again) to prepare a gluten-free cake for Jude to take to a birthday party he'd been invited to. The girls, as usual, were scrappy and hassling me to play with them. I crossly gave them a bowl of our CSA veggies and told them to make a farmers' market.Of course, with a bit of direction (and some spelling help) their little game took off. Signs with exorbitant prices were created, vegetables sorted into piles, and of course, cute little aprons donned. Jude and I were the shoppers. I'll tell you, these two little farmers drive a hard bargain and are very possessive about their produce ("No, Jude, you can only take TWO carrots!")
In the face of all the busy fun we've had this summer, I think this will be one of the moments I cherish the most, when I slowed down enough to just play.