As the weather starts to cool, the days shorten, and back to school shopping is in full force it truly feels like summer is coming to an end.
This was a bit of a weird summer for us. I started a new job mid-summer and my husband started a new business at pretty much the same time (we are great on timing apparently) so that meant a summer of adjusting to new schedules, juggling new responsibilities, and not much vacation time.
It is easy for the guilt to set in when I sit down and look at social media seeing all the amazing summer holidays “everyone” I know is taking. But I have to remind myself that there is not much point in comparing to others and it is better to appreciate the high points of our own summer.
I can celebrate that this was our first summer we conquered camping and we are already planning bigger, better camping trips for next year. We surprised ourselves in how much we really enjoyed camping out in the middle of no where and are already dreaming of the possibility of doing a back packing camping trip at some point. Though our camping trips were only short weekend trips they were perfect to reconnect and recharge despite not getting a “real vacation” in.
I can celebrate that my oldest daughter made some good progress in her reading skills this summer. Since we had a fairly predictable routine that continued all summer we were able to focus on phonetic reading rather than just memorizing sight words. She went from barely pedaling her bike to racing down the street and riding on new trails. She is starting the next grade with a lot more confidence and willing to try new things.
I can celebrate my daughters found a new balance of friendship and sisterhood. Though our schedule stayed throughout the summer, we were able to take advantage of more downtime. We took a break from a lot of regular commitments and did family trips out in the evenings and weekends rather than all dispersing to play dates or other obligations. On several occasions, I found the two of them helping each other or just enjoying each other’s company.
I can celebrate that I am getting a better grasp on organizing my house and feeling less overwhelmed. I realized some time last year that I have been in a perpetual state of catching up since having a baby while still in university and working. I never really have felt like I have had an opportunity to just put life on pause and catch up. Some how this summer with the cutting back on other commitments or just the fact that the kids are getting more independent…or maybe I am just getting better at finding ways to make our household routine really work, I am finally feeling like we are getting somewhere. I have probably donated about three trunk loads of random stuff we have collected in the 6.5 years we have lived in our place. As our house becomes less cluttered, it is getting easier to clean, organize and to function. Surprisingly, with less the kids play more-and better.
I can celebrate that we were able to find time to meet up with friends and family. This varied from trips from my family and visiting with my husband’s family to meeting up with friends (most of which we had not seen in awhile). Usually I feel like my kids’ social lives are much more vibrant than mine but not so much lately!
I can celebrate that really this was a summer of opportunity. Maybe not to travel to exotic places, but for other reasons: to connect, to restart, to begin new ventures, and to gain new skills.
Once again, I am finding it is really not so important to compare myself and my life to those around me. Instead I will take a few minutes to be grateful for the good things that this summer brought us as I begin to prepare for the changing of seasons. Okay Fall, we are ready…here we come!