normal summerness

I’ve started three different blog posts this week. Three. I’ve finished none of them. Each time I get going, I start to feel annoyed by my own words. I mean, if I’m annoying MYSELF only a paragraph into a blog post, clearly I should just scrap it and move on with my life. For the sake of all of us.

The truth of the matter is that I wasn’t able to completely avoid the summertime blues this week. It happens every summer. The combination of a busy work life and not being home when my kids are off school is a tough pill to swallow. I knew it was coming! I know what my deadlines look like! I know that I hate not being home when my kids are home! It’s the same every year!

(See? I almost just clicked that “x” on the top right to close this without saving. ANNOYING. I’m annoying myself already.)

(Let’s switch gears.)

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I know the saying: If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you feel about it.

I know this. But sometimes it’s just really damn hard to change how you feel.

I was doing really great with my attitude. Saying yes to summer helped. Enjoying the backyard helped. Spending time with family and friends really helped. But getting a little stuck in my worry didn’t help. Getting angry at a team situation I had little to no control over didn’t help. Missing my kids while they’re off school didn’t help. Missing out on family events didn’t help. Being stressed about all the things didn’t help.

So.

I’m about to make the longest to-do list ever even though it’s going to overwhelm the hell out of me. (I need to get organized.)
I’m going to remember to take one thing at a time.
I’m going to schedule some time off.
I’m going to make sure to schedule time with my kids and time on my own. (Somehow.)
I’m going to remember make time for things I enjoy and love. (Like reading and blogging.)
I think I’ll watch a funny movie. Just to kick things off right.

 

Well, I got through a blog post. Perhaps I won’t annoy myself quite as much the next time around. Lofty goals!

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Thank you for the picture inspiration, Nora!!

Finding Summer in My Own Backyard

Saying YES to summer hasn’t looked like I thought it would. More pool time, like I promised. We’ve been good at that. We haven’t done quite as many Campfire Wednesdays as we hoped but we’re working on it. We seem to be spending A LOT more time with one another, which is so rad I can’t even begin to tell you. But…I have become really attached to my own back yard.

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I’ve never been known for my green thumb or even wanting to have a green thumb. But this suburban orchard I’ve inherited has been both overwhelming and so damn good for my soul. But did I mention it’s a little overwhelming? Oh good. Because it is a little overwhelming at times.

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PLUMS

Apricots and plums are coming out of our ears. I’m not mad about it. But I’m learning a lot this time around since it’s our first season with all of this…abundance. There are things that I’ll do SO different next year. We also know a little bit more about trimming down the right way and parsing down the fruit so it’s even better quality. The fruit is delicious. But I think with even more TLC and knowhow, we’ll have better success with ALL of this!

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I almost can’t even explain the joy I have had going out in the backyard in the morning to pull fruit from the trees in our yard. Or sharing our abundance of apricots and plums. I’ve never really experienced it in this way. I mean, I’ve never had my own suburban orchard. So there’s that.

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Last week, after a particularly frustrating day, I came home from work in a pretty foul mood. I was so relieved to be home. Even if I did announce as I walked in that I wasn’t cooking dinner. (It happens.) (I’m just not going to talk about the frequency that it happens.) With leftovers from the previous days and hosting family, I got it in my head that a fancy cheese plate was the only answer. Sure, I could’ve just dumped all the packages and ingredients on the counter, but taking the few minutes to make something nice for myself was a luxury that made all the difference in the world.

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The four of us found our way out to the backyard with the “fancy” cheese plate and any leftovers we could find and had the most delicious and relaxing evening you could imagine. It soothed the soul after a crummy day. The kids read or we talked or listened to music. Sarah stopped by with jam (that will literally knock your socks off) made from our suburban orchard fruit! (No really. You have to try this)

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We sat there laughing and talking. We maybe finished a bottle of wine. I was so bummed when it got too dark, I wanted to stay out there all night long.

But it was the perfect lesson to saying yes to summer more. It doesn’t have to be a “fancy” cheese plate. (Although, three nights in a row last week, I just couldn’t say no to them.) It made a world of difference that I just took a few minutes to make it special. It was enjoying my own backyard and being (SO!) grateful for what I have and for the amazing people in my life. THAT is what makes summer so magical. And if I can take those few minutes as often as I can, this summer is already winning it all.

 

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(Yes. We are totally going to keep talking about the apricot pepper jam that Sarah made with the apricots. I have put it on EVERYTHING. Just thinking about it now makes me so happy. Stay tuned, folks.)