In the South, you guys have quite a bit of summer left, but here in the North we are starting to feel the lazy days of summer coming to an end. Telltale signs are popping up. I put on a sweatshirt the other evening when I watered my flowers. I’ve turned the air off and opened windows. And, my family just returned from the last camping trip of the summer. Next week, my teacher-children will go back to school and my grandchildren will follow the day after Labor Day. Summer will be done.
Some of you may know, my summer got eaten up mostly with knee replacement surgery and recuperation. A waste of the summer for sure. However, glad I did it and glad it is behind me. A better me is in the making. And, this last camping trip reassured me healthy times are ahead.
At the campsite we had two large tents, Gerp, my traveling writing room, three cars, four grown children who are now parents, eight grandchildren, two dogs and a MeMe. It’s safe to say we scared off any wild life within a five-mile radius. But we made do with an abundance of sticks, rocks, bugs, squeals, laughter, really, really bad jokes told around the campfire, skinned knees, hikes, an all-family soccer game, and a couple of trips to the beach on a lovely lake near our campsite. And the food. How come everything tastes better outside, on a picnic table, under tall trees peppered with a little bit of sand and some unidentified grit? It just does.
Some days, my life is unrecognizable to me. Too much change in too short of a time. Gratefully, the spine of my life, the heartbeat of my days, and the sights I still see before me haven’t changed. My sons and daughters-in-law, and my grandchildren, provide the dance of life that is ever before me. I’ve lost much, actually, we’ve lost much together. But the loss is drawing us closer, changing us in important ways, and molding us into a less careless family. Our times together matter. We cherish them. We plan for them. And there are times we even sacrifice for them. What we do not do, is take them for granted, not anymore.
It is my hope that your summer days will linger a bit longer and not be carelessly squandered on that which does not matter.