Dear Summer,

I woke up to rain and gray skies. Are you ever gonna get here? I'm peeking out of the blinds that face the street in hopes that I might see you turn the corner and pull in to our driveway with your warm rays in tow. Hope you packed well. I look forward to your visit every year. 

You bring old and new.  Both are welcome. 

Without doing exact math, I figure we'll have seventy-something days together, you and the family. It's important to know how much time we have so that a plan can be made, even if it's a relaxed plan with days mixed in where there's no plan at all. 

Like I do with all guests, my mind has been plotting the things we should do while you're here. I want a list that creates anticipation not exhaustion, so here's what I've come up with. 

Let's get outside. I know. We'll have sweat beads on our lips in less than sixty seconds and our hair will be a poofy mess. Who cares. There's fresh air to breathe (even if it feels like dragon breath). Let's not miss the opportunity to get ourselves outside four walls. Adventure waits. 

Let's go barefoot. Our feet unencumbered we'll tell the world we're not subject to shoes or a schedule. 

Let's sleep in.  Well not everyday.  Even if it's just once, let's not set an alarm, letting our eyes open when they're willing. Beauty sleep. It's a real thing, right? 

Let's not waste our time on our phone. This could be a tough one. We'll miss out on being the first to know important things like what celebrity couple has decided to part ways. We may also miss wishing that person we met at an event one time Happy Birthday! on Facebook. For what we miss on Facebook we'll make up for by reading a book or watching our kid have a big time in the pool.  Wait...What if we got in the pool?

Speaking of Facebook... Let's make use of Netflix, but not too much. 

Let's go places. Let's do road trips. We can visit that museum only six miles away that has been on my list since I moved to this town. Let's get ice cream from the convenience store. 

Lets talk to people in the checkout line and to folks after church without feeling that every tick-tock means we're getting behind on something that needs to be done. Genuinely engaging with people is something that needs to be done, even though most days of the year try to convince us to move, move, move.

Let's stay home. And not brush our hair. Let's turn on loud music while we spiffy up the house; taking time to dance in the kitchen (even if we don't know how). 

Let's watch a sunset remembering that God makes a picture for us every day. How many busy days do we miss it? 

 We should stay up late at least a time or two, squeezing every minute out of the day we've been given. 

Let's cook something new, eat something we've never tried before, play Farkle and cards, listen to a new song...really listen. Let's sing an old song LOUD. 

Let's tell stories and pay attention to the stories  told by family we visit, even if it's a story we've heard a dozen times.  Let's make s'mores using jumbo marshmallows and let our kids sell lemonade on the street. Let's use the hydrant to fill water balloons and write our names in big letters with sidewalk chalk. Let's listen for crickets at dusk and encourage little ones to hunt for frogs. 

You're magical, yes you are. The days ahead would mostly be ordinary, but you in your bright warmth add the extra touch. Summer, you're extraordinary.  May we make the most of our time together. 

Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12


 The book I've been working on is now available through CreateSpace and Amazon. The Village Girl Handbook, I'm praying, will encourage and inspire adolescent girls. You can learn more about it here

Better yet, you can check it out and buy it here on Amazon. 

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