Friday, July 27, 2012

The Flip Side

I know I sound like a broken record when I say that I love summer. I really really really do and I've always loved making summer fun and special for my kids. Since they were little I've tried to make summer a time that is markedly different than the rest of the year. I've planned crafts and baking projects, trips, outings, fun activities, playdates, etc. You name it, I've done it. And I've loved every minute of it! 

Last summer something shifted. The bottom line? My kids are growing up. Things that have always been a part of our summer were met with mixed reactions. I heard words like "We're too old for that, Mom", "Do we have to do that? Do we have to go?", "Mom, this really isn't fun for us anymore". Honestly, the realization that things are changing makes me sad. I've had to shift my focus a bit and let go of things that feel important to me. I've had to lengthen my mom-tether a bit.


I had an "aha" moment this week. The flip side to them growing up and saying good-bye to beloved summer outings and projects and "kiddie-fun" is that we get to have new kinds of fun--without me being stressed! We went to Elitch Gardens with some friends on Wednesday and I wasn't constantly counting and corralling kids. I mean yeah, I kept my eye on them but it wasn't H-A-R-D like it used to be and I didn't come home and want to collapse in an exhausted heap. It was great! 

We've been to the pool a lot and I've been able to sit and chat with friend while keeping an eye on them. I can get in the water if I want or I can lounge on my chair. Gone are the days that I'm constantly holding on to a kid or trying to keep three afloat. Gotta say it's NICE!

I've also been able to squeeze in my hikes in the mornings while they're still sleeping. Win-win. They get to sleep in and I get my outdoor fix yet am home in time to make them breakfast and spend the day with them. 

I'm definitely liking the flip side of things more and more.

They've still asked to do some of our usual summer fun stuff. Like camping in the backyard. Watching movies at night on the patio. Swimming. Hiking (okay, they haven't asked me to take them hiking but they've been somewhat agreeable to going). Going to the Rock House for ice cream. And to Sonic for happy hour. I can live with that!!! My hope is that they will look back on these days and have very happy memories of childhood summers. 

 Yeah, we have to bundle up to watch movies outside at night. LOVE evenings in Colorado!
 We hiked Seven Bridges last week with some friends (a LOT of friends actually). Great hike, great company. 

 Abbey and her friend at Groovy Hippie Paint Day at Paint the Town. FUN place! 
 I braved Elitches with the kids. Amusement parks aren't usually my favorite thing but we all had a GREAT day. I liked the water park the best. 

This was Abbey's first roller coaster ride (and according to her, it was also her LAST). So thankful for my friend Heather who took my girls on this ride. I am not a fan of roller coasters!


Anonymous said...

How do you watch movies outside?

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

We either take a laptop outside or drag a small television (with built in dvd player) out there and get an extension cord. Last year we had a neighborhood movie night and hooked a projector up to the laptop and projected the movie onto a closed garage door. Fun!

SndyM said...

So just how cool is it going to be out there the first 2 weeks of Sept.?