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May 18, 2012

Welcome to Summer!

It’s a bright, crisp morning outside. I hear neighbors heading to work and birds singing warnings about the neighbor’s cats. But inside my home, it’s still and incredibly peaceful. I’m not packing lunches or reminding anyone of the time or encouraging “less talking, more eating” at the breakfast table. In fact, the children are sleeping in — a well-deserved rest to celebrate this first day of their summer vacation from school.


This year, I feel like I have a vision for how I want summer to be, and a loosely structured plan on how to make it happen. My vision for the summer is for our family to relax and have fun! So I kicked off our summer by surprising the girls after school yesterday with this Pinterest-inspired bit of fun.



Can I get honest with you here? Since they began school, I have never been a big fan of summer break. In fact, I met it with more of sense of overwhelm and maybe even a little dread. I have friends who would comment that they couldn’t wait to have more time with the kids and less demands on the schedule, and I would feel quietly guilty that I didn’t share that sentiment. Oh, of course, I love my children infinitely. Yes, I love to be with them. But, I still had a job to do, plus housework and errands. Summer meant trying to keep up with it all while now having them with me 24x7; trying to keep them occupied and structured enough and also find time for all this family fun we are supposed to be having. Overwhelmed is an understatement.


This summer, I am super happy to tell you, I feel differently. I. Am. Excited! Why? I think it’s a number of reasons. For one, my girls are getting so much more self-sufficient. Two, it was a tougher school year in a lot of ways, and we are all relieved to be through it. Three, this is my first summer working at simplify 101, and that has meant planning for weeks in advance on how to structure my work time. Four, I’ve been absorbing all the good stuff that Aby has been doling out in the Get Organized for Summer blog series. I think all of this has come together and put me in a very good place for the summer ahead of us.


I don’t have things worked out 100%, and I don’t expect perfection from our summer. But I feel ready for it, and I am going to embrace it.


How about you? Do you loathe summer or love it? 


Happy Friday!

Jens signature black


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I LOATHE Summer. We have around 5 months of full-on Summer here in Perth, Western Australia, with weeks on end of 105F and higher, with a few weeks before and a couple of months after still in the 90's. I can't ever cool down, and there's just so much clothing one can remove and still be decent. Air conditioning is a last resort because our power prices are so high and going up another 15% (we currently pay an average of 30c per unit, as we have a meter that does off-peak/shoulder/peak rates, and Summer has the peak time during the hottest part of the day, at 40c per unit). I adore the 3 month reprieve we get during Winter - actually being able to wear my hair down, and wear jeans. Sometimes, a handful of times during Winter, I even need a sweater/cardigan cos we get a chill in the air! Oh, and I've never in my 41.5 years ever owned or used a heater...


I love summer! When my kids were younger, I was probably a little too organized in what we did. I had theme days...Cleaning day (of course), library day, park/picnic day, get wet day (swimming or sprinklers). Just things they could look forward to that gave them the structure they kind of craved.


I am like you! I have a little dread b/c of the 24/7 thing! And figuring out child care when I have to work at the office instead of my typical work at home scenario.


I really enjoy summer with the kids. I find it is nice being able to be spontaneous, to go check out a cool exhibit at the museum or go fishing after dinner without worrying if their homework is done or are they being up too late on a school night. My kids are able to occupy themselves and the refrains of "I'm booorrred" don't often echo through our house. If anything, I find that they want to spend more time at home just hanging out and playing lego.

Our school year in Ontario, Canada doesn't end until the last week of June, but we are already experiencing 30 C or 90F weather today. The kids have started to go a bit squirrely at school and are looking forward to the lazy days of summer. If anything, I start to dread mid August, because there is still so much that I want to do and have only a few weeks left to do it; as our kids go back to school the first Tuesday after Labour Day in September.


@PK, as much as I am a warm-weather girl, I would probably loathe summer, too, in your situation. Bet you're happy to be heading into winter!

@Lisa, I struggle with how much to structure out time! It's a balancing act, I guess.

@Angela, YES, figuring out the childcare... that's stressful for me, too.

@Nancy, I'm also ready for that spontaneity. Will I still be loving the lack of schedule in August? We'll see. ;-)

Thanks for your comments, everyone!

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