summer blues

My parents left this morning after an almost week-long visit, which included the holiday weekend. It's always a lot of work for me to have overnight visitors, mostly because having more people in the house - even responsible grown-up types - makes for 2-3 times the amount of normal cooking and cleaning as usual. At least we were able to eat outside (or, in the case of breakfast, in shifts) most of the time because we don't have a dining room and the kitchen doesn't seat six comfortably. Someone is always having to move his/her chair so someone else can open the fridge for salad dressing or get to the sink for a glass of water or fetch one of the 101 things one of the kids needs (napkin, juice, second helping of vegetables hahahahahaAS.IF.)

It's always so nice to have them here because, you know, they're my parents and I love spending time with them, and the kids can't get enough grandparent time. My mom brought Daniel a game of Go Fish, and she consequently had to play it with him at least half a dozen times a day. (She has her limits with Candy Land.) My dad brought some model rockets to shoot off at the park, which thrilled Daniel to no end. This time we only lost one in the trees.

Now the house feels empty and quiet. So do I. I'm always a little sad after visitors leave. Even though hosting can be tiring - right now my back is so sore all I want is to go out on a nice 4-mile run and stretch out but there are currently thunderstorms cramping my style - I love having the extra people around. They appreciate the food I make, they play games with the kids, they're fun to talk to...but now they've gone home and I'm feeling a little blue.

There are other things adding to my melancholy, but nothing worth writing about here. If I did, it would just be whining, so instead I think I'll try and cheer myself up with a list of things I have to look forward to this summer:

1. Swimming lessons. We're doing the full 6 weeks. We joined the pool again this year, and I've got to justify the expense somehow. Plus, if the last couple weeks are any indication, it might actually be hot enough this summer to want to be in the pool and we might actually get our money's worth this time. I'm crossing my fingers that Anya will be ready for Level 1 lessons, which means she'll be with a teacher and not with me, so maybe I can swim laps without hiring a sitter.

2. Running. It turns out I'm not as out of shape as I thought. I went on a run with Stuart the other day (other parents will understand the pure luxury of being able to run with one's spouse). We went 3.75 miles at a pace that felt pretty relaxed to me. I'd like to be going 4-5 miles regularly while I can be barefoot or in my Vibrams.

3. A big trip at the end of July. My cousin David is getting married in Oklahoma. Now, I know that Oklahoma at the end of July isn't exactly a popular destination, but the whole extended family will be there, and we'll be able to swing through Kansas and see my in-laws while we're at it. Yeah, Kansas in August is misery - why don't we just sit in the oven and call it even? - , but I hear there's a new splash pad in their small town and every place has A/C anyway. Plus, we got married in central Kansas in August, so there's a certain amount of nostalgia there, I guess.

4. Fresh produce. This could probably be about a half-dozen sub-categories, actually. I get ridiculously excited about things like the farmers' market, berry-picking, vegetables shares and gardening. We have our first CSA pick-up tomorrow. Strawberries have appeared at the market already, and u-pick places ought to be open next week. We have a community garden plot this year. Also, I was so stoked to see the goat cheese guy this morning at the market. We had to catch up on everything from parent talk to the status of his hot sauce business since we hadn't seen each other since last fall.

5. Hot air balloons. There's a balloon ride company that often launches from the park right by our house. Our neighbor rushed over a few nights ago to tell us they were filling the balloon, so we ran over to see, freshly grilled hot dogs still in hand, and it was every bit as cool as you'd think it would be. Next time I'll bring my camera, I promise.

What are YOU looking forward to this summer?


Jessi said…
I'm honestly not really "summer people" but I am looking forward to the kids playing outside more, having enough sun to clean out the basement and good fruit. I'm so fed up with tasteless fruit.
Fresh off the vine tomatoes that don't look, feel and taste like cardboard.
canadahauntsme said…
Rachel said…
I always feel the same way when my family leaves...come play with us at the pool! We went yesterday and it was quite jolly.

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