Signs of Summer

1. This pile of last-day-of-school papers and projects and general backpack detritus that has been sitting on the chair in our front hall for the entirety of the three weeks school has been out. I mean, really. At the very least, someone should probably deal with that lunchbox on top, right? Good lord, what if there is food in there. Bob and I are both just kind of pretending this whole foyer situation doesn’t exist. It’s really working for us.

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2. Me, shouting at varying levels of intensity and annoyance:

“Close the door, please!”
“Hey! You left the door open!”
“Can you PLEASE shut the door!”
“WHY is the door OPEN?”
“WHAT IS EVEN HAPPENING THAT YOU CAN’T SHUT THE DOOR ARE YOUR ARMS BROKEN BECAUSE IF THEY ARE THEN USE YOUR FEET BECAUSE I AM LOSING MY MIND AND DO YOU WANT ME TO LOSE MY MIND STOP TALKING THAT IS A RHETORICAL QUESTION BECAUSE MY MIND IS ALREADY GONE”

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3. Charlie planted a small garden from seeds right outside our bedroom window and then proceeded to stare at the soil every day for weeks waiting for something to emerge. He was willing his plants to grow with the very power of his mind. The day something green appeared was his very best day. I wasn’t in on the garden planning but was pretty excited to have a supply of fresh tomatoes and cucumbers right from our own backyard this summer. Relevant to this story is the fact that I make a zucchini bread that the kids love (primarily, I’m sure, because the recipe calls for one entire cup of sugar per loaf). I haven’t made it in a while though because we’re no longer members of a CSA which used to be our primary source for zucchini. When the kids ask when we’re going to make the bread again, I always reply, “When I can get good zucchini!” Charlie took this to heart and planted an entire garden plot of zucchini. It is the only thing growing in his garden. I’m going to need more sugar.

4. Camps really are one of the very best parts of summer. The kids get to pursue activities they are interested in and I do not have to do anything to assist them in that pursuit because (totally) underpaid high schoolers and college students help them live their dreams.

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5. The unrelenting, ever-present worry that my children are spending too much of their time in front of screens. This is the same story. Every single summer. The same deep-seated fear that they’re wasting their summer watching prank videos on YouTube or building kingdoms in Minecraft. Or, whatever it is they do in Minecraft. I’m really not sure. I’m not even sure I can keep dedicating bandwidth to worrying about this. It’s just a thing that… is. The kids live a rich life full of different adventures and responsibilities and they regularly get fresh air and stuff so, I don’t know. I’m trying to be breezy but I will probably still fret about this for the next eight weeks.

6. My children’s continued lack of appreciation for the time and energy Bob and I invest in showing them a good time. I mean, this is not the face of a kid that is about to appreciate an $85.00 dinner. Because, that’s what this particular meal cost and that’s the best Charlie’s attitude got and I have some regrets.

7. I just ate three ears of sweet corn for dinner. That, I do not regret.