Thursday, June 28, 2007

Summer Days

It's funny the things I remember from my childhood. As a military brat, mine are widely varied. For instance, I remember seeing kangaroos while we were stationed in Australia. I just remember the dusk time jeep ride past a radio tower, and seeing several kangaroos around the base of it. I remember a trip with my parents to the store where I got to pick out my own lunch box! One of the metal ones with the thermos inside it. It was a Precious Moments one, I think. I remember playing on the playground when we lived in Mississippi, and horseback riding, and I remember our neighbor made Smurf tapes for me. Tapes, imagine that. I remember digging up acorns with my Mimi in Florida and tossing them out into the water. I remember a lovely, satiny, full length, purple robe that my Nonnie used to let me wear when I spent the night with her and how I loved the way it billowed out behind me (for of course, I never tied it!). I remember this closet at my great-grandmother Rush's house that had a curtain for a door and was piled high with quilts. Nifty place to 'get'. I remember making chocolate covered Oreo's with Mama Sue. I remember making this extra special flavored ice cream at my great-granddaddy Bergman's house. Mmmmm. Still my favorite ice cream flavor. I remember riding my bike around in the rain and coming home drenched and wonderfully happy. Most of the memories are from summer months.

Summer transforms the world somehow. Days are longer, hotter, lazier, and packed with new ways to entertain ourselves. At least as children, it would seem. But I have found a neater way to enjoy the summer and all its wonders. Through the eyes of my kids. For all that I remember from my childhood, and all that I have forgotten, it is much more fun to experience it with my children.

Recently, we have had the chance to let our kids do some of the things that I hold so dearly from my own childhood. Praise the Lord, rain finally found a path to our neck of the woods. A nice steady rain in the middle of the day. The kind you play in! We were outside with the kids loving the smell, the sound, the fact that our scrawny little trees (sticks in the ground) were being watered from above rather than our water hose! Joshua pulled Thomas and Sarah Grace around in the wagon as it sprinkled on them, then he pulled me and Thomas around, and Sarah Grace jumped back in for good measure. The kids seemed a tad surprised to be turned loose in the rain, but soon got over it and enjoyed themselves.

Thomas asked about an umbrella, and we managed to find one for him. He was quite the gentleman as he escorted Sarah Grace around the yard with the thing propped back on his shoulder so that it really shielded them from, well, nothing. But they were happy. Then Sarah Grace found out that a girl slips down the slide much faster in the rain! Neither of them were to sure they liked the sensation of speeding down the slide like that, and only tried it once each. They contented themselves on the swing and by 'hanging'. Elizabeth was perfectly happy to just hang out in someone's arms and watch all the commotion. She occasionally even let out a sweet little laugh!

Thomas sporting the over-the-shoulder umbrella look.

A close up shot of a very content Thomas.

Sweet faced Elizabeth.

Thomas hanging out.

Sarah Grace enjoying the wet grass between her toes.

It also occurred to us to make ice cream recently. We started the process kind of late in the afternoon (think 6pm) and as Joshua nor I had ever made ice cream before (aside from 'helping' our own parents), we chalked this one up to a learning experience. I managed to find a super easy recipe that I can recommend as a super easy recipe but not the most original taste around, and mixed it up for the ice cream machine. Joshua layered the ice and rock salt and we plugged it on up. Let the spinning begin. After about an hour and a half of mixing, I suddenly realized that I had forgotten to add the vanilla to the mix! We agreed that it was not too late and that I could simply just add it in and let the machine resume it's thing. I measured out the correct amount and went to put in in the cylinder, but as I took the top off, I realized that we put too much mix in the thing. It was over flowing. So, I took it all and dumped it, this time with the vanilla, into a gallon sized ice cream bucket that we had on hand. I mixed it up with a spoon for a couple of minutes and we decided it would be for the best to make milkshakes for the night's enjoyment. It could freeze into ice cream overnight in the freezer!

The kids were super excited that the 'ice cream' was finally ready to serve. There wasn't even too much grousing about having milkshakes rather than the planned ice cream. They had patiently waited and watched as the mixer spun the cylinder round and round, and were quite ready to taste this treat.

Summer is here, and my kids are really getting the hang of all the wonderfully fun things that this special season brings with it.

And, no, my dearest Lora, neither of them are wearing pants. I beg your forgiveness of all my harassment towards you and your pantless wonders. We are so there.


Stacia said...

Your little ones are getting so big especially sweet Elizabeth.

Lora Lynn said...

thatta girl. I knew you'd come round to seeing it my way. ;-)