There was a time when I dreamed that maybe-- just maybe-- by the last day of the summer, I would have some mild version of that beautiful tan glow that all of my friends seemed to have by some time around June 15... but then I realized that I could only lay on a towel in direct sunlight for about 15 minutes before I would plunge full speed into the ocean/pool for relief. That's when I threw in the towel and started lathering on the SPF 50, sitting under umbrellas, and calling myself "fair-skinned" instead of "pale" (like it might become some kind of sought-after fashion trend).
So I have to say: THANK YOU GOD for keeping the 100 + degree heat index days to a bare minimum this year. I vividly remember locking myself in my house almost every day last summer, promptly by noon and not coming back out until after 8pm (if at all). This morning, I went for a walk at 9am in yoga pants and a light long sleeved shirt. It was glorious, and I hear that the rest of this week will be just like today. I seriously can't stop smiling. I'm actually writing this blog post on my back porch sipping on a glass of homemade lemonade (and by homemade, I mean one of those all-natural ones that doesn't have a lot of sugar in it, so it feels kind of like I made it myself... maybe).
I would also like to give God a shout-out for the relatively low incident rate of bodily harm/ assaults by mosquitos. If you could possibly take care of the gnats while you're at it, I would love you even more, but I'm not going to get greedy.
Finally, the most crucial contributor to my summer of happiness: let's talk about this age... Oh, this age. It has been like the light at the end of the tunnel. As much as Brendan drives me crazy with his struggle for independence these days, this summer with Niall and Brendan has been SO MUCH FUN.
I hardly know what to do with myself now that I can plop down in a chair and just watch them play. Last summer, Brendan was 1 1/2, so he was walking but in a super NOT FUN kind of way. The kind of walking where the kid can only get himself into trouble and the mom just wants to strap the kid into a stroller while the older one plays, but the kid is too smart for those kinds of tricks at that stage, and so you end up crawling through playground tunnels that are wayyy too small for you, just to make sure your little guy doesn't skydive off the platform on the other side.
I was helicopter-ing him everywhere he went and never had a second to relax or even remotely pay attention when other moms would try to talk to me. In fact, every time we got in the car to go to a pool or park or other outdoor excursion where the kids couldn't be contained in one area, I did a quick mental assessment of how miserable the excursion we were about to attend would be (for me) and then force myself to snap out of it and go anyway.
This summer has been like heaven compared to that. Brendan and Niall not only play together, but I can somewhat trust that Brendan is going to be ok as long as I keep an eye on him (from a comfortable sitting distance). It also helps that nothing makes a better summer combo than boys and dads...
Ice cream, crabs, water slides and turtle discoveries come in at a close second ;)
Ok, maybe I'm changing my mind about summer... I guess it is kind of awesome :)