I’ve been MIA from the blogging world lately, and while I’ve missed writing my own blog, commenting, and regularly reading others, this last part of summer has been a blast — mostly offline, if you can imagine such a thing. Here’s why:
1) Structured “free time” with the kids. We didn’t enroll our children in hundreds of camps this year, or plan activities for every day of the summer. I believe in the value of play! But anyone with kids knows that total free play can be a problem. Entire rolls of toilet paper stuck in the toilet, whole bottles of new hair product used for “experiments,” and so on. Yes, we’ve had some of that. But we’ve also been to the library, spent hours at the park and the pool, played with trucks and dolls, made crafts, and cooked together. We had some hard days, too. Some difficult lessons about being kind to each other, or doing for yourself what you can (and not always asking Mom or Dad), about respecting others. We’ve had tantrums (not just the kids), and were cross with each other. But important lessons come from those times, too. And I’m glad we took the time to both play and learn together.
2) Friends. Historically friendships can be difficult for me. I come across as a very social person, and in many ways I am. But I’m also fairly introspective and value personal space for both myself and our family. This summer God has blessed me with some great friendships and I pray that those continue to grow as we go back to our own routines.
3) A chance to participate in God’s story. Some totally unexpected ministry opportunities came our way this summer, and it’s always exciting to see God work and to be a part of it.
4) Time to build great family memories. Camping on our property in West Texas, the beach/boating with one set of grandparents, Oklahoma fun with another set, and a baseball game with yet another. Home birthday parties, church events, Six Flags, going to the movie theater on a hot summer afternoon. Riding bikes together at the school down the street, our youngest with no training wheels! Snow cones, countless popsicles, cookouts, fireworks…
It’s been a great summer, and I’m sad to see it go. But I’m also excited to see what God brings our way next, what adventure or discipline He has in store.
(by the way, there’s a terrible ruckus in my house right now. I just asked them, “what are you doing?” Their response? “Fighting, but HAVING FUN!”)