Signs of Summer

Friday:

Ringing of the Bells to mark the end of the school year.  There are times when I think I’ve seen it all at Emerson’s school, and there is nothing more that can surprise me or exceed my expectations.  And then a door opens, and I find something amazing.

Watching all the classes (1st grade through high school) perform during the last assembly (under a tent, on a gorgeous sunny day) I felt nothing short of astounded at the talent, charisma and apparent community of each grade and the school as a whole.  As the grades took the stage, one by one, their growing confidence and presence was palpable.  Watching the progression, I could almost see my little girl grow up before my eyes.  As we said goodbye to the year just past, I found myself growing excited for the future. 

The assembly ended with the first-graders giving their eighth-grade “buddies” a rose and their twelfth-grade “buddies” a lily.  Again, I accelerated time for just a moment, picturing Emerson–looking so tiny next to these budding women–as an eighth-grader, standing with her first-grader, and me reminiscing about this very moment…and then my excitement for the future was coupled by a voice saying enjoy this moment; enjoy this time…

The assembly was great, but really nothing could top a bunch of emlementary kids walking around the yard asking each other to sign their yearbooks afterward, as parents picnicked.  Because many of the kids are so young, there was no rhyme nor reason to it.  Just anyone…you, will you sign my yearbook?  Or in the case of two first-graders, just sign all the names you can think of yourself. 

The last thing Emerson yelled to her friend as we left was “I have to go…but you keep walking around and asking people to sign!”  What a plan…

and when we got home I found this:

For clarity sake, this is Emerson’s note to herself in her own yearbook.  Emerson, I love first grade.  I hope I love second grade too.  Emerson. Classic.  (Underneath is my note! Even moms get to sign yearbooks in the first grade!)

enjoy this moment; enjoy this time…

Licking ice-cream cones to celebrate our second-grader.  (Sure we’ve had plenty of ice-cream so far this year, but this one tasted like freedom…)

Climbing trees, revisiting old friends, and riding through the river in a horse drawn wagon, down to the lower fields to see the farmers cutting hay.  Fresh cut hay, fresh vegetables growing, the delighted squels of children, a huge white dog following close behind.  There is nothing like the early days on the farm.  (Except maybe the later days…)

These photos were taken at the farm last year (from a blog never written), yet they invoke the anticipation welling up inside me on the eve of summer.

Grilling fresh fish and vegetables. 

Picking the first radishes from our garden, brushing the dirt off, and eating them, right then.  Right there.

Staying up late looking at my eighth-grade yearbook–laughing at the thirteen-year-old versions of the people we still know, at my hair, and at my math teacher who used to spit on people in the front row.  Sharing old stories and loving how they became alive again in the eyes of my girls.  Remebering how much I loved eighth grade.

enjoy this moment; enjoy this time…

Saturday:

Baseball. (Or in our case, softball)

Splitting wood.

Staying up late to go to a party I wasn’t able to attend (work), but I hear from my family it had everything summer has to offer: bbq, wiffle-ball, croquet, kids running in packs through fields…

Sunday:

Strawberries.  Enough said.

Planting the rest of our garden.

Meeting friends in the park for some refreshments, Hide and Seek, Tag, and a little froggin‘ thrown in for good measure.

Grilling fresh pork and asparagus from the farm.

Staying up late reading, because the days are long and we have nowhere to be tomorrow…

enjoy this moment; enjoy this time…

Ahhh, summer…I will.

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