The calendar tells us it’s so! The first day of summer is upon us. Ahh – TAKE. IT. IN. I can still easily conjure up the winter we endured, so I’m dancing today embracing this moment. Unfortunately, it is raining here today, so my dancing will be wet. C’est la vie!
How do you answer this question?
What does this first day of summer hold for you? When I was standing in line at the coffee shop, I overheard two separate chance meetings where the first question posed was, “how is your summer?” and the answer given on both of these occasions was, “good – busy”. I made a mental note to write about this and to make a concerted effort to not answer that question in the same manner. How dull! I think I’ve spent the majority of my life keeping a distance from dull. Let’s get on our let’s-have-fun-and-make-life-interesting pants and jump into summer!
My summer break always has a distinct beginning and end since I am employed during the school months, it’s pretty straightforward. My daily schedule changes and I’m around my children a helluva lot more. When they were wee little, I would have to organize myself around their sleep, eat, play schedule and that was enough. I felt like I was always rushing to get things done between naps and planning and preparing the next meal and sometimes would get the privilege of a shower! These days are much different. I can leave the house for a while and they can make do. While they don’t always get along, without an adult in the picture, they separate themselves for safety’s sake. It really has been a glorious evolution of our days.
I am incorporating three words into my summer routine and I’m excited to share them with you with the hope that you may be interested enough to try on one or two of these yourself! Here we go, because I love alliteration, they all begin with the same letter. You guessed it – “S”. Summer begins with S, so I went from there. It’s a theme! 😉 The three words are: scan, sacred, and sipping.
First off is scan. I find that when caregiver is my primary job for the day, as it is during the summer, I need to do a better job of scanning my internal state and finding out what I need to do to address any imbalances. If I am always finding things for the kids – “mom, where are my shin guards?! Water bottle?! MOM!!” or providing direction – “you need to do ______ before you’re allowed to ______”, I seem to lose myself somewhere between these questions, directions, and cleaning. I don’t know what it is about being home more, but I am always finding something that needs cleaning. Good grief! By doing a deliberate scan of any tension or angst I may be feeling, I can address it immediately instead of ignoring it and letting it fester. This holding in is not healthy, nor is being unaware and continuing on without stopping to take a breath and asking “how am I doing?” I have noticed when I do this that I can sense aggravation or frustration, but it’s subtle. If I can catch it at a subtle stage, everyone in my life, including myself is way better off!
My second S is sacred. I was listening to a podcast this morning that referenced self-care time as sacred time. I loved this idea and decided to adopt it for my summer list! How cool that it started with an S! It was meant to be 😊 I am a huge proponent of self-care and self-love, as you know, so this really resonated with me. Find time each day that is sacred to you to be you. Some of us haven’t thought about what we need to connect with our self. If this is you, you need to take the time to figure this out. It is imperative to your wellbeing. Here are some ideas to get you started: exercising – any form! Maybe it’s taking a walk, getting a personal trainer, working out at a gym with a buddy, or following a yoga routine on YouTube. Other ideas include: getting a pedicure or manicure, a massage, or selecting a few of your favorite products and creating your own spa treatment at home. Perhaps you are an avid reader or desire more time for reading. Expand your horizons and find a new author, genre, or magazine. Challenge yourself to learn a new skill – knitting, sewing, quilting, cooking, baking, any do-it-yourself project would fall in this category. Those are just some ideas to tickle your curiosity. Whatever it is, if it feels good to you, that’s what you should do. Make sure you schedule this sacred time like you would a doctor appointment or a work meeting, otherwise it just won’t happen.
My last S is sipping. Yes, sipping. This time of year offers up so many opportunities to gather with family and friends and enjoy cheer often found in the form of a beverage. Sipping is a reminder that you can enjoy yourself solo as well as in the company of others. Perhaps just a morning cup of coffee on the deck, or with a friend or partner, clinking your beer glasses or sharing cheers over a bottle of crisp wine. There always seems to be opportunities to gather with larger groups of family and friends for barbeques which is another time you may find yourself enjoying a cold, refreshing beverage. For sure it does not always need to be alcohol. There are so many sparkling water options out there or a fermented beverage like kombucha. Whatever you fancy, enjoy your sipping. Here’s to su-mmmmm–eeeer!