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.
Sweet faced Elizabeth.
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.