At the beginning of the summer I made a list of all the fun things we could do while we experienced our “summer of togetherness” (i.e. endured through unemployment). We were determined to make the most of things and use this time like a family vacation. How often do we get to have so much time together? While we’d much prefer Anthony have a job this is the hand we were dealt and this is how we chose to play it.
I made this list without the slightest intention we’d be able to do it all–I always wanted to have that feeling that we had options of fun things to do. While I’d like to do all these things some day I’m pretty impress with what we did get accomplished. Most of this was do to the generous nature and participation of our family members.
Summer really isn’t over for us here in the Valley (hopefully that will happen in October but it’s not uncommon for fall to get started in November) but I think this is a good time to reflect on what’s been done and adventures that have been had.
- Get a mango agua fresca in Ceres. It’s been too long, and while we’re on that side of town we may as well go to one of my favorite thrift stores in Ceres, The Hope Chest. It’s never too late for this item!
- Go sailing. We kicked off our summer activities by going sailing and that marked the first time of me actually jumping in the water by the boat. I wasn’t sure I’d ever do that! But we all got in, even Isobel. Anthony learned more about the basics of how to sail and he wasn’t bad at it. We love Grandpa’s Pirate Ship.
- Visit a water park or splash pad. I took Isobel to a splash pad before swimming lessons one time and she was not feeling it. Anthony took her another time later in the year with her cousin Jewel and had a much better time, but home girl would really rather play in the pool. Getting sprayed in the water is not her cup of tea.
- Go to the fair. We went three times — I consider this mission accomplished with extra credit.
- Go for a night swim. I thought this would be hard to do but we actually accomplished this pretty early on at Jon and David’s birthday.
- Make homemade ice cream. Alas, still not accomplished. Someday.
- Grow a garden. We had such a fantastic time in the garden this year! That is, of course, until I came down with the pukes and didn’t leave the couch to eat let alone water my garden. It is a sad sight to behold now, friends. I am embarrassed. But we spent many happy months outside learning about weeds and growing pumpkins and peas, sunflowers and poppies, and just hanging out and enjoying the ladybugs and bees and the view.
- Take Isobel to the beach. Seeing a giant pod of dolphins in the wild made up for not being able to go swimming.
- Fix up the patio. Yeah, I cleaned it up a bit, but it’s far from looking good.
- Use our new telescope. Anthony’s grandma cleaned out her closets and found a telescope that belonged to her former husband. She gave it to us and I am very eager and excited to use it. Ideally I would have busted it out for the summer meteor shower, but that didn’t happen.
- Take Isobel on a hike. Anthony took Isobel and my sister to Yosemite while she was home for a visit and they had a great time. I was at home, sleeping and feeling nauseous. I would have loved to have gone but there was just no way I was up to it. I’m really glad they went because they had such a great time.
- Sign Isobel up for swimming lessons. We signed up for inexpensive swimming lessons through the City of Turlock this year and it’s really helped her become more comfortable about swimming in a pool without her floaties. We made a lot of progress and that was worth it.
- Fly a kite. That was hilarious.
- Visit the secret park Anthony found in the country. Have yet to do this. When the weather cools down I think I’ll plan a picnic there.
- Barbecue at home. I really want to learn how to use a charcoal grill. I am really good at procrastinating. Again, I don’t think I’m going to want to do this until the weather drops down below 90 degrees.
– Take Isobel to Marine World to see the butterflies. Who knew that Isobel would end up being more shy than the butterflies?
- Visit Historic Columbia State Park. This was a life list item for my parents. We had a blast.
- Take photos of Isobel in a field of sunflowers. I may have missed my window on this. Boo.
- Go to the River. Best day ever.
- Visit the Farmer’s Market. We went once before I realized it’s not a fun place when you’re broke. (There’s always next year!)