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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I Have a Love/Hate Relationship with Summer

Summer vacation, that is.

One of my friends joked that this harried time of year to all moms should be referred as the "End of Vacation" for us. There is so much last minute, end of the school year stuff going on that we're all trying to savor the last few minutes of our alone time that we can. And trying to balance that with end of the year parties, last minute volunteer slavery opportunities, and the wrap up of kid's activities. If I have to send one more check to school or permission slip, I'm going to hang myself.

Summer is freedom and less hectic scheduling, looser routines, and long hazy days of fun. Swimming, SuperSoakers, burning ants with a magnifying glass being one with nature, camping, long play dates that turn into sleepovers, S'mores, picnics, Popsicles, BBQ, thunderstorms (which I love!), flowers, gardening, mosquitoes butterflies, and sleeping in.

I have to keep reminding myself of all these good things. For, at this time of year, just a small part of me is dreading summer. Dreading having to juggle all that I do now with the yard work (which blissfully disappears in Minnesota in the winter!!), the gardening, and the kid. I worry that one day he will read this and if he does, I ask him to please reserve his hurt feelings until he's a stay at home dad and has his own kids' summer vacations to juggle. (Keep reading, Young One, I think you'll like the ending.)

As I said, it's a Love/Hate relationship for me. I dread it now, but as we settle in to less routine, more fun, and the relaxation that comes with long, hot summer days, I begin to start to hate the rapid coming of the beginning of the school year. I find out that Young One and I are really good friends and I begin to realize that I'm going to miss him terribly when school starts once again. I had a friend comment that I was a much better mom than she was because she dreads summer always and counts the days until school starts again. I guess I can sympathize, she has other issues to contend with, but I love my time with my son. I guess what I don't like about this time of year is the transition.
Once we settle in, I'm fully convinced that we should live summer-like all year round. Round about August, I can be daydreaming about homeschooling or virtual school and how that would allow us to just live relaxed and free all year round. But, then the reality of homeschooling an only child and what that would mean for his social life, not to mention the fact that the cool of Autumn comes just in time to remind us of what being cooped up all winter can mean to a mother and child... Well, I come to quickly and back to reality it is.

Seasons of life. They have their reasons, don't they?

Lemon Sorbet Iced Tea
With summer, comes summer food and drink.

Iced tea is a staple in my house all summer long. I'm particularly fond of Luzianne. I learned to love it when I lived in Oklahoma. I just tried a particularly delicious mixture of Luzianne iced tea topped with a big scoop of lemon sorbet. Oh. My. Yum.

WW Points depends on the sorbet you use.

Start the kettle to boiling. Get a glass pitcher and your iced tea bags ready. Luzinanne is my favorite, and I buy it in family size bags. Follow the directions of your favorite tea. I just pour boiling water over the tea bags and I let it steep for at least 5 minutes. I like it pretty strong. Chill until ice cold.

Fill a large glass half full with cool tea. Top with a scoop of lemon sorbet (Homemade is great, but let's face it, there are tons of options in your freezer section. And if it's summer it's hot and if it's hot you don't want to work too hard.)

Add a straw and if you're feeling Martha-ish, add a lemon slice garnish.

Sip, smile, enjoy.

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