2019 Ode to Summer
“We know that in September, we will wander through the warm winds of summer’s wreckage. We will welcome summer’s ghost.” ~ Henry Rollins
How is it we are already in September? Where did summer go? I know I always say that, but I truly feel like it was just yesterday I was stressing the eff out as I packed up all my things and headed to New Hampshire for a couple months before leaving for my travels.
Now it is September 2 and the kiddos began school this past Thursday and today is Labor Day, the official end off summer. And I am officially in mourning.
I am also, in a surprise! Life twist, unexpectedly still in New Hampshire.
Not only did summer fly by (as it always seems to do), but it also didn’t go as expected. That isn’t to say that it was underwhelming or a disappointment, because it wasn’t. April and May were filled with (stressful) grandiose plans and hundreds of overwhelming different roads and opportunities, that I seemed to shuck as it all led me to the one place I was suppose to be: Home. It is incredible how sometimes even the best laid plans end up upturned as life places you right where you should be.
It is no secret that my family has had our share of ups and downs from health issues to crazy ex-girlfriends to death, but we always seem to come out stronger and closer because of it. Perhaps it is because of everything we have been through, we know that family, the people who love you unconditionally, without judgement, THAT is the only thing that matters.
This summer I got a ton of family time which was needed.
I can’t call it babysitting or nannying because these kiddos are flesh and blood, but my Mom and I had my two nephews and niece the majority of the summer. From hanging in the kiddie pool, to taking them to StoryLand so they got to see my brother, their Dad even while he worked, to watching way to much Paw Patrol, to them being my alarm clocks, to the most important thing in the world: Starbucks Dates! We got much needed quality time.
The memories we have made this summer means the world to me. As much as they needed a positive compassionate constant from me, they taught me even more. They are such resilient, loving, inquisitive little humans, whose not yet jaded hearts are wide open to not only being loved, but to give even more love in spades. They amaze me each and every day and I am so proud to be their auntie. I can not wait to see how they grow in the years to come!
My sister also came up with her kiddos, who are not really kiddos anymore. Lord they make me feel old, but also insanely proud as well. My oldest nephew, who starts high school (ahhh!) is a good foot taller then I am! We went to the beach, blogged, watched way to many Marvel movies, (is that really a thing?) and I even bought my eldest nephew his first (decaffeinated) coffee and I am pretty sure I created a monster. My sister can thank me.
As I wrote in my previous blog post, we had a family wedding and it was so much fun hanging out with my cousins as well as my aunts and uncles and grandmother. Family has always been so incredibly important to me, but this summer really stressed that. Regardless of any drama or quibbles we might have, at the end of the day we always have each others backs and are always there for each other. I am so frickin’ grateful to share blood with these sometimes (okay a lot) crazy but amazing people.
Okay sappiness (semi) over, despite everything that went on this summer, I was lucky to have gotten quite a bit of quality beach time. I admit that in my mermaid heart of hearts, if I am not at the beach every day, then my summer is sorely lacking.
With the beaches about an hour and fifteen minutes away, I was lucky to get to go at least once a week if not twice. Sometimes I went with family and friends and other times I snuck away for some much needed quiet time, where I got to read, explore, and even take some naps!
I not only went back to old stomping favs like Crescent and Old Orchard, but I also got to explore new beaches like Bayview which also happens to be dog friendly. I also had my first shark sighting which was cool, but also made me A-okay with spending the rest of the day on the sand and not in the water.
I also was able to shoot a ton of content. Yup I even took work with me to the beach. But is it really work if you are at the beach?
I know, I know, I am mentioning even more work here, I thought this was about the care freeness of summer, but then when you love what you do, it isn’t really work. After a hectic and incredibly stressful few months at the beginning of the year, I feel like I got my mojo back this summer. With new business endeavors, friendships and partnerships like RewardStyle, I felt reinvigorated and the creative juices have been flowing.
I have been working hard to cultivate a space I can be proud of. I am so excited for all the content I have shot and will be sharing on my various platforms, including this blog. In my Type-A mind it will always be a work in progress, but I am enthusiastic for what is to come.
I feel like this was the summer of returning to my roots and maybe it was with being home. As a kid, I grew up kayaking and rafting down the Saco, with the White Mountains behind me and feeling like I was Pocahontas as I serenaded (rather off tune) my uncle and cousins with Just Around the River Bend and Colors of The Wind. Vanessa Williams I am NOT.
How they did not dump me in the river and leave me is beyond me, but maybe that is why it has been such a hot second since I went down the river. It also doesn’t help I much prefer the ocean, and the South has left its mark on me shunning bodies of water thanks to the threat of gators. Thankfully there are no gators in the Saco that I know of!
Last week with family up, we decided to try our hand at canoeing. While it has been a hot second since I kayaked, it has been even longer with canoeing, which always makes me nervous with how tippy the boats can be. But I tried my hand with it and ended up loving it! We canoed down a section of the Saco I had never done and it was fun to explore, blast tunes, go swimming, and just relax on the river for most of the day.
I might be a mermaid, but even mermaids need trees and mountains. I am blessed to have grown up in a beautiful place that offers an abundance of hiking and mountains. It is one of the things I missed when I was in New York, and while I always tried to go for at least one hike whenever I visited, I have been snagging as much nature time as I can this summer.
From four thousand footers to countless wooded trails there is something for everyone. I have mostly been doing half day hikes or early morning trail runs, which still leaves me ample time to write and even go to the beach. My favorites are when the mountain trails give way to beautiful waterfalls. Even in the mountains I am always searching for that water! I am excited because with fall upon us, hiking only gets better with the beautiful vibrant foliage.
This summer, despite some of the freneticness, gave me the reset I needed after living in the Concrete Jungle for seven years. They say you can go home, and you can. Sometimes you need too.
In my round-up last summer, I had mentioned preparing for changes, and this year as I knew it would, brought a ton, from graduating college to leaving the Concrete Jungle, to the changing of personal relationships, to pursuing career and travel opportunities, life is ever changing and evolving.
This summer was definitely a ride, but as I said earlier, it took me to where I needed to be. We don’t always have control on extenuating circumstance, but we do have control on how we react. We can choose our responses which can lead to more positive actions and circumstances. Life, like the seasons is constantly changing, and as the air grows brisk I am excited to see where it will lead me and what chapters I will in turn write.
One thing is certain that no matter how cold the weather, my beach days are definitely not over.
How was your summer? What was your favorite thing you did? Are you excited for fall?