Every summer I try to schedule a few extra days off to enjoy myself. Every year, I wish I had blocked out more time. Summer is short in the Midwest, and we pack it full of art fests, outdoor ballgames and fireworks. This year, we already have something planned every weekend in July! Our schedule is packed! When I am on the go so much, it becomes more of a challenge to remember to breathe and enjoy myself. Even if we are headed somewhere fun, it becomes an item on the calendar, rather than a Cubs' game. I get cranky if we don't get out the door when I expected, or if someone forgets their water bottle. I lose sight of the entire objective: a good time!
I am still a novice at staying in the moment. I spend a lot of time planning and expecting, when I should be relaxing and letting it be. I work every day on staying present and not projecting into the future. It's not easy for me, though! Shopping for groceries the other day was a perfect example. I was racing around the store trying to remember every item we needed. I looked over, and couldn't find my daughter Zee for a moment. I turned and saw her, back by the front of the store, and started to yell at her to keep up. Then I noticed she was smelling the flowers. Literally. The big buckets of them in the front of the produce section. Wow, didn't that bring me up short. There was absolutely no reason for my hurry, and she was just enjoying her surroundings in this moment, rather than anticipating what was coming in the next one.
My goal this summer is to take more time. Time off, time doing what I enjoy, and yes, time smelling the flowers. I have a lot of commitments scheduled, and I will accomplish what needs to be done. In between, I will enjoy the moment, hopefully outdoors in the sunshine! Summer vacation is upon us, and even though we don't get three months off, we can still savor the fun we find time for, even if it is scheduled in advance.