Wednesday, May 30, 2018

The energy of warmer days

Ask me how I am doing the last weeks of May, and there is really only one way for me to answer. With hands stretched out, face tilted to the sky, eyes closed and a deep breath, inhaling the wafting scent of lilacs in bloom as a soft breeze cools my exposed, sun-warmed skin. What a welcome respite from a long, cold winter that only weeks ago had me wrapped up in wool, my head angled down against bitter whipping winds as I walked to the store along a street lined with leafless trees.

It's here! The pool is open, the garden has been planted, the barbecue has been lit, the mama has been lit, and my sandals have replaced my mukluks by the front door. 

Homemade strawberry ice cream is best served to dirty children outside, picnic style!
I am a better version of myself as summer rolls out. I wake early to run under a sun already climbing high in the sky, I read prolifically, I let evenings meander slowly at the park with the girls instead of hurriedly towards bedtime. I am writing, remembering to reach out to friends who are also emerging from hibernation, making snack recipes to fuel our outdoor adventures. I even allowed a six-year-old to convince me she should shave half her head, because of course you can darling, summer is coming!

I used to concern myself with cultivating a joie de vivre in warmer months that could continue into winter. If only I could translate this energy into my winter life, I would be happy all the time, I figured. But no. I have come to accept that summer is summer and winter is winter, and seasons have their own energies to be lived. Summer is for swimming, being outside, staying up later than the sun, rising with the sun, eating fresh produce, inviting everyone over and bringing adventures to life. Winter is for fireplaces, wool, board games, movie nights, comfort food and introspection. 

Makin' potions
The girls feel it, too. They show me who they are, in their walks and dances. I look into their eyes and hold the look as we sing the lines we remember from our favourite songs. I use my nails to lightly scratch their backs, their chests pressed against mine, horizontal in a bunk bed at the end of a long day spent outside. I bend over their shoulders to see what they are colouring and am frequently amused by their creativity, always moved by their individuality. Four girls in one family and all the many ways to interpret the same things. I show them what wondrous potential lies in the invitation of warm weather days, and they accept my offer with their own ideas of how to make them better.

Raspberries, rhubarb, garlic, strawberries, blueberries, chives, lavender and a narcissus photographer

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