Monday, July 16, 2012

Life happens in the in-between


I've been loving the feel and pace of summer, and pondering what makes it so different from the rest of the year.

The pace is slower (and yet we still have so much to do), the days are longer, and there is more time spent outdoors in the nicer weather.

And it feels like there is space for activities that don't fit in scheduled boxes - spontaneous, solo, unstructured, unscheduled Life can happen.  The family can just head out for a bike ride down the trail. We can say "let's drive to the volcano tomorrow", or just pick up a picnic at the deli and go to the park for dinner.


I love this about summer.  It feels expansive, even when I'm actually still quite busy working hard.  And it makes me wonder about why I fill the rest of the year so full of scheduled activities.  Why is a martial arts class more important than time to ride bikes?  Why do I let myself get so over-scheduled there is no time to read, or sew, or take a nap?

Of course, there are practical reasons why we don't ride bikes in the winter, and those classes at the gym are the only way we'll get active and moving when the weather is nasty.  Of course, there are times when a schedule is necessary, there are things that are worth doing, and life can't be summertime all year round (at least not until I retire and my kids are moved out and I'm a nice active volunteering grandma/church lady type).  But still .....

What would happen if I didn't take it on myself to get Carbon driven to those two evenings a week of martial arts class?  What if all he did for classes was his morning swim lessons?  What if I don't sign him up for any more organized team sports anymore?  For a kid who has no passion for sports, would just replacing the broken basket ball hoop in our backyard be just as good as signing him up for the winter session of Y basketball?

How can I protect the in-between space that is necessary for Nature Study, for Getting Lost in a Book, for Inventing Something, or for Dreaming?  How can I put more margin into our lives, more Summer into the rest of the year?

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