When he was small, my youngest son had a habit of filling his pockets with treasures he encountered in his daily adventures. I didn't always understand the value he saw in his chosen objects -- really, how many rocks and sticks could one boy keep? In his eyes, though, each one was beautiful and important. Life is just like that on a larger scale, isn't it? We gather up the precious bits of our experiences and save them all to learn from and enjoy later. Perhaps you'll find a little something here that you'd like to keep in your own pockets. Thanks for visiting.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Step Away From the Snowsuits!!

This morning I tucked the last of this year's school lunches into the boys' backpacks as they prepared to head out the door. When Will hoisted his nearly empty bag over his shoulder, his face glowed with surprise over how light his backpack suddenly felt. (I had finally convinced him to free it of its long-held, burdensome contents yesterday, when I took a peek inside and saw that his pencil collection had continued to grow exponentially over the past several weeks.) "I feel so free!" he exclaimed with delight.

I've been feeling exactly the same way all day. The past month has been insanely busy for our family, and though most of our pursuits and engagements have been happy ones, the hectic schedule carried a certain heaviness with it as we rushed about everywhere and tried not to forget anything. I've felt as though I'm floating on the air today, knowing that the next two months will allow us all time to breathe, to slow down, to enjoy.

That feeling was momentarily suspended when I walked into Costco late this morning and saw what was brazenly displayed across numerous large tables in the centre aisles: snowsuits. Their bright colours and patterns had a certain allure, I won't lie, but I immediately saw them for what they are: hulking, cumbersome beasts who are trying to suck the joy out of summer before it even really begins.

The sight of the snowsuits made me surprisingly irate, probably because it spoke to me of the rush our society always seems to be in these days.  We barely have time to even recognize where we are before we're being pressured to move headlong into the next thing.  I am a planner by nature, and deeply appreciate the value of being prepared (just ask my family -- I could be a poster child for the Scouts organization), but there is no part of me that wants to buy a snowsuit now when the summer sun has barely kissed my skin.

Today I want to savour the sounds of kids laughing and splashing in cool water, and of birds singing sweetly in the tree branches that overhang our backyard deck.  I want to spend quiet mornings with my bare feet dangling from the hammock chair, my mind lost in the enticing pages of a good book, and evenings tossing a frisbee around with my boys under the lingering sun while the warm breeze dances all around us. I want to putter in my gardens, and dig in to the fresh, vibrant bounty of summer foods whose taste is at their delicious peak. Today I'm not rushing headlong into anything; I'm going to stay and relish summer, such a short and wonderfully sweet season.

I marched defiantly past the snowsuit tables in Costco this morning, and staged a personal protest of their existence by buying more giant pool noodles for all of us to play with instead. May your summer be a joyful, relaxing, and snowsuit-free one!

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