Tuesday, July 15, 2008


...it turns me upside down!" Magic, The Cars.

Summer is swiftly passing me by--again! This happens every year. The seasons take so long to get going, but then all the sudden it's over! It's been a strange summer--full of changes that I'm not sure I like. But, in the words of Mrs. Smith (from Mr. and Mrs. Smith), "You'll get used to them." (I'm adding in pictures from our 4th of July weekend trip to Colorado.)

I've been thinking about what summer means to me. I've written about what autumn means, and winter is, of course, completely engrossed by Christmas, New Years, and a desperate longing for spring. Sometime I'll describe spring--but it'll have to be during spring, because I simply can't capture all the right words unless I'm right there in the middle of it. Except for autumn, for some reason. I suppose autumn has to be my favorite season because...well, you can read it for yourself if you want here (Go to the second post down). And even as I sit here and try to concentrate on summer, my mind wanders to days of apple cider, brilliant reds and golds and oranges, the cat becoming more affectionate as the weather gets colder, scarves and jackets, pumpkin carving, friends, pies, freshly sharpened pencils, and that delicious wanderlust...

But back to summer.

As I sit here, there is a summer rainstorm outside cooling everything and making me want to either fall asleep listening to it or get up and run around in it, to splash in puddles. The delicious smell is wafting temptingly into my room, calling me outside to feel those precious droplets in this desert. As a girl who has lived most of her life in a desert, rain really is the most beautiful weather. It's simply divine. I rather hope there will be rain in heaven. I wonder.

Summer--it makes me lazy, certainly. I always love to draw in the summer. Draw and paint and create works of "art." It makes me want to eat on the patio with lots of friends, and roast marshmallows over the fire pit out back, and it makes me want to sit in a hammock and drink sweet tea and read Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody books, right from The Crocodile in the Sandbank, all the way to the very most recent one (which I don't think I've read yet!!!) But I have to work this summer, so that's not an option.

In the mornings when I was in high school I would go run cross-country with my sister and our team, and I would come back home around 7:30am and promptly fall asleep again in the middle of our floor in the family room. There would be a sunbeam there from about 7-8 in the morning, and I would wake up all stiff at 8:30 with my sunbeam gone. The cats would watch me superciliously as they had migrated with the sunbeam.

For some reason I also think of spending a lot of time at church in the summer--maybe to help prepare for church camp or something, but I always think of sneaking into the sanctuary and playing the grand piano, very quietly at first, so no one would hear me, and then gradually getting louder and louder, and then being very embarrassed when someone stuck their head in to see what the noise was. Not that I wasn't supposed to play it--just I don't play very well.

What else does summer mean to me? I think of playing with the lights out in the library. All my Barbies were there, and with the lights out it was the coolest room in the house all summer--so I would create massive piles of stuff to lean on and then just sit in there and make up stories for hours and hours. All the blonde Barbies were in a family, and the two brunettes--Belle and Jasmine--would always kidnap someone or other and Ken always had to go rescue the girl. I only had one Ken. There were about 20 varieties on Barbie--and they were named things like, Arlene, Kimberly, Drew, Leah and Leia (twins), Sophie, Skipper, Tara, Pearla, and Maureen. There was a big Barbie townhouse that was always in a state of "bomb threat" from Jasmine and Belle. I'm not sure why the brunettes were the bad guys. Probably just because they were the only two I could consistently be certain to tell apart unmistakably. The rest were rather confusable. Except Ken. I never really was interested in Barbie weddings or shopping or anything like that--it was always terrorism. Not sure what that says about me.

Summer also means weeks at Granma's, usually with a wading pool set up and eating lots of those heath ice cream bars. Granma always has sodas for us (I usually call them "cokes" but if they're associated with Granma, it's immediately a "soda") so a week there usually included about seventeen. Bacon for breakfast every morning, roast beef sandwiches for lunch, and delicious roast beef, casseroles, and spaghetti for dinner every night. And delight of delights--air conditioning!

Summer is also the time that makes me think of being a missionary. I suppose because it makes me think of Africa or India because it's always so hot (though this summer has been ridiculously mild). I always think about where I want to go, and wonder whether they kill Christians there. Jolly Berry's little step-niece was at Outer Banks with the whole family on a vacation, and Jolly Berry was describing to her that across that ocean was Africa.

"Do you want to get in a boat and go with me to Africa?" Jolly Berry asked her.

"No!" shrieked the little girl, clinging to Jolly.

"Why not, honey?" asked Jolly, surprised at the outburst.

"Well--" drawled the little girl very earnestly, "They kill Christians in Africa!"

I guess if I'd have known that I would've been more tentative about going to Morocco last summer. :) But seriously, that's certainly not the deciding factor in terms of being a missionary.

So yes, I've never really spent time at a beach in the summer, but I imagine that would be a great summer activity.

In other news, Fred and her new husband are on their way to another wedding and then to their new little home!!!!! It was sad, but also exciting as they left today. I'll see them again soon, but it's so strange how everyone's growing up...

No, it's not a rounded view, though. I mean, summer isn't "complete" in my mind. I'll have to ponder it more...

Isn't it ironic?

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