Hold On, Summer

We rounded the corner, the kids and I, expecting to see the garden section full of hoses and patio chairs and bright plastic shoes you can hose off after yard work.

But in place of the summer-time trappings we found notebook paper and pencils and lunch boxes.

“What on earth?” I said out loud. “School supplies already?”

Our kids won’t head back to the classroom until after Labor Day, but I know some kids start school at the end of August, so backpacks one month before that date isn’t so freakishly early, but the sight of those supplies had me panicked.

In 55 days, I lose the kids to their teachers and friends for most of the week. Ah, there – “fifty-five days” doesn’t sound quite so bad as “in about a month and a half.” That can calm me.

We’re enjoying our summer. We’ve had sprinkler days and swimming lessons and Miles and Isla have decided to start jogging with me some nights, which I love. We stay in our pajamas some days until an activity pulls us out of the house and into the public and bedtimes have been exceptionally generous.

In 55 days we’ll have more structure to our days and the air will start to cool. The kids will have sharp hair cuts and shoes that are clean and not too tight. Jonah and I will be left to our own devices on the days he’s not in daycare, and I will find myself, again, struck by how much harder it can be to care for one child than for all four at once, since he will miss his siblings terribly and be moody because of it. I will take him to the library and we’ll take walks and he will tell me all the stories he wants to tell me now but can’t because his older siblings’ tales are often louder.

I feel this panic that I need to fill the rest of our summer vacation with planned joy. We haven’t finished our Disney countdown paper chain, though the strips have been cut. We haven’t done a nature walk yet. We haven’t gone to a beach or made our own popsicles and ice cream or taught the kids to ride bikes without training wheels. I haven’t even managed to sweep all of the collected winter sand out of the garage, and that should have been done in March.

These milestones – school starting, school ending – make already swift years pass with much greater speed. Instead of just birthdays once a year we have new grades and graduations. Each new folder and box of crayons I buy and then put away nine months later remind me that time goes and goes and goes.

Not school, not yet. There’s so much summer left to be had.

 (Participating in Just Write again.)



  1. Crazy! Mine have only been out of school for a week and a half!

  2. I agree, summer it to short. All the back-to-school hoopla gets me nervous that it is coming faster then I want. Enjoy!

  3. The public schools by me start back to school on July 31st. Can you believe it? That’s just obscene.

    • Wow, that is crazy! When do they get out of school? My kids were too young for school when we lived there, but in TX they started in late August, and I thought THAT was early!

      • They’ve started this new “balanced” schedule that gives them two weeks off each for fall break, Christmas break, and spring break. Then they get out of school sometime in later May. Supposedly these shorter breaks, more often help kids to retain more information than they would with the regular schedule.

  4. Sing it sister!! Why do they do it! And you know it will all get marked down anyway when we really need it.

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