Saturday, June 16, 2012

Planning a Good Summer

Years ago I attended a mom's meeting at our parish. The topic was planning a good summer. The speaker was my friend Ellen, an exuberant woman of faith and mother of seven. I took away three important points that have defined our summers ever since:

1. Clean in the morning. Schedule a quick pick up before dinner. Aside from this, don't sweat the state of the house.

2. Declare one day a week "Fun Day." Get ideas from the kids and do them.

3. Have each family member set goals for the summer: one spiritual, one practical, one fun.

So here's what we're about this summer:


Spiritual: Start the day with prayer. Focus on consistency, not perfection. Finish the CD series "Battlefield of the Mind."

Practical: Work on cleaning and de-cluttering one room a week for the summer. Develop some sort of vision for the back garden. Think about exercising. Is that sufficiently vague?

Fun: Bike or walk or hike a beautiful place once a week. Lunch with the gals once a week.


Spiritual: Go to Mass with Mom once a week.

Practical: Finish potty training. We're so close!

Fun: Paint toes (I should clarify paint toe nails) with Mom. Be cute! Be happy! Run in the sprinkler! Jump in the pool!


Spiritual: Go to Mass with Mom once a week. Read saint books with Mom.

Practical: Learn to swim. Improve swimming! Go off the diving board. Learn to make bed.

Fun: Be cute! Be happy! Run in the sprinkler! Jump in the pool!


Spiritual: Have a morning prayer time.

Practical: Work on handwriting. Take over part of laundry.

Fun: Work on stop-frame animation. Make a movie. Learn to play Chess. Have fun!


Spiritual: Have a morning prayer time.

Practical: Learn to sight type. (Seems like this was last year's goal).

Fun: Improve Chess game before visiting Grandpa in August. Work on guitar. Have fun!

Three of our friends were ordained as deacons a few weeks back. In talking to the kids about what it means to be a diocesan priest, it dawned on me that they have a very dim concept of what religious orders are. After twelve years in Catholic schools, I at least knew what nuns were. A friend of mine shows The Sound of Music to her kids every once in while -- that's their only exposure to women in habits.

I've begun compiling a list of spiritual movies I plan to show, at least to the older boys. I have all sorts of grandiose visions of exploring Franciscan spirituality, and the Benedictine rule, and who knows what else. We'll see where this takes us.

So far I am enjoying the slower pace of summer. No lunches to pack! No uniforms to wash! Things never go quite as I plan, but they have been very, very good. We have spent loads of time at the pool. John's hair is getting blonder, and his skin is getting darker! I, of course, am totally jealous.

A friend called the other day, and I had to confess that was 11:00 and I was wondering why I was still in my jammies.

"Because you can," she told me.

Amen to that.


Anonymous said...

What wonderful goals and framework. It sounds like a good start to a great summer. Keep us updated on your project to educate the children about the different orders and the life of monks and nuns!

Kelly said...

I'll keep you updated, Christine.

Potty training came to an abrupt stop yesterday as Ainsley developed a little bug. We're back at it today.

I'm going to meander into the yard and do something. With the installation of the new AC/heat unit, we lost three trees and two bushes. Two of the trees were junky trees you shouldn't allow to grow in your yeard. After spending $200 to have one of them removed, I never will again. All and all, it's a lot of greenery to lose. I need a vision.